14 July 2014
At our Annual General Meeting (AGM), held on 10 July, we looked back on a year that has seen us stabilise and begin to grow the institute.
Strong financial performance coupled with developments in key areas of the business mean that we find ourselves in a healthy position - one to build on.
The AGM was a chance for us to look at the successes of the previous year and highlight some of the progress we've already made at the start of 2014. We saw in the presentations that a number of initiatives are helping us to deliver a professional body fit for the 21st century - and it's vital that we do.
We can't ignore the fact that many professional bodies are undergoing an evolution. The world of work is changing beyond recognition with many of the services provided by traditional membership organisations having to compete with the growth of digital technology. How we consume information, network with our colleagues, or find answers to burning questions has undergone a radical change - meaning that professional bodies need to adapt and develop their offer to ensure that they stay relevant to the profession they represent.
We are not talking about small change; we need to assess our entire offering and ensure that we are supporting not only our members, but also the profession as a whole through the products and services we provide.
However, despite this radical shift the core purpose that sits at the heart of our professional body does not differ. We are here to support, develop, and represent the profession and those that work within it. That is to say we must provide FM with a collective voice as well as supporting FMs in their day-to-day roles.
Last year we published our mission, vision and values. This was a result of work carried out to shape and hone our purpose so we can begin to refine our activity to deliver against that core purpose. In the early part of 2014 we have already begun to see tangible examples of that work. Our Th!nkFM conference, ITN Productions partnership, the publication of our professional standards and our soon-to-be-launched website.
All of these and more are focused on supporting our long-term aspirations.
We know that the FM industry is not only a significant contributor to the economy, employing thousands of individuals, but also that the practice of FM itself is crucial to the successful performance of organisations across all sectors.
This, combined with a clearly defined purpose, means that we are on the verge of something special and we're looking forward to celebrating, challenging and developing the profession as we begin to realise its potential as well as ensuring that it is placed firmly on the leadership agenda.
James Sutton is chief operating officer at BIFM