VOLUME 31 | 11
FACILITIES MANAGEMENT JOURNAL
How Amey is delivering facilities and asset maintenance to the prison system
FM Clinic: The FM sector offers great careers opportunities to ex-services personnel
Skilling frontline workers
Kam Singh, energy expertise at EMCOR
es LATIO t t s a U d G e e
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Alan Hutchinson, Facilities Director, Howard Kennedy LLP Charles Siddons, Head of Operations, NHS Property Services Darren Miller, NBCUniversal, VP for International Workplace, Facilities & Real Estate Ian Wade, Head of UK Estates, British Medical Association Lucy Hind, Senior FM Lecturer, Leeds Beckett University Marie Johnson, Head of Workplace & Wellbeing, Nominet Paul Cannock, Head of the Estates and Facilities Management Department, European Space Agency Russell Wood, Facilities Manager at Dentsu Aegis Network Russell Burnaby, Head of FM, Regeneration and Environment, Brent Council Simon Francis, Director of Estates and Facilities, The Institute of Cancer Research Simone Fenton-Jarvis, Group Director of Workplace Consultancy and Transformation, Vpod Solutions Stephen Bursi, Facilities Lead, BAE Systems Wayne Young, Facilities Manager at DB Cargo (UK)
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The theme of this year’s Workplace Trends Conference was ‘the office as a desired destination’. However, as we explain in the event report on page 10 the key message of the day wasn’t how the built environment is coping with changed working habits, but rather how it requires a radical change in approach. One of the most thought-provoking sessions dwelt on the importance of managing behavioural change in a workplace transformation project. The case study on Anglo American De Beers real-estate project which reimagined and redesigned its head office, serves as a brilliant example of the problem of working with old behaviours in new environments. Despite the creation of a brilliant new office where staff loved and appreciated the shared spaces and amazing perks; occupant’s feedback on the allocation of shared desking was not so favourable. As the presentation revealed, all the teams were asking for the physical manifestation of their spaces rather than embracing new ways of working within them. The diagnosis of Senior Workplace Consultant Emily Fiddes was that there was nothing wrong with the new space but the complaints were emanating from people who had largely been on their own change journeys. Two years of spending so much time working at home made them used to being able to control their individual environments, and adapting to a different workplace takes time. Fiddes’ argument was that flexible working styles that support new and future ways of working require a huge amount of coordination and consideration by workplace leaders to balance the needs of individuals and teams. For FMs that means a strong strategy needs to be in place. The challenge going forward will be to not just concentrate on the physical office but give as much thought to the virtual and behavioural elements that make up the whole workplace experience. As always, we’d welcome your feedback about any aspect of the magazine, together with your insight into what’s happening in the FM sector.
Find your next role with the FMJ Jobboard Visit jobs.fmj.co.uk for hundreds of roles in FM and associated industries
FACILITIES MANAGEMENT JOURNAL
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THIS MONTH... NEWS & ANALYSIS
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This month’s summary of everything that has hit the headlines in the FM sector.
The latest news and views from membership organisations.
CASE STUDY – HMP ONLEY
Workplace Trends 2023 conference discussed why workplace leaders need a complete change of mind set to prepare for the future.
Sara Bean visited HMP Onley near Rugby to discover the particular challenges for Amey Complex Service’s onsite Facilities Management team in maintaining a men’s prison.
ADVICE AND OPINION
Ricky Majer, Chief Technology Officer at SBFM asks, in an industry reliant on its frontline workforce, are field-based employees getting the recognition they deserve?
Kam Singh, Director of Carbon Solutions at EMCOR UK talks about the benefits of taking a pragmatic approach to energy management.
Ridge and Partners’, ‘The Role of Retrofitting our Non-Domestic Buildings in the Race to Net Zero’ finds FMs are struggling to make their premises environmentally sustainable.
Digital transformation is essential if you want to drive operational efficiencies and prepare your business for the future says Roger Marks, MD at Aeromark.
BLOG & SOCIAL MEDIA
Tim Rook, Chief Markets Officer at Clade Engineering Systems on the importance of avoiding the bystander effect in decarbonisation.
