As the Coronavirus pandemic continues to impact the world of business, many firms and organisations are temporarily pausing their operations, whilst others are projected to decline due to changing consumer priorities. 

However, the digital space continues to thrive, and building managers and construction professionals are more concerned about improving proper building management than ever. With this in mind, we caught up with Paul McCarthy, CEO and founder of Snapfix.

To learn more about building management, Paul’s business and more, watch our full Business Leaders interview below, or read on for the highlights.

Paul’s Career Journey

Raised on a farm in Cork, Paul went on to obtain a degree in Computer Science from University College Cork (UCC). 

Since then, the entrepreneur has worked a jet-setting career in software stretching over 25 years; working in New York City for 10 years, as well as for companies in London, Australia and Asia. 

building management paul mccarthy

However, this nature of skill and work was combined with his work with a family business focussed on property and building management. He has now brought this combination of knowledge sets to Snapfix: his own product which he describes as being like “WhatsApp for buildings”.

paul mccarthy snapfix
Paul’s business venture, Snapfix, is described as being like ‘WhatsApp for buildings’. Image credit: Business Post

Snapfix: A Building Management Toolkit

So, what is Snapfix? Paul outlines the broad range of features in his cloud-based platform: “Everyone is using WhatsApp at the minute, and it’s really great in terms of being really simple, intuitive and user-friendly. It’s also great for chat – but it’s not great for task management,” he explains. 

“We’ve brought all the best features of WhatsApp – including photos, tags and messaging – and at the minute it’s going really well in the building management and construction sectors.”

What is truly unique about Snapfix is that anyone who may be in a particular building or site can download the app and use it to take pictures and exchange messages if, for example, the spot maintenance issues. Uploading the material submits it to building managers and construction leaders for resolution. 

“We use a very simple, red-amber-green traffic light system for progressing the resolution, and it requires minimal-to-zero training. Everyone understands what a camera icon is, everyone knows what traffic lights are, and we want to keep to that degree of simplicity,” explains the CEO.

 “There’s obviously some more complex parts of it, but the core is about leveraging the eyes and ears of everyone on a site to make it better at all times. Buildings are always evolving, they’re like living entities – so it just never stops.”

The real value proposition of Snapfix is in time – the most valuable of commodities – and how it is saved by using the platform. Paul explains that by having all of this information in the palm of their hands, those on such sites will save significant portions of time looking for that information as they would traditionally. He adds that by improving the general maintenance and safety of buildings using the app, there is also potential to reduce potential costs in damage repair and insurance claims. 

Finding a Lucrative Niche

Snapfix found its first major successes in construction, as well as in the hotel industry – a sector which he decided was a great one to focus on, being open 24/7, demanding the highest standards and having the highest number of bilingual staff. Paul highlights that the company’s initial focus is in the UK and Ireland – after which they hope to look towards more opportunities in the United States.

How has the outbreak of COVID-19 impacted Paul’s business? Snapfix immediately responded to the outbreak by offering all of their customers a free six-month extension on their subscription, hoping to give something back to a key industry in strange and challenging times. 

Inside the business, the team at Snapfix have used the time to take stock and engage with their customers whilst slowly expanding into other markets: “We’ve had more business with construction firms, as well as engineering companies and factories. We’re also reaching out to hospitals and care homes to offer a free subscription – again, just trying to do what we can for those sectors.”

Whilst the societal and economic damage of the virus is obvious, Paul suggests that there may be some silver linings to the situation, particularly in regards to the success of remote working.

“It has given people more opportunities to realise the value of their time, especially with time limits on the likes of Zoom and other products. It’s been an amazing social experiment globally, and I think we’re going to see some great advances through remote working. To even give people the option to have flexible work is essential, and we can’t go back to the pre-Covid days”. 

For the building management expert, one of the real challenges will be in buildings with elevators – especially given the need for social distancing and the highly transmissible nature of the illness. 

By securing necessary funding, Snapfix has gone from strength to strength, even during a pandemic. Image credit: Snapfix

The Future is Bright

Snapfix’s rapid growth suggests that the future will be bright for the cloud-based building management platform. The company continues to progress through multiple funding rounds, benefitting from the valuable advice and guidance of angel investors – with VCs highlighted as the next target. Paul has also praised the assistance of mentors for Enterprise Ireland, who were instrumental in the success of the funding rounds.

