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17 January 2019
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Turn and face the strange – Changes 

Peter Brogan
Peter Brogan, research and information manager at BIFM

25 February 2016 | Peter Brogan

There is no question that 2016 will be an exciting year for BIFM and the FM industry. Looking back on last year, it was not only an exciting year for BIFM, but also one that saw more advances across the facilities management sector.

The FM field continues to evolve over a number of strategic, tactical, human and technological factors.

To find out how the FM industry is evolving, our own BIFM FM Business Confidence Monitor is establishing itself as an important pulse check for the facilities management industry, capturing a picture of FM market confidence by canvassing views of the sector’s senior decision-makers and the teams delivering those services on the ground throughout the UK.

This year we have included new questions around the impact of the new National Living Wage. I am eager to understand how the FM sector thinks the mandatory pay increase from April 2016 will affect them, as estimates claim that more than a million workers in the UK aged 25 and over will benefit from the wage increase.

In my last comment piece I mentioned the word ‘change’; it instantly reminded me of the book Who Moved My Cheese?, and certainly the cheese is being moved for the FM sector. There is no doubt that technology will have a major impact on the sector where data and benchmarking will be paramount. However, as more FM companies get a better understanding of their spend, many are now interested in learning if this spend is ‘appropriate.’ What’s appropriate? For example, how does that spend compare against other similar companies or industry standards? The FM spend against appropriate benchmarks will further empower facilities managers to better control that spend and drive improved performance across their organisations.

Another change on the horizon for facilities management in 2016 is the maintenance of Building Information Models (BIM). From its further integration into CAFM software through to the role of Soft Landings, it has the opportunity to really put FM at the heart of optimal building design and operational support. 

With the role of FM evolving every year, it made me pause for a moment to think about people who have what is known as a growth mindset who are constantly monitoring what’s going on. Certainly they’re sensitive to positive and negative information, but they’re attuned to its implications for learning and constructive action: What can I learn from this? How can I improve? Therefore, the word change can either be embraced or feared by people.

As mentioned earlier the economic, environmental and technological conditions continue impacting the evolution of the FM sector, there’s one thing we know for sure. The FM sector will continue to be one of change and this certainly should not be feared but embraced.

Turn and face the strange.

Peter Brogan is research and information manager at the BIFM