Professional Facility Solutions
Professional FM as an interdisciplinary business function has the objective to coordinate demand and supply of facilities and services within public and private organizations. The term “Facility” (pl. facilities) means something that is built, installed or established to serve a purpose, which, in general, is every “Tangible asset that supports an organization.” Examples are real estate property, buildings, technical infrastructure, (HVAC), lighting, transportation, IT-services, furniture, Custodial, grounds, and other user-specific equipment and appliances.
The European standard for facilities management defines it as “the integration of processes within an organization to maintain and develop the agreed services which support and improve the effectiveness of its primary activities.”
The International Organization for Standardization will publish the first two international standards relating to facilities management in 2017. A recent ISO article outlines what is being done within this committee including the development of a Management System Standard for Facilities Management see.
FM covers these two main areas: ‘Space & Infrastructure’ (such as planning, design, workplace, construction, lease, occupancy, maintenance and furniture) and ‘People & Organisation’ (such as catering, cleaning,ICT, HR, accounting, marketing, hospitality). These two broad areas of operation are commonly referred to as “hard FM” and “soft FM”. The first refers to the physical built environment with focus on (work-) space and (building-) infrastructure. The second covers the people and the organisation and is related to work psychology and occupational physiology. According to the International Facility Management Association (IFMA): “FM is the practice of coordinating the physical workplace with the people and work of the organization. It integrates the principles of business administration, architecture and the behavioral and engineering sciences.” In a 2009 Global Job Task Analysis, IFMA identified the core competencies of facility management as: