The recent easter celebration has marked the beginning of public holidays and mini work breaks in Nigeria for the year 2021. Holidays are generally a unique time of year for facility managers as they present unique challenges and the need to ensure that the facilities are operational for holiday parties, promotions, and other events.
Successful facility management always begins with a plan. Before the holiday’s, it is a good idea for a facility manager to prepare a documented strategy. This documented plan should take account the nature of the facilities and include a pre-check list for occupants of facilities before they leave for the holidays.
Holiday Season Preparedness Strategy
Revisit Your Facility Management Maintenance Schedules
The nature of a facility determines whether it will be open or closed during the holidays, Retail establishments usually have large influx of crowds and customers as they carry out huge promotions and there are countless bottlenecks that could halt business operations at the last minute.
When holiday maintenance plan starts at the right time maintenance schedules can be revisited to ensure nothing gets delayed and facility’s as well as equipments remain in good shape during the shutdown.
Eliezer Workplace Management Limited believes the automated maintenance processes like a tracking software which allows for scheduling of events on a live calendar, recording of all details about office facilities will make it easier and avoid the hassle of making last minute appointments.
Equipment test runs and Maintenance
Well-maintained office facilities and equipment are key to a productive work environment. To ensure efficient workflows after the holidays, it is important to schedule facilities services on time hence the PPM (Planned Preventive Maintenance).
However, preventive maintenance does have a few drawbacks, a major one is having to shut down assets usually during peak times for one planned maintenance work or the other that may not be necessarily required yet.
Eliezer Workplace Management is of the opinion that the best way to get around this is to schedule such downtime/ inspection/maintenance for the holiday’s when the equipment’s will not be in use thereby eliminating any flaws that could cause hindrance later.
Emergency maintenance plan/Safety systems
Regardless of everything being planned on time, there is still a chance for last minute facility breakdowns, and one must be prepared for this. Therefore, arrangement for emergency service must be made in case of capricious circumstances.
Every company has a safety control system installed in the building to reduce risk of hazard as this is an integral part of the company HSE policy, safety control systems need to be inspected and made compliant before closing for the holidays e.g., Fire damper inspections and can help contain a fire should one start in the facility and use of surge protectors can help prevent one. These measures will keep everyone feeling happy and ensure the safety of the facility.
Facility Challenges During Holidays
There are two primary challenges that a facility manager needs to be concerned about during the holidays: potential security risks and sanitation.
Potential security risk
Security issues become rampant during the holiday’s, as more property crimes occur during the holidays. Updating facility security temporarily during the holiday’s is vital for ensuring the safety of the facility, employees, and occupants within it. Below are a few suggestions by Eliezer Workplace Management Limited:
- Building security should implement access control procedures. These typically include some combination of locked doors, badge access, the signing in and out of visitors, the escorting of visitors to and from their destinations, and policies prohibiting the propping open of doors that should be kept closed and locked and establishing of code word to signal for help. The exact needs vary with the facility and industry and not a “one size fits all” policy but as a general principle when the office population starts to decline the area should be locked and put back on access control.
- Implement people management policies; Holidays have been known to bring along with it apart from feelings of joy; stress, depression and anxiety which may make people prone to intense mood swings, angry outbursts, impulsive behaviours. They might be scattering things or frolicking around uncontrollably but not physically violent still this does not stop them from being a danger to themselves, others, and the facility.
- Prioritize and protect critical tools and data; data and equipment’s should be stored and kept safe. Data and records can be kept in locked cabinets inside locked rooms but preferably new technology like the cloud should be used.
Sanitation and health management
This challenge arises because of facilities being overused and this necessitates more frequent cleaning and repairs, health warning signs, sanitation products, additional cleaning solutions. Facility management companies must handle an excess of cleaning, maintenance, and other challenges to achieve optimum operations standard during holidays.
Facility management requires quick thinking as there are always unique circumstances like the holiday’s that need to be prepared for, that is why at “Eliezer” our facility managers have been trained to be agile while keeping up with industry best standard, so that they are knowledgeable about your facilities, your challenges, and your limits.