A news round-up of stories in the FM sector
Organisation: Atalian Servest
Announcement: The global FM service provider Atalian Servest has announced that it has renewed its pledge to the Armed Forces Covenant to demonstrate its commitment and support to UK military personnel and veterans.
Description: The Armed Forces Covenant is a promise that those who serve and have served in the Armed Forces, and their families, will be treated fairly in society. As a signatory of the covenant, the company is committed to supporting its employees as reservists and veterans, recognising the unique skills and experiences that reservists and ex-service personnel bring to the organisation in its security, cleaning, catering, engineering, projects, integrated solutions and central support teams.
Details: The company is an active recruiter of ex-forces personnel and has a large ex-forces contingency throughout the business, across security, IT, project management, catering, electrical engineering, logistics and administration. Holly Ferneyhough (pictured above), business support manager and a former Lance Corporal of 3 Regiment Army Air Corps who served two tours in Afghanistan, joined Atalian Servest six years ago. She explained: “The Atalian Servest ‘family’ has supported me in the development of my career in facilities management. The training and assistance they have delivered have had a major impact in my transition to civilian life after eight years in the Army.”
Organisation: Thales in the UK
Partnership: Primary Engineer
Announcement: To coincide with National Engineering Day (3 November), the UK division of Thales Group, the global technology leader in the aerospace, transport, and defence and security markets, has partnered with educational not-for-profit organisation training group Primary Engineer to inspire the next generation of talent.
Description: As 50% of engineering firms reportedly find it difficult to recruit and retain those with the correct skills and knowledge, Thales in the UK recognises the importance of reaching young people at school age, to encourage them to consider careers in STEM (science technology, engineering and maths) and develop their skills from an early age, so it has become a National Partner for Primary Engineers Leaders Award Competition .
Details: Despite an increase in STEM undergraduates, 40% of employers are still reporting a shortage of graduates being one of the key barriers to recruitment –186,000 skilled engineers are needed annually until 2024 to plug the skills gap. The annual nationwide initiative, now in its 10th year, asks the question “If you were an engineer, what would you do?” and encourages pupils to identify problems in the world and come up with creative solutions – embedding creative problem-solving as a key part of being an engineer. The competition, open to all primary and secondary schools across the UK, looks to encourage and grow diverse young talent. As a National Partner, Thales’ technology and engineering professionals will be on hand to motivate pupils and help design their solutions to better our future.
Background: Alex Creswell, CEO of Thales in the UK, said: “Our team is looking forward to mentoring pupils during their journey and experiencing what the minds of tomorrow will come up with in response to some of the world’s most critical issues. It’s an excellent opportunity to inspire young people and help build some of the practical and cognitive skills they need to pursue an engineering career.” The Leaders Award competition is fully funded and accessible to all primary and secondary teachers in the UK. Details on how to register can be found at www.leadersaward.com.
Organisation: Bouygues Energies & Services
Announcement: Bouygues E&S, a global leader in energy, digital and industrial transformation has launched Orbiter, the first 360-degree online self-assessment tool on the market to help building owners assess their building’s performance to help them see the bigger picture.
Description: Building management is at the heart of any successful business operation. Over the past two years, the way we occupy and work within commercial buildings has transformed: more flexibly, collaboratively and digitally with a strong focus on sustainability. Bouygues E&S claims that by bringing together Purpose, People and Assets, Orbiter will support building owners’ strategic aims to achieve net zero ambitions to make them future-proof and fit for purpose.
Background: To ensure the tool achieved the desired outcome, Bouygues E&S piloted it with several clients, gaining ‘excellent feedback”.In several cases Orbiter helped to identify aspects of estates that are already up to standard and highlighted areas of the estate that hadn’t been addressed by other tools/initiatives for optimisation. More information can be found here: https://orbiter.bouygues-es.co.uk/
Organisation: Johnson Controls
Announcement: The global smart, healthy and sustainable buildings company announced this week (1 November) the latest Blueprint of the Future award-winners, comprising its second cohort of OpenBlue Pioneers.