“There’s plenty of investors out there. They are demanding and they should be demanding – you should listen all the time and improve as you go.”

To learn more interesting insights from Paul, check out the full Business Leaders interview over on our YouTube channel. To find out more information about Snapfix’s range of useful features or to download a Snapfix Building Brochure, visit the company’s official website. 

Unveiling the Benefits of Effective Building Management

Effective building management isn’t just about keeping the lights on and the floors clean; it’s a strategic investment that yields a multitude of benefits, impacting not only the day-to-day experience of occupants but also the long-term value and sustainability of the property itself. Let’s delve deeper into the key benefits that arise from well-managed buildings:

1. Boosted Property Value and Rental Income:

  • A well-maintained and efficiently operated building attracts higher rental rates and attracts tenants faster. Think of it as a domino effect: timely repairs prevent wear and tear, creating a more aesthetically appealing and functional space. This, in turn, leads to higher occupancy rates and increased rental income for property owners.
  • Proactive maintenance and preventive measures prolong the life of the building and its systems. This translates to lower repair costs and maintenance needs in the future, further enhancing the property’s value.

2. Reduced Operating Costs:

  • Effective management minimizes unnecessary expenses. By optimizing energy consumption through smart systems and implementing efficient maintenance schedules, building managers can significantly reduce utility costs and operational overhead.
  • Preventive maintenance proactively identifies and addresses potential issues before they turn into costly repairs. This saves money in the long run and prevents disruptions to smooth building operations.

3. Improved Tenant Satisfaction and Retention:

  • Happy tenants stick around. Effective building management prioritizes tenant well-being and satisfaction by addressing concerns promptly, maintaining open communication, and fostering a positive community environment. This translates to higher retention rates and lower vacancy costs.
  • Modern amenities, responsive maintenance, and a clean, safe living space contribute to a sense of comfort and security for residents. This fosters positive word-of-mouth recommendations and attracts new tenants, further enhancing the building’s reputation.

4. Regulatory Compliance:

  • Building managers navigate the complex web of regulations and ensure adherence to safety standards, building codes, and environmental laws. This protects both property owners and occupants from legal liabilities and ensures a safe and compliant environment.
  • Maintaining proper documentation and meeting regulatory requirements avoids fines and penalties, preserving the property’s value and reputation.

5. Risk Mitigation:

  • Effective building management proactively identifies and mitigates potential risks. Regular inspections, disaster preparedness plans, and robust security measures minimize the likelihood of accidents, property damage, and safety incidents.
  • Proactive risk management translates to reduced insurance premiums and protects both the property and its occupants from unforeseen financial burdens.

 Challenges Facing Building Managers

While building managers wield the magic wand that keeps the wheels of a property turning smoothly, their journey is far from a fairytale stroll. They face a constant gauntlet of challenges, demanding resourcefulness, agility, and a superhero’s ability to prioritize and problem-solve under pressure. Let’s explore some of the most common hurdles these unsung heroes navigate:

1. The Crumbling Castle: Aging Infrastructure and Deferred Maintenance:

  • Time takes its toll. Aging buildings with creaky pipes, outdated electrical systems, and crumbling brickwork pose a constant threat to smooth operations and tenant safety. Balancing urgent repairs with limited budgets while minimizing disruptions becomes a delicate dance.
  • Deferred maintenance, the act of postponing repairs, creates a ticking time bomb of potential disasters. Leaks, electrical failures, and structural issues can lead to costly damages and safety concerns, highlighting the importance of proactive maintenance strategies.

2. Financial Juggling: Constrained Budgets:

  • Stretching a single dollar across multiple demands is the mantra of every building manager. Balancing essential repairs, utility bills, security measures, and modern amenities within tight budgets requires creativity and financial wizardry.
  • Prioritization becomes key. Juggling competing needs – a leaky roof vs. a fresh coat of paint – demands careful analysis of potential repercussions and long-term cost impacts.