With research revealing that over two thirds of veterans who joined the industry felt FM was a good fit for their skills, and 84 per cent of managers agreeing that veterans have the skills that the industry need, how can sector attract and mobilise veterans?
Ian Pugh Director of PAL Protect, the consultancy division of Anchor Group Services provides an update on the protect duty law and the benefits of SHORE accreditation.
WASTE & RECYCLING
FMs often complain that despite recycling facilities being put in place they are not being used properly. Nathan Gray, Head of Sustainability at Reconomy offers some advice. Venesa Coodien of Fairview Facilities Management explains how suppliers can help clients realise the value of waste. Hannah Osman, Manager of the National Cup Recycling Scheme, what to do to prepare for new legislation for disposable cups.
SOFTWARE Matrix Booking is working to transform the future of work with Direct Line Group with a software solution that goes beyond a simple workplace booking system.
COMPLIANCE Louise Frost of Door Controls Direct discusses the factors that influence accountability for passive fire protection in the built environment.
Tony Smith on the benefits of entrance control solutions for multi-tenant offices. Daniel May from Consort on access to healthcare sites. Biometric-secured mobile credentials explained by Terry Sallas, of Chubb Fire & Security.
Find out who’s moving where in the facilities management profession.
Employee benefits are a key differentiator in the current labour market, says Emma Thornton of facilities management recruitment experts 300 North.
Piers Zangana explores the development of new, virtual ways of learning and training which are being applied in the hospitality and facilities management space.
A brief roundup of the latest careers news in the facilities management sector.
New product and service launches and company news from the FM industry.
Next Edition The British Council for Offices’ National Awards set new standards for the next generation of offices. We profile some of the award-winning workplaces and why they help illustrate the meaningful role that offices play in society. Our focus on business continuity learns how FMs can improve their chances of recovery and limit lasting impact on their business. We find out how washrooms can balance sustainability with functionality, efficiency and aesthetics; explain how facilities managers can ensure safe and wellmaintained premises during the winter months and present an overview of the upcoming health and safety regulatory changes to look out for in 2024. And we ask the FM Clinic panel, ‘what more can be done next year to help address the recruitment shortfall within the FM sector’?
email@example.com To register for your free copy of FMJ visit fmj.co.uk NOVEMBER 2023
NEWS & ANALYSIS
LEGAL VIEW REMOTE WORKING EMPLOYMENT TRIBUNALS HIT RECORD HIGH Jim Moore, Employee Relations Expert at HR consultants Hamilton Nash An increasing number of employers are trying to encourage workers back to the oﬃce. However, they are meeting resistance from employees who have embraced the ‘new normal’ of remote and hybrid working since the pandemic. We conducted some research into the number of employment tribunal cases that include remote working as a factor, and we found that they are reaching record highs. Some 42 tribunals mentioned ‘remote working’ in 2022, a 50 per cent increase from the 27 cases the year before. In the ﬁrst half of 2023 there have been 25 cases already – equivalent to 50 cases for the whole year. Flexible working requests Employees with at least 26 weeks’ service have the right to request a ﬂexible working arrangement, which can include remote or hybrid working. Employers can refuse, but need to justify any refusal. Prior to the pandemic, it was easy to argue that it was an on-site working environment, and not practical to have someone working remotely. However, it’s harder to make that argument if workers have just spent two years’ working from home during the pandemic. Flexible working requests can also be submitted as a ‘reasonable adjustment’ for a disability, or to balance child care commitments with work. In one case, Alice Thompson was awarded over £184,000 after her employer denied her request to ﬁnish work early to collect her child from nursery. In another, Lisanne Hedger was awarded £36,000 by an employment tribunal in October 2022 when her employer, British Deaf Association, refused her request to reduce her hours after having a baby. Future hybrid working trends There are strong pressures on employers to embrace remote or hybrid working, especially with a labour shortage aﬀecting the number