Description: This group is being recognised for leadership in transforming the built environment with Johnson Controls OpenBlue digital technology. Johnson Controls and its OpenBlue suite of solutions are allowing customers to deliver breakthrough building performance, achieve sustainability and ensure advanced security.
Details: Johnson Controls said the latest recipients of the award have demonstrated global ambition across multiple industry sectors:
- Derwent London: The largest real estate investment trust in London has a portfolio of high-profile properties including the state-of-the-art White Collar Factory in the Tech City hub. Its commitment to sustainability is measured by ambitious plans to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2030 by reducing energy use, increasing renewable power usage and auditing its activities to slash carbon footprint. Derwent London is using OpenBlue Enterprise Manager to gather a wealth of fresh insights about building performance across estates on a single dashboard and OpenBlue Central Utility Plant to shrink the carbon footprint of its mechanical, electrical and water plant systems.
- Fiserv Forum multi-purpose arena and the city's Deer District, in Milwaukee, US, are icons of ingenuity rooted in sustainability and technological innovation. Powered by OpenBlue Healthy Buildings solutions and the Metasys® building automation system, Fiserv Forum advances the digital transformation of its smart building systems to deliver a best-in-class arena fan experience without sacrificing sustainability. Building operators oversee the complete footprint of Fiserv Forum from the Arena Operations Center, ensuring the security of players, talent, staff and attendees.
- The Museum of the Future, in Dubai, UAE, is an exhibition space for innovative and futuristic attractions, services and products. Standing 77m tall, the avant-garde façade is made of stainless steel and glass, consisting of 1,024 unique panels. Working with interior architects, Johnson Controls delivered advanced security that matched the innovative design. The building employs cutting-edge technologies including virtual and augmented reality and artificial intelligence to create an immersive experience for visitors.
- Microsoft's Beijing West campus undertook an energy-efficient pilot in keeping with China's pledge to achieve carbon neutrality by 2060, and Microsoft's Carbon Negative by 2030 ambition. In this pilot, Microsoft's real estate team migrated the applications and data storage of the different systems – power supply, building controls, energy management and smart management to the Microsoft Azure platform, creating a central, integrated ‘digital brain’ for the Campus. Using OpenBlue Enterprise Manager and Metasys, Microsoft streamlined efficient building management, improved the user experience and enjoyed a significant reduction in the energy use in daily operations.
- Intaleq, a Qatar-based solutions and services provider for the sports and entertainment industry, introduced the first-of-its-kind digital solution for the stadiums of the World Cup Qatar 2022. Powered by the Johnson Controls OpenBlue digital platform and Microsoft Azure, the solution for smart stadiums is using intelligence to transform eight World Cup venues into one connected digital space that helps customers with situational awareness and actionable insights at a much faster response rate compared to any traditional command centres.
Organisation: UK Power Networks
Announcement: UK Power Networks – the distribution network operator for electricity covering South East England, the East of England and London – is offering its field staff wide-ranging mental health support for Men’s Health Awareness Month this November (International Men's Day is on 19 November).
Description: The company has recognised that operational teams can find it more difficult than office-based staff to access support services. Field staff who spend most of their time on the road, fixing underground or overhead cables, are far more likely to find themselves working alone, such as being first on-site at an electrical fault, meaning they can risk feeling isolated.
Details: A series of wellbeing events across the East of England has begun, covering psychological safety, neurodiversity, mental health (by ex-Armed Services speakers) as well as occupational health advice. It is providing a safe and comfortable environment for colleagues to learn and share their emotions and experiences, with open discussions and signposting to support services as required. The initiative is designed to support the whole person and targets colleagues who in the field are at the sharp end of keeping the power flowing for customers. The company said that face-to-face workshops held so far have been well received and more events are planned before the end of the year.
Organisation: Bennett Hay
Announcement: Catering and hospitality provider Bennett Hay has achieved Planet Mark Certification – underlining its focus on reducing its environmental impact.
