07 January 2019 | Martin Read
Martin Read looks ahead to two new beginnings in 2019.
Talk of new beginnings and causes for optimism are, of course, typical fare for January magazine comment columns. But this year I get to do so for two quite different, if associated, reasons.
Firstly, let's deal with the dawning of the new year. Interserve's woes were dominating the non-Brexit news agenda as 2018 ended; on our press day, the hope was that this high-profile construction-to-service firm's refinancing requirements were more manageable than the ultimately fatal issues that befell Carillion a year ago.
Fingers crossed that this indeed proves the case. Certainly the precarious nature of the company, its contracts and thus its employees is horrible for all concerned. Here's hoping cool heads and clever calculation prevail.
But it's the prospect of engagement from the national media - aware following Carillion of the world of facilities management - that provides a cause for new year optimism.
Here's a chance for major channels to see the Interserve story as evidence of a problematic pattern, accordingly offering an opportunity to give more attention and air space to its root causes. (Indeed, were it not for Brexit there may already have been a more visible national debate.) It's good to see the IWFM already engaging with the BBC and emphasising the issue of service value within contracts; perhaps 2019 will see the sea change in media perception that this debate, and this sector, so clearly deserves.
As for that second new beginning, well, FM World is now Facilitate, the magazine for workplace and facilities management professionals. Initial differences? You'll note us front-loading content aimed at individual performance ahead of market news, expanding upon research findings, and highlighting the IWFM's policy work. Over the coming months you'll also see us doing more work on how we present the information you need to do your job as effectively as possible.
In terms of initial impact, these are undoubtedly small and evolutionary changes. And we're obviously keen to get our readers' feedback. To which end, feel free to contact me on [email protected]. I'll be happy to hear your views. For now, on with the show
Martin Read is editor of Facilitate Magazine