of skilled candidates. An increasing number of job applicants are expecting hybrid working to be an option, and will favour employers that oﬀer it. Also, when hiring for an on-site role, the potential candidate pool will be limited to a reasonable commuting distance, such as a 20-mile radius from the premises. An employer open to remote working could access talent anywhere in the country. There could also be potential salary cost savings. A London-based employer would normally be faced with high salary expectations due to the cost of living in the City, with many employers oﬀering a ‘London weighting’ on pay. However, a worker in Northumberland may be content with a salary that’s lower than the London average but still above average in their location. Rural communities also beneﬁt, as younger generations no longer have to move away to ﬁnd work. This keeps rural communities alive, with workers spending in the local economy and houses used as main homes rather than holiday lets. As politicians catch on to these positive messages, support for remote working within government will only increase. There are also economic incentives at play. Fewer people in the oﬃce is allowing some employers to consolidate their real estate portfolio and reduce both their costs and their carbon footprint. Is the oﬃce doomed? All of this may be grim reading for facilities managers and managed service providers. However, despite the growth in remote and hybrid working, the physical workplace is in no danger of going extinct any time soon. While some employers have embraced remote and hybrid working, others are doubling-down on getting workers back into the oﬃce. A survey by recruitment company Hays Plc of nearly 15,000 white-collar staﬀ and employers found that 43 per cent were working entirely from the oﬃce last month, up from 36 per cent a year earlier, with fewer than one in ﬁve now working entirely remotely. The challenge for FMs is creating shared working spaces that cater to hybrid patterns and entice workers back to the oﬃce, while still oﬀering a potential cost saving over dedicated workspaces.
LISTEN TO YOUR FRONTLINE WORKERS TO IMPROVE PERFORMANCE AND SAFETY UK businesses are being urged to listen more to their workers as they spot issues quickly and have ideas about how to solve them but aren’t being consulted by management. Two-thirds (65 per cent) of frontline workers in the UK say they spot operational issues monthly or more frequently, yet less than half (45 per cent) see actions taken to address them within this timeframe. According to a new report, ‘Feedback from the Field’ from global technology company SafetyCulture, many believe the answers to operational issues come directly from those working at the coal face. More than half (55 per cent) of frontline workers say that the best ideas for improvement are found within their ranks rather than from leadership (19 per cent). Almost a third of workers (31 per cent) stated that their bosses do not encourage improvements. The report, informed by a YouGov UK-wide survey of frontline workers, shows that around nine in 10 (87 per cent) believe that the business they are working in is failing to operate at its full potential or they are unsure about its performance. In addition to ineffective management which is cited by 42 per cent of frontline workers as a key reason for their business failing to maximise their full potential, respondents also flagged inadequate communication (39 per cent) and training for staff (31 per cent) as barriers. Three in 10 say the last time they had valuable training from their organisation that helped improve their work was a year or more ago. Concerningly, 13 per cent of UK frontline workers feel they have never had any valuable training from their organisation. The consequences of a lack of training are laid bare in the report. More than half (54 per cent) of those surveyed believe that at least a few of their workplace’s injuries could have been prevented had those involved received better training and work instructions.
COMMERCIAL REAL ESTATE OCCUPIERS ARE WILLING TO PUT THEIR MONEY WHERE THE TECH IS