Description: Planet Mark is a respected international kitemark among businesses and real estate organisations. The certification follows company-wide staff engagement and pledges to reduce emissions and improve the firm’s carbon footprint, actions to contribute to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals. Ongoing audits will enable Bennett Hay to quantify and report on its environmental impact to clients, suppliers and internal stakeholders. Founded in 2010, the firm has strived to cut its carbon footprint by using seasonal and locally sourced provenance along with careful consideration of its supply chain. This new accreditation forms part of Bennett Hay’s wider ESG strategy and was awarded after robust measurement and identification of areas for continuing improvement.
Details: Through Planet Mark, Bennett Hay is helping with various philanthropy projects including protecting an area of endangered rainforest with Cool Earth, a charity working alongside rainforest communities to halt deforestation. Additionally, a charitable donation to The Eden Project has been made.
Background: Bennett Hay has contracts with some of London’s landmark workplaces including Landsec, Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP and Savills. The privately owned company has a reputation as one of the foremost employers in the hospitality industry through its exacting employee engagement strategy.
Organisation: Vertas Group
Announcement: The Vertas Group and its sponsors have created a tranquil space for Melton Primary School SEND students to find calm in a busy school day.
Description: The primary school in Woodbridge, Suffolk, has been provided with a wellbeing garden by the Vertas Group and Groundwork East. Vertas, which has head offices in Suffolk. The garden was built during the October half-term and funded by volunteers from Vertas Group companies, including Vertas, Concertus Design and Property Consultants and specialist supply teaching agency Opus Teach.
Details: Spending time in green space or bringing nature into students’ everyday life can benefit both mental and physical wellbeing. The school wanted to offer the children a chance to connect with nature and give them a space to recharge and learn life skills surrounded by scented herbs, flowers, and water features. It wanted an area that the children could be proud of, which is why students will assist in planting and nurturing some areas of the garden now that it is complete.
Background: The project also received many kind donations from the Group’s local suppliers and contractors, including;
- TNS Melton
- Morgan Sindall Construction
- Brock FMD Limited
- Barnes Construction
- Brooks & Wood Ltd
- SR Calver
Organisation: Marks and Spencer
Announcement: M&S is launching a new flexible working offering – Worklife – to provide more choice and flexibility for its store colleagues.
Description: The changes are designed to help existing colleagues achieve a better work/life balance, as well as help M&S to continue to attract the best talent in the industry.
Details: The retailer has worked with its National Business Involvement Group to arrange:
- Flexible working options: from January, more than 3,000 M&S retail managers will have additional flexible working options available to choose from. As well as opting for either full-time or part-time hours, managers can choose whether to spread their hours over five days or to work a four-day compressed week or nine-day compressed fortnight.
- -Launch of Job Share Finder: a new approach to make flexible working easier for those colleagues able to job-share. The platform enables colleagues, across stores and support centres, to upload a bio and connect with potential job share matches. The idea originated from colleagues at M&S’s International Women’s Day Ideathon in March earlier this year, inspired by those returning from maternity leave and wanting more flexibility.
Organisation: Compass Group UK & Ireland
Announcement: Compass Group UK & Ireland’s Healthcare division has teamed up with Dr Rupy Aujla of ‘The Doctor's Kitchen’ to bring a healthy pop-up food concept to five of its partner hospitals’ Wellspring Restaurants. The one-week trial at each hospital aims to benefit staff and visitors.
Description: Dr Rupy is an NHS GP who educates people about food and the medicinal impact of eating well. He creates healthy recipes, using carefully selected ingredients, alongside clinical research to formulate his meals. After gaining popularity with his online blog, he started the Doctor’s Kitchen Podcast, which has had more than 12 million downloads, and he has written three books.
Details: The project launched at The Royal Surrey County Hospital’s Wellspring Restaurant, followed by Addenbrookes. The events presented recipes and Dr Rupy talked to those working in the restaurants, as well as the hospital staff. The pop-up events will now go to Barnet, Northwick Park and Bradford hospitals. The concept includes a range of fresh and seasonal salads made at the counter, as well as curries and stews. Dr Rupy worked closely alongside Compass Healthcare’s team to formulate the menus on offer.
Background: The Compass Healthcare team provides hospital food at 23 NHS trusts across the UK, through the Steamplicity offer. The team also works with 75 NHS trusts operating more than 200 retail outlets and visitor restaurants.