The success of many organisations is a result of facility management practices. Facility professionals ensure that company services are up-and-running, and the staff are comfortable performing at optimal productivity levels. They are undoubtedly the backbone of any organisation.
Effective facilities management improvement strategies start with understanding the needs of your workspace and how they help to achieve your business goals. In addition, it encompasses the processes of merging facility management and facility planning for long term purposes.
But most real estate trends and technology are unravelling new ways of managing workspaces. For instance, the Internet of Things is gaining more popularity. Facility managers need to be abreast of the latest trends to provide innovative solutions that achieve the best results. Outlined below are eight vital strategies to incorporate into your facilities management strategy.
Best Facilities Management Improvement Strategies To Increase Efficiency
1. Create An Automated And Streamlined Workflow
Facility professionals are tasked with everything, from managing the security to running the facility system. Getting everything in order can be monotonous and inefficient. One way to reduce or eliminate human errors in the management process is to create an automated workflow. Of course, cumbersome control systems can increase costs, time and risks. But an automated and streamlined workflow aids a significant increase in facility efficiency. With this, managers can control the complex tasks in a building from a single place with minimal human intervention. It makes the job of facility managers more efficient.
For instance, access control is a security tool most organisations use to protect assets and files. Through automation, facility managers can add or revoke access by simply changing the status on the building’s automation system.
Also, you can automate HVAC to operate based on facility occupancy. This improves facility energy efficiency and improves team productivity.
2. Constantly Upgrade Facility Equipment And Assets To Increase Efficiency
One of the vital responsibilities of a facilities manager is looking out for the latest equipment that is energy-efficient and will make a significant impact on the building. Asset management is essential and has proven vital in optimising operational performance.
When you lose track of repair or maintenance dates, it’s probably high time to invest in more efficient models. This will save time and yield a 30-40% return on investment (ROI).
For instance, a cost-effective method will be upgrading the HVAC system in the building. They are responsible for over 40% of energy consumption. An upgrade means improved indoor air quality and a better work environment for your employees. Thus, this will improve productivity, reduce utility bills, and improve work output.
Another option to consider is upgrading the lighting system. Most times, the lights are left on even after working hours. Replacing traditional bulbs with energy-saving ones is an improved and cost-effective strategy.
Some facilities management companies also invest in sustainable methods such as renewable energy sources. This results in a significant decrease in energy consumption and utility bills.
3. Embrace Sustainable Facilities Management Practices
73% of millennials prefer products and services from sustainable brands. Sustainable facilities management service includes the processes that enable facility managers to make relevant changes that reduce the effect of facility operations on the environment. This encompasses many practices, including low greenhouse emissions generation, energy management, waste recycling, etc.
In 2020, Nigeria was ranked 160 on the world SDG (sustainable development growth) index. With over a thousand buildings in the country, facilities managers play a huge role in facilitating sustainability. Some a few eco-friendly tips to start with are:
- Adopt recycling practices
- Purchase energy-efficient assets and equipment
- Use eco-friendly cleaning supplies
- Reduce energy consumption
- Conduct sustainable analysis
- Go paperless
- Set a sustainable goal.
4. Adopt Smart Technologies
From using digital cameras to smart sensors, no doubt that technology is a crucial part of facilities management improvement service. Like most top facilities management companies, Eliezer group is already integrating advanced technology in their facilities management services to save time, energy, and resources.
Smart sensors, for instance, can measure several variables that are beyond the reach of humans manually. This wealth of data translates to different formats when plugged into the cloud. Platforms like Microsoft Azure are easy to read, helping facility managers make strategic decisions to create a more efficient building or workplace. The more variables you can measure, the more you can control.
Managing and maintaining systems in a building can be monotonous and, most times, confusing. When unprecedented issues arise, it aids reactive maintenance, eliminating the time for effective planning.
From automating procedures, maintaining a safe environment, and reducing downtime to saving operational costs, the Internet of Things (IoT) can give you the critical insights to help focus on improving a building.
However, FMs must have a working knowledge of these technological practices to keep the buildings and inhabitants at optimal performance.
5. Improve Waste Management Strategy And Recycling
Waste management is a vital part of every business methodology. BioEnergy Consult shared that only 20-30% of waste is recycled out of the millions of metric tonnes produced in Nigeria every year. This shows the need to improve waste management in the country.