3. The Symphony of Complaints: Tenant Demands and Complaints:

  • No two tenants are alike, and catering to their diverse needs and expectations can feel like conducting a chaotic orchestra. Managing noise complaints, addressing maintenance requests promptly, and resolving interpersonal conflicts requires patience, diplomatic skills, and a genuine dedication to resident satisfaction.
  • Communication becomes crucial. Keeping tenants informed about plans, updates, and potential disruptions prevents misunderstandings and fosters a sense of community and trust.

4. The Unexpected Twist: Emergency Repairs and Issues:

  • Mother Nature and unforeseen accidents don’t consult calendars. Burst pipes, sudden power outages, or security breaches can throw even the most meticulously planned schedule into disarray. Quick thinking, resourcefulness, and the ability to mobilize resources under pressure are vital to handling these emergencies efficiently and minimizing disruptions.

These challenges may seem daunting, but they are the very substance that builds the mettle of a seasoned building manager. By cultivating problem-solving skills, fostering open communication, and adopting a proactive approach, these heroes turn lemons into lemonade, ensuring the smooth sailing of their building communities.

Remember, behind every well-maintained property lies a dedicated building manager, navigating the tightrope of challenges with resilience, dedication, and a genuine passion for creating a thriving environment for all.

Building a Fortress of Success: Critical Aspects of Building Management

Effective building management isn’t a one-time feat; it’s a continuous symphony of proactive planning, attentive maintenance, and responsive communication. Each note played meticulously ensures the harmony of a well-run property, fostering tenant satisfaction, enhancing value, and safeguarding against future pitfalls. Let’s delve deeper into the critical aspects that form the foundation of successful building management:

1. The Shield of Proactivity: Preventative Maintenance Programs

  • Forget firefighting, embrace fireproofing. Implementing robust preventative maintenance programs is the cornerstone of avoiding costly repairs and disruptions. Regular inspections, equipment servicing, and system checks nip potential problems in the bud, extending the lifespan of building systems and preventing larger issues down the line.

2. The Roadmap to the Future: Capital Improvement Planning

  • Buildings, like any living organism, need to evolve. Strategic capital improvement planning ensures smooth modernization and upgrades. Whether it’s replacing aging HVAC systems, implementing energy-efficient lighting, or installing accessibility features, these planned improvements enhance long-term value, attract new tenants, and keep existing ones happy.

3. The Pulse of the Building: Updated Building Systems (HVAC, Electrical, Plumbing)

  • The heart and arteries of a building are its essential systems. Outdated HVAC, electrical, and plumbing infrastructure pose not only operational difficulties but also potential safety hazards. Investing in modernization ensures efficient energy consumption, reliable operation, and peace of mind for both tenants and property owners.

4. The Bridge of Communication: Tenant Communication and Satisfaction Surveys

  • Open dialogue is the fuel for a thriving community. Regular communication with tenants through newsletters, resident meetings, and responsive online platforms keeps them informed, heard, and valued. Conducting satisfaction surveys provides valuable feedback and allows building managers to tailor their approach to meet evolving needs and concerns.

Beyond these core aspects, other vital elements contribute to building management success:

  • Technology integration: Leveraging smart building technologies for automated maintenance, energy management, and tenant convenience unlocks a new level of efficiency and personalized living experiences.
  • Sustainability practices: Implementing green initiatives such as waste reduction, water conservation, and energy-efficient systems not only benefit the environment but also attract environmentally conscious tenants and enhance the property’s value.
  • Safety and security: Ensuring a safe and secure environment through fire safety protocols, access control systems, and proactive security measures is paramount for both peace of mind and legal compliance.

By prioritizing these critical aspects, building managers become more than just maintenance heroes; they transform into architects of thriving communities, guardians of property value, and champions of sustainable living. Their dedication ensures that the buildings they manage don’t just stand tall, but stand as vibrant hubs of connection, comfort, and well-being.

Building Brains, Boosting Efficiency: Leveraging Technology for Better Building Management

Gone are the days of manual logbooks and reactive maintenance – the future of building management is paved with smart systems, interconnected devices, and data-driven insights. By embracing technology, building managers can transform their operations, elevate tenant experiences, and unlock a new era of efficiency and sustainability. In the context of leveraging technology for better building management, the integration of hvac scheduling software is a critical step towards optimizing operational efficiency and ensuring high-quality tenant service. Such tools not only streamline maintenance requests but also contribute significantly to proactive building upkeep, ultimately enhancing tenant satisfaction. Let’s explore some key ways technology is reshaping the landscape:

1. Building Automation Systems (BAS): The Central Nervous System

Imagine a brain overseeing all vital functions: lighting, temperature, ventilation, and security. BAS are just that – central hubs that integrate and automate building systems, optimizing performance and minimizing human intervention. From regulating temperature based on occupancy to scheduling lighting, a BAS ensures smooth operation, reduces energy consumption, and offers occupants a comfortable, responsive environment.

