Working in coronavirus times at CFP

Before Article

A lot has changed in the past few weeks. This is also the case at the CFP Green Buildings office. How are the CFP staff experiencing working remotely and how has their work changed? We asked Ilmar Bouwer (consultant), Sander van den Berg (product developer) and Marnix Balke (project manager).

Thuiswerken bij CFPVideo calling, video calling and more video calling

The biggest change of the past few weeks is that a lot of meetings (and even drinks parties) are being held using video calling. “Particularly in the first week I got a lot of calls and always with video. Previously, you just used to drop in on a colleague when you had a small question to ask. I’ve now noticed that we’re getting into a new rhythm, where we no longer do video calls for small questions, but just send each other a short message”, Ilmar explains. Video calls for Sander have also increased considerably. “We often schedule appointments also for minor things that are dealt with quickly. But the biggest change for me is ‘working’ at home. I am now ‘teacher’ at home three times a week and in the afternoon I work for CFP. It took some getting used to!”

Sometimes it’s hard not to mix work and private life. There is now no clear dividing line. For me, it’s just a matter of finding the right balance between being an employee, teacher and having free time.”

 

– Sander van den Berg, product developer bij CFP

Projects continue, but remotely

Flora HollandRoyal Flora Holland

The way we work has changed in recent weeks. Ilmar explains how this affects a large project he is working on: “Royal Flora Holland wants to become energy neutral. CFP is assisting them. It is a complex project and we want to do it together with Royal Flora Holland. Before the crisis we had a steering committee and we met regularly to go through everything. This resulted in many sparring sessions and valuable input. We now do everything over the phone. But for a number of analyses we are dependent on data that we cannot retrieve ourselves through site visits. So every now and then we have to search for the right data, because we have to explain over the phone which systems need to be read out and which data we need exactly.”

Remote BREEAM certifications

Sander is engaged in software testing on the one hand, but he is also busy with BREEAM certifications. “Most work can be done remotely, but the recordings themselves have to be done on site. It turns out that a lot is still possible and with good consultation I can do most of the recordings. But then, of course, with minimum physical contact and a distance of 1.5 metres.”

If you currently have a vacant property, then this is the ideal time to provide your property with an EPC. Employees are not distracted by site visits on the shop floor and energy assessment can be done far more efficiently.”

 

– Ilmar Bouwer, consultant bij CFP

FlevolandProvince of Flevoland

As of last February, Marnix was in the Province of Flevoland two days a week. The province wants to become more sustainable and wants to set a good example by linking knowledge and activities within the province. Marnix: “I’m glad I had the opportunity to be on site for a few weeks. It is important that you get to know the people and absorb the knowledge. Now I can do part of the analyses remotely. I can also visit a number of locations that are currently empty.”

Looking ahead to the future

There are a lot of changes taking place. But what changes are instructive for the future? Marnix: “I hope we keep having more remote meetings. It’s not always necessary to be somewhere physically. But of course you can’t digitise everything, you have to be on site from time to time to maintain contacts.” Ilmar adds: “I used to drive an hour to talk to a client in person. But now, the unease surrounding video calling has disappeared and I would first suggest video calling in the future.”

I try to cluster my work effectively. For example, I plan a block for consultation, a block for concentrated work and part of the day at the office. That’s often far more efficient.”

 

– Marnix Balke, project manager bij CFP