New research data from JLL’s 2023 Global Real Estate Technology Survey reveals over 80 per cent of companies are increasing technology budgets despite a challenging operating environment. Ninety-one per cent of occupier respondents said they are willing to pay a premium for tech-enabled space as they look to technology for strategic value and increased revenue. In fact, real estate tech budgets are set to grow faster than investments in headcount, footprint and operating budgets. JLL’s research finds that sustainability tools will account for the largest share of increases in technology budgets, underscoring the business and regulatory pressures driving the race to net zero. Respondents expect clean energy solutions to have the greatest impact on real estate over the next three years. Following sustainability tech, respondents pointed to artificial intelligence (AI) and generative AI as the technologies expected to have the greatest impact on real estate over the next three years. Additionally, JLL’s research found occupier tech priorities are expanding beyond cost reduction and facilitating remote work to include technologies that drive value to their overarching business goals through collaboration, optimising and enhanced decision-making. Link to survey https://www.jll.com.au/content/dam/jll-com/documents/pdf/ research/global/jll-technology-as-a-value-driver-for-real-estate.pdf
Positive signs of stabilisation for the workplace sector into 2024 and beyond Oﬃce ﬁt-out and refurbishment specialist, BW: Workplace Experts, has published its latest, workplace market insights (Q3 and Q4) showing an evolving but positive picture over the last six months of the year and into 2024. Ongoing challenges around rising costs and uncertainty, in addition, to the purpose and identity of workplaces continue. This says BW has delayed some commercial development decisions although this is also being oﬀset by a growing ﬂight towards quality, experience, and sustainability from occupiers. The report highlights key trends in the workplace sector, setting out ﬁndings and forecasts for the commercial market: • M&E capacity is strained, however skilled labour shortages are slowly improving despite an aging workforce and longer-term challenges faced by the industry. • Whilst material prices remain over 40 per cent higher on average than in early 2020, there are emerging positive signs that materials are becoming more readily available and price increases are settling. • Insolvency rates are now at 35 per cent above prepandemic ﬁgures with many specialist sub-contractors demanding staged payments; challenging the traditional cash ﬂow of projects. • Upward pressure on wages and labour has resulted in an overall tender price augmentation of four to ﬁve per cent. However, inﬂation has come down quicker than expected and interest rates have (hopefully) peaked. • EPC C rated buildings will be the minimum requirement in 2027 – just four years from now, impacting 73 per cent of oﬃces (with a D or lower).
NEWS & ANALYSIS
INNOVATIVE WORKSPACES: DATES FOR THE FM DIARY THE MOST POPULAR OFFICE SPACE BENEFITS 15-16 NOVEMBER 2023 London Build Expo Olympia London www.londonbuildexpo.com
21-22 NOVEMBER 2023 WORKTECH London Convene, 22 Bishopsgate, London https://worktechevents.com
21-22 NOVEMBER 2023 LiftEx 2023 Exhibition Centre, Liverpool https://liftex.org/liftex-liverpool-2023
ffices with onsite facilities such as gyms, nap rooms, gardens, cafes can help employees enhance their overall wellbeing, productivity, and work-life balance. These amenities can promote physical fitness, mental relaxation, and social interaction, fostering a healthier and more enjoyable work environment. Studio Alliance, a European alliance of workplace experts have investigated the advantages of the most popular office space benefits. By looking at monthly search data Studio Alliance was able to uncover the most popular amenity trends for offices. The top five are: Amenity Garden Nap Pods Games Room Gym Coffee Bar
Amenity + Office Average Monthly Searches 60,500 210 140 140 40
Benefits of the five most popular onsite office amenities
Garden: Gardens in an office space provide employees a respite from the daily hustle and bustle which can lead to reduced stress levels and improved mental wellbeing. While contributing to a more appealing and vibrant workspace. Nap Pods: Nap pods in an office space offer employees a valuable opportunity to recharge and boost productivity during the workday, resulting in improved focus and cognitive performance. They also demonstrate a commitment to employee wellbeing and work-life balance. Games Room: Games rooms in office spaces offer an outlet for employees to relax and unwind, fostering a more positive work culture and reducing stress. Offices can encourage team bonding and creativity leading to improved morale. Gym: A gym in the office promotes employee health and wellbeing, which can boost overall productivity. Gyms also show commitment to employee health, creating a positive work environment. Coffee Bar: Coffee bars within an office provide a convenient and social hub for employees, fostering spontaneous interactions and idea-sharing which can lead to increased collaboration and innovation.
