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Effective Facility Management: 7 Habits that Maximize Efforts

| July 28, 2022 | By

Facility managers define their operations by creating the foundation and processes, developing their team’s talent, and bringing goals to fruition. But what does it take to be a truly effective facility manager?

You might be thinking that it’s a surface-level concept. Doing well in factors such as training your team members and achieving perfect compliance ratings is commendable, but we wouldn’t have written this article if we thought that was enough.

Purposeful details, actions, and habits are the foundation of management best practices. But some questions still need to be answered:

  • How do you ensure you become a highly effective manager?
  • What are the specific measures you need to take?
  • How can they result not only in cost savings but also in profits to your bottom line?
  • How do you ensure you can continue to increase profit?

Keep reading; we’re going to lay it all out for you.

Highly Effective Facility Managers Are Habitual Planners

Everyone knows the benefits of planning, but whether or not a plan is executed properly is another question—especially when it comes to property maintenance management. 

Planning is considered by some to be a “necessary evil,” and while they might be right, those who neglect a preventive maintenance plan and simply wait for the next piece of equipment to break have to waste valuable resources to fix the equipment.

With a little focus and an understanding of the small yet powerful actions you can take to achieve operational effectiveness, you’ll have proactive operations in no time.

You need to:

  • Reduce your operational and equipment downtime.
  • Reduce costs associated with completing your maintenance activities and tasks.

It’s simple really, and it affects your overall production.

Now that you understand the importance of necessary effectiveness, we’re going to outline the habits of highly effective facility managers. Don’t worry—the habits aren’t rocket science, and they really work. 

Here’s how you can act today:

7 Ways to Become Highly Effective

1. Automate the work order process.

When you automate the work order process, you remove human error associated with it. 

Taking the people out of the process and ensuring nothing gets missed or overlooked allows you to create, track, edit, and automatically communicate work orders for your facility.

Don’t let problems with employees slow down your operations or increase workplace stress for others.

2. Develop checklists for completing all types of work throughout your facility.

Organizations such as Toyota use checklists to introduce lean management strategies into their process. You can make using checklists for all your work types a routine to give you ultimate control and consistency over maintenance activities.

For example, say you need a fire extinguisher inspection—your checklist might look like this:

  1. Ensure the fire extinguisher is easily accessible.
  2. Make it easy to see when it’s needed.
  3. Check the tamper seal.
  4. Check the pull pin.
  5. Check the pressure.
  6. Look for physical damage.

How difficult would it be to miss something now?

You can use checklists for something as common as a fire extinguisher inspection or as complex as a unique process for your work environment.

Most professional managers use them. You’ll want to as well.

3. Put inventory tracking in place.

Top-notch managers always have a streamlined inventory tracking system in place through their maintenance management software.

Whenever it’s time to reorder material or equipment, without question, you need a management system that will alert you so that you never run out of what you need and can buy it at the best price.

4. Produce schedules for work to be done.

Preventive maintenance plan scheduling changes the playing field. With the availability of innovative solutions, the presence of highly effective facility managers throughout the industry is growing.

With the huge number of moving parts to deal with, how do you ensure your maintenance efforts are proactive? You use a preventive maintenance plan to create, track, and manage facility maintenance schedules. In fact, some systems give you the ability to track maintenance activities in a calendar format with the drag-and-drop ability to change dates.

Creating a well-thought-out scheduling process puts you at the top of the facility management mountain. You’ll have a global view of your routine maintenance, all associated materials, and equipment. Now you can see who’s doing what and make necessary changes as needed, allowing you to achieve proactive operations.

5. Ensure all work is completed on time and as scheduled.

This habit doesn’t need an explanation, but making sure it happens isn’t always possible without the right set of procedures and facility management software.

Put your preventive maintenance plan in place and automate your work order system to take manual task management efforts out of the equation.

6. Proactively inspect equipment for additional work to be completed.

Inspecting equipment may very well be a part of your preventive maintenance plan, but it goes deeper when you are in the practice of being proactive. Systems for conducting equipment inspections allow you to institute a process for keeping an eye on things all the time.

For example, if a construction project took place near an air handler, it would help to check the filter, even if scheduled maintenance is coming up. You might identify a broken piece of material that needs to be fixed that day.

Being proactive can reduce downtime and keep you and your facility looking good.

7. Digitally document details of all work for historical reference.

It goes without question: You can’t be effective or manage what you don’t measure because you can’t control what you can’t measure.

As a professional, you have access to the most progressive systems in the marketplace. These systems offer access to comprehensive statistics and maintenance data through extensive and robust reporting for your specific management needs.

Why not get all of the valuable info you need to be a highly effective manager?

Use these insights to increase your operational efficiency and effectiveness as a manager and to achieve proactive operations.

Start These Habits Today

We always want to provide you with the best information in the industry. We do it so that you’ll look good to your boss and peers. 

Will you make these habits part of your life?

Find out how you can make these habits part of your life with a free demo of our comprehensive facility management software!

Editor's note: This post was originally published in May 2015 and has been updated for comprehensiveness and freshness.

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