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Many will be glad to see the back of 2018, although it was not all doom and gloom for FM. While the Carillion crash dominated the headlines and Brexit shook the industry at home and abroad, positive changes were also emerging. The British Institute of Facilities Management (BIFM) evolved into the Institute of Workplace and Facilities Management (IWFM) to reflect the changing role of FM; the international standard for facilities management, ISO 41001, was introduced to ‘place the industry on the global stage’; and environmental sustainability became a key strategy for building management – both for the savings it provides as well as protecting our planet.

Compare and contrast

It’s not too surprising then that the most popular of Service Works’ FM and PPP blogs last year were those relating to industry trends. In early 2018 we partnered with leading industry journal, FMJ, to survey industry professionals across the UK and identify the challenges and trends affecting facilities management. The full results white paper can be requested here, and we also discussed areas of the FM Software Survey in the blog. “Top 5 FM Technology Trends” and “Is Budget Limiting Tech in FM” were two of our most read articles in 2018, highlighting the industry’s desire to keep pace with change and its keen interest in applying best practice to streamline individual facilities. In fact, this collaboration was something we discussed earlier in 2018, in our second most popular blog of the year, “Carillion’s Demise Prompts Collaborative Healing”.

Integrated asset management

Asset management remains a key area of interest globally. Our blog “How Risky is Your Asset Management Strategy” was widely read and discussed the pitfalls of neglecting a proactive asset management strategy and how ISO 55001, backed by a CAFM system, can improve asset performance. Hand in hand with this, the blogs “Data Integration – Eliminating the Middle Man from FM Services” and “FM Automation Made Simple” were both in the top ten blogs for 2018. In these times of economic uncertainty, small investments that can boost efficiency and reduce long-term costs are essential for stability while having little impact on the bottom line.

FM on the move

Mobile also remained a hot topic last year. Using mobile and tablet devices is now the norm in FM, and teams are looking for new ways to use them to improve service levels and collect more accurate information. “FM on Top Form” provided guidance on using customisable forms through a CAFM mobile app, allowing FMs to improve operative safety, accurate data capture and measuring work performance at the touch of a screen.

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