22-23 NOVEMBER 2023 EMEX: The Net Zero & Energy Management Expo ExCeL, London www.emexlondon.com
05-06 DECEMBER 2023 CIBSE Build2Perform Live ExCeL, London www.build2perform.co.uk
22-23 JANUARY 2024
FM Forum Radisson Blu Hotel, London Stansted https://facilitiesmanagementforum.co.uk
20 FEBRUARY 2024
Workplace Futures 1 Great George Street, London www.workplace-futures.co.uk
27-28 FEBRUARY 2024
London PropTech Show ExCeL London https://proptechshow.com
13-14 MARCH 2023
The Manchester Cleaning Show 2024 Manchester Central https://cleaningshow.co.uk/manchester
08-09 MAY 2023 FOOTPRINT+ Old Billingsgate, London www.footprintplus.com
NEWS & ANALYSIS
RICS FM SURVEY PREDICTS DEMAND FOR SUSTAINABILITY AND MAINTENANCE MANAGEMENT NEXT YEAR
ver the coming year, sustainability management is anticipated to see the strongest growth relative to all other areas of FM. This is according to the results of the Q3 2023 RICS Facilities Management Survey which revealed that maintenance management has moved up to second spot in the expected growth rankings, overtaking strategic planning and project management for the first time since the survey was formed back in 2020. Displaying a more pessimistic view however, both catering and cleaning remain near the bottom of the expected growth rankings. Over the last quarter, education and healthcare (as well as the broader public sector), displayed firmly positive demand trends for FM services.
Likewise, demand for serviced business space also picked up, even if the net balance of respondents reporting an increase eased to +38 per cent from a much higher reading of +62 per cent last quarter. At the other end of the scale, manufacturing was the only sector in which demand for FM services did not increase, with the latest net balance reading of zero pointing to a flat picture. Turning to employment trends across the industry, a net balance of +46 per cent of survey participants noted an increase in headcounts during Q3 with the pace of hiring (in net balance terms) remaining very consistent over recent quarters. Looking ahead, a net balance of +38 per cent of contributors anticipate employment levels rising over the next 12 months.
IOSH NOMINATES NEXT PRESIDENT-ELECT FOR NEXT YEAR
An experienced IOSH professional who has worked across several industries has been nominated as IOSH’s next President-Elect. Kelly Nicoll CFIOSH will take on the role for 2023-24, subject to ratification at IOSH’s AGM on 15 November. Nicoll aims to continue to champion members, with a focus on supporting and celebrating IOSH’s volunteers, while also highlighting the importance of psychosocial safety and coaching. Nicoll said: “It is an honour and a real career highlight to be nominated as President-Elect. I will wholeheartedly support Stuart Hughes in his Presidential year and also work closely with him and the wider Presidential team to build on the work to strengthen IOSH’s Council, to improve its efficacy and impact.” Nicoll is currently Head of Environment, Health and Safety at Doncaster Culture and Leisure Trust. In 15 years as an OSH professional, Nicoll has also worked in industries including rail, facilities management, the NHS, construction, events and broadcasting. She has held several volunteering roles for IOSH, including as a member of the Thames Valley Branch committee, as a mentor and as a member of Council. Away from IOSH, she represents health and safety for a special educational trust in Doncaster and is a board member for the Recovery Coach Academy. Nicoll said: “As the next President Elect, I look forward to continuing to give back to our membership and our profession and championing my belief: everyone gets home.” 8
Despite the positive outlook for employment, respondents continue to cite difficulties in finding staff across several areas. Building and maintenance appears most problematic in terms of sourcing suitable skilled workers, with 86 per cent of contributors highlighting troubles filling such roles (up from 70 per cent in the previous quarter and the highest share since the survey was formed in 2020). Similarly, around two-thirds of respondents report encountering difficulties in sourcing workers for roles in support services. At the same time, 52 per cent point to a shortfall in candidates for property management positions.
