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Thinking Differently within Facilities Management

As you mark your calendars for the Hospital Engineering Society of Greater NY’s upcoming monthly event on May 9th, I’d like to recap last week's event held on April 11th 2019. MSKCC graciously hosted the event and the turnout and feedback has been great. Fisonic shared some third party researched documented efficiencies that has surpassed what currently exists in the industry and their simple yet innovative product is changing the way we look at steam systems. On behalf of Enhanced Building Solutions, I was given the opportunity to share the topic of Thinking differently within facilities management as we try to keep up with the changing times.

We are in an era where Generation Z those born during the years of 1995-2015 (age 4-24) is entering the workforce. I shared highlights of an article published by Bloomberg that discussed their trends and spending habits. Although finance wasn’t the focus, behavioral patterns were.

Why does this matter? Traditional Trades” of turning wrenches are not being taught in high schools anymore, and the push for technology leaves facilities competing with companies like google and facebook that’s grabbing most of the talent even before they hit college. When kids have a choice of working on video games versus working in a hands on environment it’s sometimes hard to win that competition. Some of the questions asked to spark this awareness were:

  • With a technology driven generation of video watchers how do we get them to read manuals?

  • How do we encourage more people to work within the facilities management industry?

  • With the high turnover how do we get them up to speed faster?

The other article I mentioned discussed the high percentage of human error that happens within critical facilities. Two primary reasons that a technician or operator hits the wrong buttons & neglects to perform routine maintenance activity is:

  1. Lack of or insufficient training and

  2. The need to use instructional information that is not conveniently available or easy to follow.

Owners and managers must understand that although you may have a BMS and maintenance contracts in place, you also have operators that needs to be trained with platforms that other competitive industries are using such as a LMS. If we don’t think differently on how we encourage both millennials and generation Z to come work in our industry, the challenge of hiring competent staff will continue to grow. The old game of telephone doesn’t work. Training utilizing videos provides a functional solution. If done effectively, it:

  • Enhances learning by providing consistent information

  • Gets new employees up-to-speed faster

  • Saves on repetitive training costs

  • Minimizes human error

  • Creates a better learning culture of sharing knowledge

Building equipment technology is advancing faster than operators can keep up with and to prevent them from treating the new equipment the way they've treated the older ones, training is necessary. Buildings account for approximately 40% of CO2 emissions in the United States alone. Nothing will ever replace hands-on learning but a blended learning approach will create an ideal solution. If your company is looking for any advice on how to do this please feel free to reach out by clicking here.

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