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IBM Services Teams with CBRE to Deliver “Smart Maintenance” Services to Data Center Clients


IBM Services (NYSE: IBM) and CBRE, the largest commercial real estate services company in the world, are expanding their long-term relationship to provide technology support services for CBRE’s clients at select data center facilities it manages.

A new CBRE offering called Smart Maintenance is the latest addition to their existing suite of Converged Data Center Services. Powered by IBM Services, it leverages IBM’s AI, augmented reality technologies and deep analytics to provide vendor-agnostic, predictive and reactive hardware maintenance for CBRE’s data center clients’ technology assets.

As part of the agreement, IBM will work with CBRE technicians as an on-site extension of IBM’s Remote Technical Support. CBRE technicians intend to diagnose and maintain IT hardware from a wide range of manufacturers, leveraging IBM’s augmented reality and Watson enabled AI technologies while being supported by IBM’s global platform, which includes 57 call centers worldwide, tens of thousands IT support specialists and 585 parts centers carrying 1.3 million parts. It is anticipated that when a service call is placed, IBM AI technology will ask a series of questions to identify the problem and help find the quickest solution. If physical repair is required, CBRE site technicians can perform this repair under guidance from IBM’s central pool of expertise. Additionally, IBM analytics can provide lifecycle review for data center equipment and provide a predictive maintenance service plan.

In today’s hybrid, multicloud environments, many enterprises rely on a heterogeneous mixture of manufacturers and third-party vendors to provide maintenance and support for their IT systems. The solution is designed to reduce complexity and create a path to implement and maintain the next generation of hybrid workloads which can help reduce costs for CBRE’s clients, which include leading corporations across sectors including financial services, technology, media, healthcare, energy and utilities, life sciences, retail and real estate investment trusts.

“This opportunity was made possible by the history of success between CBRE and IBM,” said Jim Harding, President of Data Center Solutions for CBRE’s Global Workplace Solutions segment. “We’ve been exploring areas that make sense for innovative collaboration, and we’re very pleased to be backed by IBM Services and its leadership in AI and multi-vendor technology support.”

Additionally, a consequence of the COVID-19 pandemic, cloud adoption and software has become an essential business service for many organizations and has highlighted the complexities of managing cost and usage. It has also created the need for IT decision makers to look for ways to help reduce the costs and complexity associated with maintaining equipment from a variety of technology vendors. Recently named a “Leader” among seven other providers in the IDC MarketScape: Worldwide Support Services 2019 Vendor Assessment (October 2019, IDC #US45595819e), “IBM’s global presence and partnerships make the company a great fit for large enterprises.” The report continued that “… customers state that the partnerships IBM creates at the higher levels of the C-suite allow IBM to truly understand the business needs of the customer and, in return, the C-suite of the customer has access to IBM executives.”

“We’re pleased to provide multi-vendor services for CBRE with IBM’s diverse set of technology capabilities, software knowledge and predictive operational management,” said Mike Perera, General Manager, Technology Support Services, IBM. “IBM Services is committed to innovations in analytics, AI, AR and other technologies to enable organizations to manage the toughest of circumstances, minimize outages and secure their data.”

With this service, CBRE’s clients may be able to reduce maintenance and support spending. IBM’s advanced IT support management technologies can infuse automation into the support process, including predictive maintenance, cognitive capabilities, proactive monitoring, and asset and life-cycle management. Prior to this, without the advantage of Smart Maintenance’s analytics and predictive maintenance driving reduced downtime, CBRE’s data center clients would have used Original Equipment Manufacturers and other third-party vendors to help manage their equipment.

In addition, CBRE’s clients may benefit from reduced time spent on hardware support tasks. IBM’s proprietary asset management and support portal, which provides a real-time view of assets and support actions, will automate CBRE’s IT support processes, helping employees to further improve their productivity.

Furthermore, by consolidating IT support with CBRE, clients can minimize management overhead by no longer maintaining multiple support relationships, allowing them to shift their focus to more value-add tasks.

Analytics, predictive maintenance, fault avoidance and speed to resolution—for both data center plant (e.g., UPS systems) and IT equipment (e.g., servers, storage arrays)—will be provided through CBRE|Romonet and IBM Watson technologies.

This agreement between IBM and CBRE was signed in IBM’s Q1, 2020.

IBM Technology Support Services division delivers world-class service with presence in over 200 countries, speaking 127 languages, 57 remote support centers, managing 6M Service Requests, with support professionals and services over 30,000 products.  For more information on IBM Services, visit


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