IWFM CELEBRATES 2023 IMPACT AWARDS WINNERS
he 2023s IWFM Impact Awards took place on Monday 16 October at JW Marriott Grosvenor House London with finalists in 20 categories, spanning topics such as social value, positive climate action and wellbeing. The event also marked the Institute’s 30th anniversary, and Mark Whittaker, Chair of IWFM, remarked the organisation has been “advancing our profession and optimising its impact, by empowering and enabling workplace and facilities managers through professional recognition”. Reflecting on the Awards, IWFM CEO Linda Hausmanis stated: “On the 30th
anniversary of IWFM, I’d like to express my admiration for all entrants and the valuable work they’ve demonstrated. The Awards categories touch on some of the most pressing issues of our time, so to witness such a wide variety of beneficial outcomes attests to the importance of workplace and facilities management. It’s vital to recognise the central role of professionals in helping businesses achieve success and effectively deliver.” Awards winners can be viewed here: https://www.fmj. co.uk/?p=149362
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1 Be punctual. Always be on time, but if delay is unavoidable, try to let the customer know. 2 Be thorough. Don’t cut corners. Don’t take short cuts. 3 Be meticulous. Leave no stone unturned. Work steadily. Work calmly. 4 Be efficient. Use your experience to get the job done quickly and correctly. 5 Be careful. Be painstaking. Be vigilant. Be watchful. 6 Be knowledgeable. Know your trade inside out – and never stop learning. 7 Be safe. It would be ironic if work to safeguard people put yourself and others at risk. So don’t take any. 8 Be polite. Be respectful to everyone you come into contact with, colleagues and customers alike. Colt engineers. The UK’s most trusted. With an extremely comprehensive, ongoing training programme, Colt engineers are widely considered to be the best in the country. In fact, many engineers who join us from other companies are surprised at the level of quality we expect. The strict set of guidelines all our engineers work to means you can rest assured that your system is fully safe and operational.
4062.22 Colt Service - FMJ.indd 10
Competency is crucial. When it comes to smoke control maintenance, you must ensure your service provider is highly competent and certified by a third party. Colt is the UK’s first company to be certified to both IFC SDI 19 and SDI 05 schemes, awarded in recognition of our skill as an installer and service provider of smoke control systems and fire curtains. Each one of our expertly trained engineers has one aim in mind – to keep your buildings safe and legal, whether your system was designed and installed by Colt or not. Smoke is different to fire. That’s why you need specialist maintenance. Fire grabs more headlines, but in the event of a fire, stopping the spread of smoke can often prove more effective in preventing damage and injury. As crucial life safety systems, smoke ventilation products need to be carefully designed, installed, commissioned and maintained by fully competent experts. Colt is just such a company. To find out more, visit us at: coltinfo.co.uk/service-maintenance calls us on 02392 491735 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Expertise built on experience.
NEWS & ANALYSIS
CHANGE OF MIND Change was the overriding theme of the Workplace Trends 2023 conference, but rather than the tired old troupe on the changes to the office since the pandemic, we heard why workplace leaders need a complete change of mind set to prepare for the future
n his opening session, Chris Kane, who’s been at the forefront of Corporate Real Estate for over 30 years said that “none of us had a clear picture of where the workplace is and where it is heading. Are we even asking the right questions?” He believes all the discussions regarding the “return to the office” is a giant red herring when we’re in the middle of a transition to the digital world. We’re in the third decade of the 21st century he explained, but trying to apply 20th century thinking and 20th century models. The big challenge is whether we have the courage to experiment, to try new things and look beyond our silos. “Change is going to happen whether we like it or not” said Jennifer Bryan author of 'Leading People in Change: A Practical Guide,'. The last few years has only accelerated that process; where once we had an idea of what was coming down the road, now we only can see a little bit down the line, and we can’t predict what is around the corner. When it comes to making a change, instead of approaching projects using hindsight we
need to use foresight,” she advised.
WHY THE WORKPLACE? Environmental Psychologist and Workplace Strategist Nigel Oseland presented the results of his research with Professor Gary Raw in partnership with MillerKnoll and Workplace Trends to gauge the appeal of working in the office compared to working from home. The main reason he revealed, why 55 per cent of respondents prefer home working compared to 37 per cent in the office is the ability to concentrate better. This suggests he said that to attract people back to the office we need to offer as high quality a space for focused work as that of the spaces for collaboration. More disquieting for FMs were respondents’ levels of dissatisfaction with office ‘hygiene factors’ such as temperature, noise and lighting, and the fact that people with allocated desks are more likely to want to return to the office than those with unassigned desks. This challenges the entire concept of flexible workplaces. Intriguingly, while
the research showed no particular preferences by the different generations, the study suggests; employers are going to have to figure out how to make the office as appealing to introverts as it is to extroverts. If personality preferences are one of the primary reasons why home working remains so popular, an all too often overlooked set of individuals are the neurodiverse, who, explained Josh Artus, of neuroscience specialists Centric Lab account for approximately 15 per cent of the UK population. This is why the Centric Lab’s 2022 research paper for the British Council for Offices entitled ‘Designing for Neurodiversity’, was such a step forward. However, Artus cautioned, while design is important, the culture of an organisation plays an essential role in supporting these workers. Tree Hall of Charity IT Leaders, who was diagnosed with autism at 47 echoed this sentiment. She described how dealing with the social norms of the neuro typical focused workplace can cause tremendous levels of stress for the neurodiverse and her personal
insights on negotiating the workplace as an autistic person challenges our perception that organisations are doing enough to support all forms of diversity.
