Facilities Management Trends: What 2015 Will Bring

David Spence
December 23rd, 2014

Facilities Management Trends for 2015

Smart Buildings

New technology providing FMs with critical information can be used to provide a comfortable and safe environment. Technology has now advanced to the point where it can alert an FM to oncoming equipment failures, track space use among employees and remind FMs to perform routine maintenance on an asset. This will allow FMs to control and maintain their buildings like never before.

Pushing Real Estate Analytics

Smart buildings are signaling an entirely new way of approaching FM. However, in spite of these advances, the C-suite has yet to fully grasp the importance of the data they provide, according to a study commissioned by Jones Lang LaSalle. Summarizing the study’s findings, FMLink writes that “only 28 percent of CRE [corporate real estate] teams consider themselves to be data-centric. This figure is set to double to 56 percent over the next three years.” The faster facilities managers help executive leadership connect the dots between real estate data and a company’s profit and productivity, the more competitive a business will be.

More Collaboration

As facilities and technology become more integrated, says Ehrenberg, staff members specializing in each will come in increased contact with one another. Facilities that implement smart building technology will require even more collaboration between FM and IT than was once required; for building operations to run smoothly, cross-training and support for both departments will be critical. Meanwhile, HR will continue to be an important partner for FM, since providing the right conditions for mobile working and productive output is a concern for both departments.

Long-term Sustainability

FMLink also reports that long-term sustainability is also on many professionals minds, based on a recent survey conducted by sustainability management company Ecova. The survey found that these eco-minded professionals are taking a long-term view of sustainability, planning projects that are time-intensive but ultimately cost-effective. According to the survey, 57 percent of those surveyed believe their organization will spend more time or money on sustainability in the coming year. By doing the same and thinking in the long-term, facilities managers can not only cut down on their companies’ expenses, they can also ensure they adhere to the ever-changing standards of environmental responsibility.

Smart buildings are the way of the future, and their presence can be felt not only by FMs but also everyone from their colleagues in IT to their superiors in the C-suite. Of course, sustainability has been and continues to be another important concern in reducing environmental impact and cutting costs. It will be exciting to see how these trends develop throughout the year and make facilities management the challenging, interesting and varied field that it is. But again, this is one prediction among many possibilities. What do you think will be the biggest concerns for FMs in the coming year?

photo credit: Tim Dorr via photopin cc