5 Best Practices for FM Request Management
Facilities management require managers to be both proactive and reactive. Good strategic planning helps keep facilities organized, but responding to an array of requests is a crucial responsibility that keeps a space adaptive to new problems as they come up.
Effective request management allows you to recognize and correct problems quickly while keeping open lines of communication throughout your team. To do this right, facility managers can follow these best practices.
1. Create informed users
Facility requests can get out of hand if users don't come to you with the necessary information, making your ability to communicate your services highly important.
Prepare a clear and organized list of possible service requests a user can make and let them know what kind of information they need to have ready before contacting you.
By communicating this list through different channels—including an online directory, an e-mail blast or team meetings that review request protocols—you'll ensure your team receives the information they need.
2. Pick the right tech
IT ticketing systems or e-mail might help with your request process, but they aren't necessarily ideal choices. Use facility-specific tools to consolidate your requests and avoid repeating manual tasks. They'll also help you avoid needless features that add complexity and make it harder to train new hires. Consider how your choice of technology fits with common requests like room bookings and inventory use.
A robust facility management system integrates request tools with other time-saving features that FMs can benefit from on a daily basis, like visual mapping of the office and streamlining work orders.
3. Emphasize good delegation
Request prioritization and assignment is a key component of request systems. Create parameters that determine how requests are prioritized and who will be in charge of addressing them. For instance, you can establish different priority levels to help you quickly categorize services and handle tickets accordingly.
An effective request management system will have past data on request frequency, resource availability and facility emergencies to help inform these stages.
Having a framework setup helps you instill consistency in your team and allows you to make fewer on-the-spot decisions that could lead to mistakes.
4. Provide user updates
Letting users know about the status of their requests makes your communication processes smoother and helps you track your request performance at each stage. Keeping users updated also enables them to understand how your request management process works, which can lead to a more efficient system in the future.
5. Track diligently
Gathering and presenting data about your request management process allows you to constantly improve your systems and give key company stakeholders a more transparent look into your performance. Tracking metrics like request frequency, time estimates, delays and seasonal differences can help you anticipate issues before they come up, which means you can effectively use your available resources.
Managing requests can be an overwhelming task that puts facility managers on their heels if efficient processes aren't in place. Ultimately, strong request management comes down to understanding users and their needs. Facility managers who develop an effective system will contribute to a more resilient and adaptive working environment.