FOSTERING COMMUNITIES Sharing their experiences of reshaping the relationship civil servants have with their place of work, Sara Edwards, Ruth Smethurst and Leah Jones of the Government Property Agency described how they’ve created open, sharing collaborative buildings and spaces to help occupants feel comfortable and confident. Espousing the development of workplace communities within work spaces, Jones said: “We’re trying to get people into the office and to encourage people back they need to feel like a second home - so to help achieve that communities really are vital.” What happens though when you unveil a sparkling new workplace but occupants complain there aren’t enough desks? This was the dilemma Diego Henrique, Head of Real Estate at Anglo American De Beers and Emily Fiddes Senior Workplace Consultant at MCM candidly shared in their session. As they concluded: “We realised from our workshops that everyone has been on their own change journey, and people who’d spent time working at home were used to their own space and controlling their own environment.” Making wider environmental changes is perhaps the overriding concern within the built environment said Ann Beavis of Crown Workplace who explored the challenges of ensuring that any workplace change supports organisations in their carbon reduction journey. She remarked: “I’ve seen a lot of organisations with lots of fancy pages on their website showing their sustainable credentials. However, the actual work environment is the physical embodiment of an organisation’s brand and values, yet how many reflect those values in their workplace? “This is why, when we’re visualising our idea of the workplace of the future this agenda should remain front and centre of our thinking.” As Kane suggested at the beginning of the day, we need to stop looking at the workplace in isolation but go beyond the office building to ask, where, why and who it’s there to benefit? https://workplacetrends.co
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ADVICE & OPINION
AVOIDING A RETROFIT CRISIS Matt Richards, a built environment expert and partner at Ridge and Partners, draws on new research to discuss the obstacles facilities managers face when trying to make their organisation’s building Net Zero
crucial piece of the puzzle in the Government’s ambitious goal of Net Zero by 2050 lies in retrofitting the UK's non-domestic building stock. However, our research report, ‘The Role of Retrofitting our Non-Domestic Buildings in the Race to Net Zero’, reveals that many organisations are falling short in making their premises environmentally sustainable. The fault for this doesn’t lie with facilities managers and property heads, who despite having a huge workload and many competing pressures to deal with, want to do more to play their part in their organisation’s move to Net Zero. Instead, the problem is the obstacles in their path.
THE OBSTACLES FACILITIES MANAGERS FACE The 101 facilities and property heads we questioned in our study are facing several challenges to get retrofit projects for their organisations off the ground. These include: » Lack of Board Acknowledgment: A significant roadblock we identified is the lack of recognition from boards regarding the importance of retrofitting in their Net Zero strategy. Despite the majority (76 per cent) of organisations working towards Net Zero, over half (55 per cent) of the facilities and property managers we interviewed for the report said that their boards do not acknowledge the need for retrofitting at all. » Building Heads' Involvement: This perhaps explains why many organisations are not involving building heads in Net Zero planning. Nearly 23 per cent of those we spoke to have had no involvement at all, and most have not seen their company's five-year sustainability plans.
» Underestimation of Carbon Pollution: We found that organisations are often underestimating the carbon pollution produced by their buildings which is leading to a lack of urgency to reduce it. There’s also confusion; the vast majority (86 per cent) of organisations do not understand how retrofitting can enhance a building’s energy efficiency. » Misconceptions about Building Stock: Many decision-makers harbour misconceptions about the life span of the UK’s existing non-domestic building stock, assuming that the majority will be replaced by 2050. In reality, approximately 70 per cent of today’s buildings will still be in use. This misunderstanding dampens the enthusiasm for retrofitting because it isn’t deemed necessary.
