Mr. Tony Vesterinen's job is to make LUT premises meet the needs of research and teaching purposes while managing the University's operating expenses and keeping it on budget. His background is in Electrical Engineering. He got M.Sc. degree in Energy technology in 1997 from LUT and since then he has been working there as a researcher, laboratory manager, manager of Electronics Design Center and currently as a Facility Manager since 2015.
Indoor Informatics - What was the “pain point” that motivated you as a College Manager to explore and have a better understanding about the University?
Tony - There has been contradictory information about how many and which size of teaching rooms are needed. Some groups have mentioned that it's hard to fit certain classes and student groups to the current available classrooms, meanwhile other rooms are empty during daytime in the middle of the week. That was quite confusing so I wanted to figure out the real situation concerning teaching premises. We have never had before an accurate estimation of such issues based on numbers.
Tony - The installation is simple. You just add one or two cameras per room and that’s all. But it gets more complicated in older buildings which don't have enough data and electricity facilities nearby. IT Services of LUT has also been involved in helping to build up the network.
Indoor Informatics - What have been the Indoor’s weaknesses and strengths during the implementation phase?
Tony - Their strengths are the enthusiastic and positive attitude to handle the project and get things done for the customer. Also "teaching the program" to efficiently recognize humans in the room seems to be in high level in the company and it's one of their key competencies. Maybe in the beginning there was a lack of human resources, which is quite understandable when entering to a new business field.
Tony - The Overall classrooms space utilization turned out to be much lower than I expected, meaning the average value. There are also certain rooms which have intermittent over usage. The variation of capacity utilization in rooms and between the rooms is huge.
Indoor Informatics - What are your expectations on Optimizing the Floor Space usage in your University?
Tony - That's an interesting question, which has raised a lot of interest and discussions with the representatives of other universities in Finland. The goal is that we can come up with a system in order to optimize classrooms for lectures and classes based on previous statistics regarding the students attendance and also considering current and future aspects for scheduling the most suitable rooms for the lessons. The timetable will be arranged in advance, but the rooms could be selected based on the gathered information for example in the night right before the classes, not a year or six months before.
We hope to get further information what facility size is the most suitable one and how many is needed. Also, there should be marks in the data if some features are taking/affecting the usage of space, for example, if the furniture is inappropriate for teaching purposes.
As a result of the project we expect to be able to utilize more efficient all of our teaching premises and therefore be able to offer more space for student’s assignments, so We can offer better educational experiences for our students and personnel.
Interviewed by Marcos Vinicius, Junior Sales Manager at Indoor Informatics.