Large scale offices and businesses of all types rely on Facilities Managers for their daily operations to run smoothly and ensure that all their offices and equipment are kept in top condition. In this article, we unpack three of the biggest challenges that facilities managers face in today's corporate environment, and we discuss some of the best actions that they can take to manage those challenges.

Limiting Management Costs

In todays more enlightened environment, most companies try to be more sustainable and environmentally friendly, while at the same time trying to manage costs. In many cases, it falls on facilities managers to figure out how to accomplish these often-competing needs, with a limited budget and resources.

It’s not uncommon for facilities managers to only be allocated a small fraction of the budgetary sums that they request.

If you are a facilities manager, what can you do to cut down your costs? Experts suggest that as you make estimates for your budget, you should make sure that you consider all costs, and you allocate each item a level of priority so that it is easier to figure out which projects are mandatory, in the event of budgetary constraints. Facilities managers have to be good negotiators for dealing with suppliers and contractors — and if they are, they may be able to significantly reduce the price they are first quoted.

Finding reliable contractors

Facilities managers have a difficult time finding reliable contractors such as cleaners, equipment maintenance personnel, electricians, plumbers, and mechanics. The problem isn’t that there are no people offering these services, it’s that the service market is saturated with companies and contractors who don’t offer the quality of service that facilities managers need. The bar for entry in the cleaning and maintenance field is so low that many people have set up businesses in these industries without the necessary experience required to provide services consistently and reliably.

says Smart Cleaning Solutions CEO Nicholas Pastras.

The same is true for maintenance services as well. So, how can you as a facilities manager ensure that the cleaning and maintenance contractors that you hire are actually competent? Well, for one, you can limit your search for contractors to companies that actually have Quality Management Systems (QSM). If you hire a contractor who has an ISO 9001 QSM certification, you can be assured that the business will have measures in place to guarantee certain levels of customer service that are internationally acceptable. Additionally, you can inquire about their personnel’s training and experience, liability coverage, and commitment to open and direct communication. The more organized a contractor seems to be during the interview stage, the more likely they are to be competent at performing their actual duties.

Team coordination and time management

As a facilities manager, you will always be swamped with responsibilities, and you’ll feel as though there aren’t enough hours in the day to perform all of them. You will also be in charge of coordinating various teams in the workplace to ensure that multiple interlinked operations run smoothly. For both you and your teams, you want to ensure that you maximize productivity, so you have to do everything you can to get organized.

So, how does a facilities manager stay organized? By taking advantage of technological solutions. You can use digital calendars to organize your own activities as well as those of the teams under your supervision. You can use cloud-based data storage tools to make important information easily and remotely accessible to both you and your teams. Remember that the earlier you plan your activities, the better it is for everyone involved because your teams are more likely to synchronize their activities with yours if they get adequate notice.

 

Published by Inder Singh