Making the Most of What You Have in Facilities Management
I was sitting in a café in Brisbane and we were having an end of week catch up with my office.
As I was enjoining my tea, I noticed the interesting way the coffee shop was built into the corner of the building and how it utilised every part of the space. Someone came up with the idea of making the most of an odd shaped lobby and thought “Hey, I know how we can add value to this building, we could fit a café in here”
You are probably thinking this is an odd thing to be thinking about when you are enjoying a cup of tea, but being a recruiter in the Facilities and Building Services Environment, I spend a lot time with professionals that live and breathe the workings of a commercial building. Recently the same thing has been said to me over and over when I am speaking with my clients about prospective new employees, in particular the utilisation of the existing space.
Looking from a Facilities Management view point, someone who has continuous innovative and a forward thinking development ideas towards an asset is what a lot of business are telling me they want in their next Facilities/Asset Manager. A facilities manager ensures that an organisation has the most suitable working environment for its employees and their activities and is constantly under pressure to reduce costs and add value to the core business.
Gone is the appeal of having a reactive Facilities Manager who sits by the phone and waits for things in the building to break, who only looks after the core aspects of keeping a building running.
What is becoming more important, is a Manager who can think of a wider range of activities such as non-core functions. A person who can step back and look at every inch of the existing building, not only as a physical structure but as a valuable asset. My clients are telling me that they want a person who has the ability to think “How can we utilise this space more effectively, that will add value!”
A small example of this is on one of the side streets in Brisbane, there is a Barista stand/coffee shop literally cut into the wall of an office building. The building has been in use for quite a few years, but this coffee shop was built in very recently. The Facilities /Asset Manager came up with the idea that if they were to utilise the wasted space in the lobby, create access from the side of the building in the alley, cut out a space big enough to fit in the coffee machine and a workable space for staff, whallaa! A new space that a business can now move into and rent = Value added!
Not only did the Facilities/Asset manager turn the wasted space into a desirable place to have a coffee shop, it ultimately added value to the asset and maximised otherwise wasted space.
It is this exact quality that makes a Facilities Professional stand out from the rest!
What clients are asking for in a Facilities Management Professional:
- Modern and Progressive
- Pro-active not just re-active
- Commercially minded
- Innovative with ideas of how to maximize the existing space
- Knowing their assets inside and out and starting the conversation with their existing team
- Think outside the normal constraints for the building