Facilities Management- Turning a Threat Into an Opportunity

According to The Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment there has been 226% increase in the number of redundancies in May 2009 in comparison to the same time in 2008, which is a shocking statistic. You may well be secure in your current role but the reality is that most people will know someone that has been affected by the recent wave of redundancies. To date, there aren’t many sectors that have been left unscathed.

That said and on a more positive note, facilities management is currently one of the fastest growing professions in the UK. Facilities manager jobs encompass a wide range of activities within the built environment of an organisation and the management of their impact upon people and the workplace. At a corporate level, this role contributes to the delivery of strategic and operational criteria and goals. On a day-to day level, effective facilities management provides a safe and productive working environment, which is essential to the performance and success of any business – whatever its size and scope.

Within the field of facilities management, the number of qualified professionals has continued to steadily increase. Although the competition from skilled immigrants entering the UK has also grown in conjunction, it certainly isn’t all doom and gloom. Recruiters specialising in facilities manager jobs are now seeing employers actively recruiting, with a much higher number of temporary and permanent roles in facilities management available.

Many organizations, particularly in the health and education sector, are keen to capitalise on the glut of quality facilities management candidates that may not have moved or been available in more prosperous times. Some of these burgeoning areas have shown a definite increase in demand for candidates in the facilities management function. For instance, in the NHS, all Trusts have to be actively working to reduce their carbon footprint by 2010 and have consequently been seeking facilities management professionals with this particular skill-set. This has been reflected across the market where there has been a distinct rise in roles that require experience within energy management. Many Trusts have large targets to cut their utilities, not only for environmental reasons but also to make much needed cost savings.

Given the diversity within facilities manager jobs, there is often scope for career development for individuals from a wide variety of backgrounds. There are industry qualifications, but don’t let not having these put you off, as facilities manager jobs offer the chance to transfer and utilize existing skills and strengths in many ways. Experience in construction, property, project management and cost management are all relevant, as are people management and communication skills. Technical abilities that can be applied in a wider facilities and service setting can be a great combination within facilities management. With a current key focus around sustainability and the environment and targets relating to that, knowledge and understanding of energy efficiency is also a big plus. So whether you are safe in your job, considering a move, or may be facing redundancy, do not despair, but take a closer look at what you could bring to a facilities manager job and of course, what it could potentially offer you!

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The author works for a company specialised in charity fundraising jobs, railway jobs and NVQ assessor jobs.

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