24 May 2017 | Herpreet Kaur Grewal
Facilities managers have an opportunity to play a larger role between landlords and tenants about what end users need in their workplaces, delegates at the Smart Buildings 2017 conference heard yesterday.
Doug Lowrie, global workplace product manager at Microsoft, told attendees at the one-day event in Paddington, that, "if something needs fixing the FM is contacted and they fix the issue but it stops there".
He said there was no getting to the root of the problem.
"There's no one asking how likely is it that the problem will reoccur, looking at trends over time, over countries, over regions. Is this a systemic problem that happens across the world? FM providers are mostly global and they are major service providers to multinationals. I think they have a bigger part to play in having that global view which distils the typical trends and bringing them to the surface for both landlords and to the end users. I think FM has an opportunity there."
He said by doing so it would give landlords access to data that would help to make their buildings more attractive to prospective tenants.
"[Landlords] are building buildings to be profitable and by doing that by maximising floor plates, densities, etc. If they are not careful they will miss the boat because tenants are looking for buildings that make their employees more comfortable and more productive, have a certain energy and they are using real estate from a talent attraction point of view.
"Tenants want to be in buildings that are inspiring but that also work and have a soul to them. Landlords need to enter that discussion to know what those goals are and start building buildings that respond to that and no longer be this high-rise of the same stack of floor plates, same ceiling-to floor-heights - a generic model."