2. Remote Monitoring and Control: Eyes and Ears at the Ready

Imagine being able to see and control every corner of your building from a single screen. Remote monitoring and control systems equip managers with real-time data on energy usage, equipment performance, and potential issues. Whether it’s a flickering light in a remote corridor or a temperature spike in the server room, immediate alerts and remote control capabilities allow for prompt repairs, preventing disruptions and saving time.

3. Online Tenant Portals: Building a Bridge of Convenience

Communication and convenience go hand-in-hand. Online tenant portals provide a one-stop shop for residents to submit maintenance requests, track work orders, make payments, book amenities, and access important building information. This fosters transparency, simplifies communication, and empowers tenants to take control of their experience, leading to increased satisfaction and engagement.

4. Analytics Platforms: Knowledge is Power

Data is the new gold in building management. Analytics platforms transform raw data from sensors and systems into actionable insights. Imagine understanding energy consumption patterns, identifying equipment inefficiencies, and predicting maintenance needs before they arise. This empowers managers to make data-driven decisions, optimize resource allocation, and proactively address potential issues, saving costs and enhancing building performance.

Beyond these core technologies, other innovations are emerging:

  • Smart security systems: Real-time intrusion detection, facial recognition, and automated access control enhance security and peace of mind.
  • IoT-powered devices: From smart thermostats to self-cleaning surfaces, the integration of internet-connected devices personalizes experiences and streamlines maintenance.
  • Building information modeling (BIM): Creating digital twins of buildings enables virtual testing, predictive maintenance, and improved collaboration among stakeholders.

Leveraging technology doesn’t just streamline operations; it opens doors to previously unimaginable possibilities. Building managers can now focus on creating a thriving community, fostering environmental awareness, and delivering personalized experiences that enhance tenant satisfaction and boost property value. By embracing these digital tools and staying at the forefront of innovation, building managers can transform their properties into smart, sustainable, and truly human-centric living spaces.


Q: What are the benefits of embracing these trends and innovations in building management?

A: Adopting these trends can improve efficiency, attract tenants/employees, promote sustainability, and enhance occupant well-being. You can expect:

  • Reduced operating costs: Smart systems optimize energy usage and predictive maintenance minimizes repairs.
  • Increased tenant/employee satisfaction: Flexible spaces, wellness features, and technology integration create a more comfortable and productive environment.
  • Enhanced sustainability: Green building practices reduce environmental impact and attract eco-conscious residents/employees.
  • Boosted property value: Modern amenities and innovative features make buildings more desirable and valuable.

Q: What are some of the challenges in implementing these trends?

A: Some challenges include:

  • Initial investment costs: Technology and infrastructure upgrades require upfront investment.
  • Security and privacy concerns: Data collection and integration raise privacy concerns that need to be addressed.
  • Tenant/employee adoption: New technologies may require training and adaptation for smooth integration.
  • Regulation and legal compliance: New standards and technologies may require adjustments to existing regulations.

Q: Where can I learn more about building management trends and innovations?

A: Various resources are available, including:

  • Industry publications and websites focused on building management and technology.
  • Professional organizations like the International Facility Management Association (IFMA) and the Green Building Council.
  • Conferences and workshops dedicated to building management trends and innovations.


The future of building management is brimming with exciting possibilities. By embracing smart technologies, prioritizing sustainability, and catering to evolving needs for flexibility and well-being, building managers can transform their properties into thriving hubs of productivity, comfort, and connection.

Embrace the trends, navigate the challenges, and remember – the success of these innovations lies in creating environments that nurture both the planet and the people who inhabit them. Let’s build a future where buildings become not just shelters but living organisms that pulsate with intelligence, adaptability, and a genuine commitment to human and environmental well-being.

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