Best Practices in Facilities Management for 2020

Facility management has always been key for industry across the board. But this has never been truer than in the drastically altered landscape we are seeing today as the world tries to get back some semblance of normalcy after the impact of COVID-19. To maintain budget adherence and disaster readiness through the rest of the year, managers need to start following these top five best practices in facilities management and know how they involve integrated process management and visibility in operations throughout 2020.

1. Continuing Mergers of IT and Facilities Management Will Require More Training Among Staff and Real-Time Transparency

Any return-to-work plan needs to be based on strong lines of communication and transparency among all involved parties. Successful work strategies are rooted in strong lines of communication, successful management practices, and trustworthy transparency. Training is also paramount to ensure IT services and routine facilities management practices go as planned. The continuing mergers of IT and facilities management systems will inevitably lead to more technology and increased visibility into activities, which continue to build on subsequent best practices in facilities management too. 

2. Implement a Predictive Maintenance Management Program

Predictive maintenance techniques are specially designed to help facility managers determine the condition of in-service equipment, so it is easier to estimate when maintenance is needed and to prevent unplanned time. Of all best practices in facilities management, this approach promises cost savings over the more traditional set time schedule for preventive maintenance. The rationale is simple. Because tasks are performed when it is needed before a disruption occurs, costs are generally lower. A properly functioning predictive maintenance management program reveals when signs indicate a malfunction is inevitable and affords freedom to choose the best time to address shutdown-requiring processes to avoid disruption entirely.

3. Rethink Space Utilization to Be Conducive to Remote Work Capabilities and COVID-19 Precautions

Some leading best practices in facilities management for 2020 come straight from the World Health Organization, which has published guidelines known as physical distancing. Physical distancing describes maintaining a safe distance while workers return to a semi-normal work routine. Whether this is in face-to-face office and warehouse interactions or a continuation of remote working, the importance of space utilization only grows.  In-person workspaces will need to be designed for safety while allowing for open communication. And remote workers will still need to be connected and feel like the important team members that they are. This can all affect work capabilities and is something that needs to be considered and addressed when facility members think about how to utilize their available space, protect their workers, and adapt to the new COVID-19 workplace.

4. Utilize a Computerized Maintenance Management System (CMMS)

For a growing number of industries today, the traditional workplace is being replaced through virtual, remote work capabilities. And keeping track of the volume and status across all work orders regardless of location remains a top priority. Remember that a CMMS is used to manage physical facility work orders. But while networking management is great and essential to offering these remote work capabilities for non-essential personnel, the true value of a CMMS is found in those essential workers. 

Meanwhile, the essential processes to managing maintenance in facilities that cannot close or offer remote work capabilities, like installation of safety shields or continuing physical improvements to the brick and mortar space that can enhance safety, will define the ability to succeed going forward. Additionally, working with other field service vendors and technicians may prove challenging as some workers stay away from the facility. But again, sharing data within the CMMS streamlines that process. Remember that not everything can be remote, but it is possible to manage maintenance remotely, sourcing field service vendors, completing payment for services rendered, and integrating renovations with other facility needs.

5. Take Advantage of Outsourcing Where Appropriate

Partnering with integrated facilities management is the way of the future. It is becoming increasingly popular among many industries today and the push to get back to some semblance of normal is met with the realization that many things may have well been permanently altered. In turn, more facilities managers may turn to outsourcing or staff augmentation services to find field service vendors and streamline processes. Even prior to the pandemic, the trend was set, and as explained by McKinsey & Company Operations, “the global market for in-house and outsourced facilities management is estimated to reach $1.9 trillion by 2024. The outsourced segment accounts for more than half the total and has attracted a growing number of vendors with new service offerings.” 

Choose a Partner That Can Offer All the Best Practices in Facilities Management Now

The right partner should be easy to find, but that doesn’t mean you will find the right partner immediately. Take the time to think about what your business needs and how the best practices in facilities management must align with the vendor’s services. Additionally, start following the tips now to prepare for success in your facilities through the remainder of 2020 and beyond.

J Glasglow, MCR

J Glasglow, MCR

As Senior Vice President of Solutions Development for Cushman & Wakefield Global Occupier Services, J Glasgow partners with corporate occupiers of real estate to develop integrated real estate, facility, project and operational management programs designed to improve processes, manage risk while significantly reducing total cost of occupancy. J’s background includes more than 20 years of experience in diverse commercial and corporate real estate disciplines such as, account leadership, and management, facility and operational planning, project management and strategic portfolio optimization. J has advised global clients from a broad range of market sectors encompassing financial, insurance, healthcare, bio-science, engineering, and consumer goods companies that encompass, office, industrial and manufacturing portfolios. With a diverse background in corporate real estate planning, facility management and project management, J has leveraged savings for his clients of over $313 million dollars while aligning with their overall business strategy and mission.