The projects chosen for the Covid Response category in the IWFM awards had "a structured response" to the pandemic and showed how facilities management enabled other areas of the business it was working within, according to the judges of the awards.
Julie Kortens, Chair of Judges of the IWFM Impact Awards told Facilitate that as the shortlisting panel worked through the entries four distinct groups began to emerge when the awards were being compiled.
She said: "Keeping good work going seemed to sum up the examples concerned with maintaining productive and connected working environments safely and mindfully when so many are working remotely and in diverse circumstances.
"Supporting the wider community showed us teams demonstrating impact by leading, supporting or repurposing through projects large and small. On the COVID frontline demonstrated critical acts of creation or keeping a building, asset or people safe, secure and operational during the lockdown. Adapting to new realities projects demonstrated excellence in managing and maintaining key relationships or commitments."
She said the eventual winners fitted those types, and they had other defining characteristics too. These included:
- A structured response to the issue they were addressing, plus an element of scale, pace or even jeopardy.
- They all showed FM leading or enabling other areas of the business, clear in the Lloyds Banking and Mitie examples as well as the University of Greenwich.
- All four winners have also shown eternal impact beyond the organisation itself, perfectly demonstrated in the Edmonton Green story where the FM function pivoted to a wider purpose to help the community.
- There was also a sense in both this and the NHS property services win, of a breakthrough beyond the workaday, for the profile and impact of the workplace and facilities function.
- Finally, the University of Greenwich example shows how a nimble adaptation of an initiative or major contact led to a great outcome for all parties.
Kortens said: “Understanding the winning characteristics and celebrating the winners can really help us to understand and learn from what makes them stand apart. We can use their examples as an inspiration to others in the sector to build back stronger and better; to inspire young people to choose workplace and facilities management as a career; and encourage everyone involved to move our profession forward, which is really what our awards is all about: definitely beyond the quotidian.”