Proving our worth
Following on from the Workplace Futures 2013 debates of the last week I was thinking about how FM can get its seat on the board – get its voice heard – and prove its worth - to the organisation. In times of budget cuts and shrinking margins FM is seen as an easy target, a non-front line service that won’t matter to the organisations business goals.
Wrong! – here are 5 steps to making FM strategic:1. Combine the property strategy with the FM service provision
Most organisations (public or private) will grow or shrink their property portfolios to suit their business. The FM team need to change their delivery model to adapt to this change. Supporting the workforce in the workplace change – be it space planning or minimising moves disruption will go a long way to maintaining a productive business.2.Support the workforce and the changing nature of the workplace
Can FM move itself away from the “Facility Manager” to the “Workplace Manager”? One manages buildings, the other manages workplaces. The workplace is changing, there is a higher proportion of home workers, field workers and hot-deskers. - Is this a reason for needing less office space? Providing workplace support will move FM in to areas of ICT, Fleet, and Regus style services – expanding the role of the Facility Manager.3. Have a demonstrable effect on the businesses goals
Whatever the business, there will be primary business goals. If the FM service can measure their impact on those business goals, then they will be directly proving their worth to the organisation. For example, in Local Authorities this could be local employment, training local people or supporting local businesses. FM can buy local, employ local people and train those employees. This contributes to the economic development of the local area – and Local Authorities will see this as a benefit.4. Provide a highly efficient and modern service
In a constantly changing business environment, any service can ill afford to stand still. There is no getting away from the need to constantly be providing a cost efficient, lean and productive service. Either if FM is in house or outsourced – innovating through continuous improvement will keep the service modern and cost efficient and be seen less of an easy target.5. Award Winning
What could be a better endorsement of your FM service than an industry award. There are many available – Go for it! and don’t just prove your worth to your organisation – Prove it to the industry.