Facility management (FM) is facing a critical shortage of professionals and urgently needs to attract new talent, according to a new research report by the International Facility Management Association (IFMA) and the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS).
The report, called Raising the Bar: From Operational Excellence to Strategic Impact in FM, is in its third edition and was launched in Shanghai during the Annual Summit of the World Built Environment Forum, which took place 27 to 28 March 2017.
More than 2500 facility managers from around the world were surveyed as part of the research report. It calls for the FM profession to transform its “Cinderella” image to attract diverse new talent, as the average age of the workforce is currently 50.9 years.
The report also identified the need for an increased focus on the strategic impact of facility management as well as increased efforts to champion the benefits professionals can deliver in workplaces and to the people and organisations that use them.
[quote]“In the past, facility management has been seen as a Cinderella profession, which explains the problems in attracting and retaining new talent to replace professionals when they leave,” said UK Commercial Property Director Paul Bagust.[/quote]
[quote]“To challenge this image, we must increase our strategic focus and champion the ways in which facility management can enhance productivity in the workplace and show the vital role that FM professionals play in the workplace.”[/quote]
Bagust added that as working practises evolve in the digital age, facility managers will need new skills based on collaboration and forging interpersonal relationships.