Structured cabling trends reflect changing priorities

The BEI Connect Team, a division of BEI Construction, Inc., installs Network Infrastructure, Wireless Networks, Audio/Visual (A/V) systems along with Security and Building Management Systems (BMS) using structured cabling. As the world “wakes up” from the pandemic, the team has noted a number of structured cabling trends that stand out from prior years.

“We’re seeing a number of jobs that take advantage of fewer people working on-site,” says Gary Chelini, a principal at BEI. “But that’s simply what we’re seeing at a high level. Diving into the details within key industries provides more revealing details about uses of the technologies that structured cabling supports. For instance, companies are upgrading A/V, Security and BMS capabilities.”

Healthcare: Enhancing security and A/V capabilities
Two leading healthcare providers engaged BEI Connect to upgrade their technology infrastructure across dozens of sites. They chose BEI because of our extensive experience in all facets of IT, including Network Infrastructure, Wireless, A/V systems, Security, and BMS. The upgraded technology enhances A/V capabilities for telehealth and on-site security and building monitoring for the healthcare providers.

“These companies are taking a holistic look at their security, A/V, and network data infrastructure,” says Rob Gagnon, general manager for A/V at BEI. “They’re responding to both the growth of telehealth and recent advances in security technology. For one of the providers, we’ve completed 80 sites and plan to work on 32 more sites in 2021. We’ll install new technology supported by and supporting structured cabling in an additional 44 sites in 2022.”

Support for subleasing and new spacing preferences
The work-from-home trend means that some companies have more office space than they need. Many, if not all of these companies are exploring subleasing. To help them, BEI is surveying existing infrastructure, testing the existing cable plant, and documenting capabilities for potential sublease tenants. Other companies are asking us to redesign and reinstall infrastructure so that people can more easily distance. Typically, this involves an upgrade from CAT6 to CAT6A which provides a pathway that supports 10gig to the desktop or other equipment.

Shifting locations for bank branches
Banks closed many locations during the pandemic. Many banks also paused the openings of planned new branches. Over the last year, banks have reevaluated their needs for certain branch locations. BEI Connect is designing and installing infrastructure to support new locations that are finally on track to open.

Banks are also closing some branches permanently. The BEI Green Technology Team is supporting their efforts with decommissioning services designed to demolish / remove, liquidate, donate, and recycle / e-waste unneeded materials and technology. The BEI Green Technology Team helps to reduce / eliminate the impact to local landfill. BEI Connect formed the Green Technology Team to apply our IT and sustainability expertise to decommissioning.

“We’re in a time of fast-paced change,” says Chelini. “But one thing is constant: the need for structured cabling expertise. We’re busy designing and installing and supporting infrastructure that meets rapidly evolving needs. The team is also seeing high demand for environmentally friendly decommissioning assistance.”