Facility managers have a lot on their plate these days. Their jobs are vital to the functionality and experience of building occupants. As a result, they need to find effective solutions to their most pressing problems.
Every day brings a new set of challenges for facility managers to find unique solutions for. As a facility manager, it's your responsibility to ensure that the building and its services meet the needs of those that occupy it. From cleaning to parking and everything in-between, you have an important role to play in keeping a facility functioning at its best.
In this blog post, we'll be exploring 4 challenges that facility managers face and how to solve them:
1) Control Costs
Getting the buy-in and budget for building initiatives can sometimes be difficult. A facility manager must be resourceful in order to get things done within constrained budgets. You may be asked in a budget meeting to find ways to cut costs, and if you don’t have a strong grasp of how the funds are being spent currently, then it will reflect poorly on you.
Continuously finding ways to make the building run more cost-efficiently is a large part of a facility manager's role. However, it can be challenging to keep the facility maintained and operating at its best when you are being asked to do more and more, but with less money.
Investing in the right technology may be a larger upfront cost but can result in big cost savings down the line. Technology can automate different systems and provide data insights for where you can increase savings.
For example, consider investing in smart building technology to monitor building energy usage and improve energy savings for the building. This can reduce overall carbon emissions and the costs associated with using energy when it isn’t needed.
Explain to building owners how these funds can make a difference in the long-term health and operation of the building. They will be more likely to invest if they understand how this could positively affect their bottom line in the future.
2) Keep Your Facility Clean
As the facility manager, you need to prioritize the cleanliness of the buildings. Prioritizing this can extend the life of the building and provide a great first impression to those who enter it. By maintaining a clean facility, you're creating a pleasant experience for the occupants of the building, making it a place they can feel comfortable and enjoy spending time in.
More importantly, a clean environment reduces harmful bacteria to improve the health and wellness of the occupants. For those who work in the building, this can also help to increase productivity.
Try strategically placing trash and recycle bins in your facility. This will encourage more building occupants to throw out their garbage and recycling. By having these bins located throughout the building, it will make it easier for people to use them and contribute to an overall cleaner environment. Don't also forget to have outdoor trash and recycle bins too, maintaining your facility doesn’t just involve the inside of your building. It also involves the grounds surrounding your building.
Another way to keep your facility clean is by hiring a janitorial service provider to clean the facility regularly. Sometimes deeper cleanings may be required, such as carpet cleanings, so be sure you prioritize these as well.
3) Choose the Right Service Providers
From janitorial services to building security, you need to find the right service providers to help with the maintenance and safety of your facility. Can you trust your vendor to be reliable and professional? It's your responsibility to ensure that the vendors entering your facility won't threaten the safety of your building occupants and that your vendors are prepared to do the job they were hired to do at the highest quality.
The best way to choose the right service providers is to ask the right questions to see if they are the right fit:
- Do they have experience working in a similar facility?
- Are their workers bonded and do they complete background checks?
- Do they have flexible scheduling?
- Do they inspect the work of their team to confirm it’s done properly?
4) Maintain Equipment
It's critical to extend the life of your building's equipment and resources so that you don't need to replace them as frequently. Although, it may be more work for you upfront, finding a replacement and coordinating its installation will be more time-consuming. Replacing these big-ticket items can also be expensive, so it's important to be on top of their maintenance to keep them running as efficiently as possible.
Regularly scheduled appointments with maintenance service providers are the key to having everything running like a well-oiled machine. Create an effective maintenance schedule for the year. Talk to service providers to understand the needs of systems/machines in your facility such as your HVAC system and boiler. They will advise on how often these systems need to be serviced.
If you maintain your HVAC system or boiler consistently, you can delay replacing them down the line. Regular maintenance of these expensive items will lead to less of a headache later.