Ineffective methods of managing waste can incur additional operational costs for your business and create an unhealthy environment. Areas such as Lagos State have an established waste management system, making it easy for organisations situated in Lagos to dispose of waste effectively.
The right waste management strategy could be any solution that helps you manage waste more efficiently. It could be implementing recycling policies or using modern waste machinery. To do this, follow these simple steps:
Step 1: Conduct A Waste Audit
Creating a waste audit will be the starting point if you prefer a zero-waste management policy. It’s vital to review your site and analyse the recycling practices you are currently using. A waste audit will give data on the waste generated from the site and how much can be recycled.
Step 2: Set Targets
You can primarily manage waste by utilising waste elimination strategies. Set key performance indicators to track your progress level. You can choose to eliminate unnecessary waste, reuse it if possible, and recycle after.
Step 3: Invest In Waste Management Machinery
Depending on the amount of waste produced per time, you can choose to invest in waste management machinery. This way, you can finally cut tax costs or money spent on labour.
Going by the above, you could use a waste management hierarchy. That is the perfect facilities management technique when applied simultaneously with waste management machinery. It helps save time and money and reduces waste production.
It is divided into five:
- Prevention: This stage focuses on maximising efficiency by preventing waste generation. Facilities can achieve this by using materials that can be recycled or reused.
- Preparing for reuse: Reuse prevents you from spending additional costs on acquiring new materials. For instance, you can choose to refill toner and printer partridges instead of purchasing a new one. Also, you can sell valuable waste as scrap to generate additional income.
- Recycling: This process involves converting waste materials to new products.
- Recovery: When recycling isn’t possible, business waste can be recovered using the following recovery methods: gasification, pyrolysis, incineration, anaerobic digestion, etc.
- Disposal: When all other methods aren’t possible, you can dispose of the waste. This is an unsustainable option because it can cause adverse environmental impacts.
6. Implement Preventive Maintenance (Pm) Plan
Poor management of assets can reduce an organisation’s production by 20%. As an FM, you need to ensure that your assets are maintained to prevent additional costs of repairs or the purchase of new equipment.
Preventive maintenance is regularly managing your equipment and assets to prevent unprecedented breakdowns or failure. PM is vital because it improves the reliability and durability of the equipment and reduces occurrences such as workplace accidents. Organisations implementing the PM plan have saved 12% on their annual maintenance expenses.
Two ways to perform preventive maintenance are:
- Usage-based maintenance: Usage-based maintenance is scheduled based on the rate you use equipment or assets. If you use preventive maintenance software for tracking, it will automatically create a date for a routine check.
- Calendar-based maintenance: This depends on the type of asset. It could be scheduled weekly, monthly, quarterly or yearly. As an FM, you can set up a time-based maintenance schedule to reduce the risks of reactive maintenance.
PM varies for different equipment. You can check the manufacturer’s manual to know the guidelines and standards for management. Or, you can follow the industry standards to determine the type of management needed.
However, creating and sticking to a PM schedule can be daunting, especially for FM overseeing many practices.
Utilise preventive maintenance software to automate schedules, identify the best time for replacement and keep a record for tracking. It helps simplify and streamline maintenance practices and eliminate the need for reactive maintenance.
7. Adopt Customised Facility Management Workflow Strategies
Facility professionals can go beyond the operational aspects of maintaining a building to provide a lasting holistic approach. But there’s no one-size-fits-all solution for facilities management practices. This is because every organisation has different assets and needs. As a facility manager, it’s vital to have a flexible or customisable workflow to fit the needs of the facilities you manage.
Creating a flexible workflow will help facility professionals track and measure vital details in their facility operations. This also makes available the proper tools needed to carry them out efficiently.
In addition, creating a customised facilities management workflow will help facility professionals focus on the crucial needs of an organisation. Through this, they improve the productivity of the workforce.
8. Upgrade Facilities Management & Maintenance Knowledge
Facilities management improvement strategies cannot be complete without constant upgrades and improvements.
Modern buildings require innovative facility management services to remain efficient. As new trends are introduced daily, FM has to be acclimated to the new normal by upgrading to recent innovations.
Whether integrating automated security systems to computer-managed facilities maintenance systems, you can incorporate the ideas outlined in this article to upgrade your current facility management service. You can also take facility management training from time to time to update your knowledge.