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Building Management Systems vs. Off-The-Shelf: Size Matters

Feb 14, 2013

Stemming from an excellent article from, the divide between the “Sledgehammer or Walnut” approach (for monitoring and automation) is highly applicable to Temperature@lert’s overall philosophy and goal. The above graphics show the divide between a 'turnkey solution' for all automation and monitoring, versus an off-the-shelf product that stands as a specialized monitoring solution.

For large scale applications, an all-inclusive Building Management System (BMS) is a highly desireable solution. Still, the first concern with these larger systems is the overall control, as incremental changes, auditing, and management is more difficult on the larger scale. If you have highly specific temperature controls or monitors, the ‘hand’ of a BMS may have difficulty administering smaller changes or performing audits. Such incremental changes can include daily alarms and reports. To quote the article, utilizing “catch-all” BMS systems (wherein incremental changes and modifications are necessary) is like “using a sledgehammer to crack a walnut”. Though the systems do provide comprehensive service, the installation and/or application may not be useful for all businesses. The second concern is the cost issue, particularly if a BMS system is not already in place. You may find that outfitting your buildings with a BMS system is a costly solution, and deployment is typically a longer process than an off-the-shelf solution.

Temperature@lert takes pride in being an off-the-shelf monitoring system, and we’re happy to highlight ourselves as an “easy, compliant, and supported solution”, quoting from the article’s general statement. We may have our limitations, and we understand that the need for a larger, complete BMS system may be necessary for large scale businesses. On the other hand, to quote from the article, “adding users and locations is relatively straightforward (with off-the-shelf systems). Very true, and this represents a primary benefit of Sensor Cloud, our all-in-one cloud suite. With Sensor Cloud, adding users and locations is extremely simple, and you have the ability to monitor all of your devices in one place (internet connection provided). When compared with a BMS, our Sensor Cloud is a “closer look” at your sensors and devices and provides superior incremental flexibility. If you’re facing a potential audit of your temperature devices, you’ll have instant access to the raw data, and will have no need to comb through a BMS to pinpoint the information.

As another follow to the article, our technical support represents another benefit of our products. For a BMS, you may be interacting with Honeywell or other large corporations. You may not get the help you need, when you need it. At Temperature@lert, we provide a more personalized support service.  We like to maintain familiarity with your specific needs and concerns, and we are committed to helping you keep compliance for your industry. We work as a team, and no problem is too small to fix.

We've also launched a services arm to provide nationwide installation, custom software and sensors, private labeling and compliance for the benfit of customers that have specific requests or considerations. For more information on Temperature@lert’s off-the-shelf monitoring products, also visit our products page.  Also, check out our Free E-Book onTemperature Monitoring for tips, suggestions, and concerns for your specific industry.

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