OVERCOMING THE OBSTACLES To help facilities managers address these obstacles we’ve identified five things which we believe need to happen: » Education: Retrofitting needs to be put on agendas and seen as a viable and often preferable alternative to building new. For instance, 24 per cent underestimate the impact of retrofitting, and 45 per cent mistakenly believe carbon-neutral grid energy will negate the need for energy efficiency measures. Also, many organisations ignore the carbon which has been used to create a new building – this must be factored in when weighing up the options. » Involvement: Boards must recognise and harness the expertise of facilities and property heads. Facilities leaders are already involved in other strategic decisions such as the role of buildings on their employer brand or in improving staff wellbeing,
performance, and retention. The sustainability agenda is surely another area where property heads can play a major part. Their expertise needs to be respected and deployed. » Budgeting: Retrofit programmes require substantial investment. They cannot be accommodated within day-to-day budgets. Yet over half (54 per cent) of boards base their building budgets on the previous year, which doesn't consider inflation or energy price fluctuations, let alone a large retrofit project. A new, more strategic approach to building budgets is needed. » Expert Support: Even with their expertise, facilities heads need external support to navigate the complexities of achieving Net Zero and evaluating the benefits of retrofitting vs a new build. Expert guidance is crucial for making informed decisions, prioritising projects, choosing technologies, and building strong business cases. » Incentives: The Government needs to help too. Incentives for energy-efficient buildings are currently lacking. Addressing issues such as VAT treatment for retrofit programs can level the playing field with new builds and encourage more retrofit initiatives.
PRACTICALITIES OF RETROFITTING Overcoming these obstacles is crucial, but we recognise that implementing retrofit strategies can also pose challenges. For instance, almost a third (31 per cent) of facilities heads surveyed feel delivering retrofit projects without causing disruption is a tough challenge. However, the long-term benefits of retrofit projects, including achieving Net Zero goals, enhancing building eff iciency, ensuring employee health and wellbeing, improving productivity, and attracting and retaining staff, outweigh short-term disruptions. Proper planning with multidisciplinary consultant teams can minimise disruption, allowing organisations to continue operations during retrofit projects. While many organisations are making strides in reducing their carbon footprint, the role of buildings in this endeavour remains underestimated. To make substantial progress, a collaborative approach is needed to address the five key areas hindering retrofitting efforts. Once these are tackled, with the right practical support and expertise, facilities management professionals can truly play a pivotal role in delivering the UK's Net Zero ambitions. The full report can be accessed at: https://ridge.co.uk/insights/the-uks-retrofit-crisis/
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Survey and Plan Our engineers will survey the site, locating and verifying your dampers, to get a clear picture of the scale of the operation and an idea of the existing maintenance schedule. Service and Report We will check each damper individually, ascertaining the current operational status of your systems and all the HVAC controls on-site. Repair and Replace We will consider which dampers to repair and which to replace, creating a cost-effective strategy for moving forward, without obstructing your day-today operations. Assist with Asset Register On completion of the damper review process, we will assist in the completion of all asset registers, including the location, speciﬁcation and maintenance history for all dampers covered by the service contract.
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ADVICE & OPINION
WHO’S RESPONSIBLE WHEN PASSIVE
FIRE PROTECTION FAILS? Louise Frost, a senior marketer at Door Controls Direct, discusses the factors that influence accountability for passive fire protection in the built environment
hen it comes to safeguarding lives and property, passive fire protection plays a pivotal role. Passive fire protection encompasses a wide range of architectural and structural elements designed to limit the spread of fire and smoke. These include fire-resistant materials applied to structural beams, fire doorsets, cavity barriers, fire-stopping compounds, and more. The primary objectives of passive fire protection are twofold: to protect occupants by providing them with a safe means of escape during a fire and to minimise property damage. When passive fire protection is effective, it can buy valuable time for both occupants and the fire rescue services (FRS). It provides a facility’s users with time to safely evacuate and for the FRS to contain the blaze before it spirals out of control.
THE STAKES IN PLAY The key stakeholders in the battle for accountability are: Building Owners: Often the first to be held accountable when passive fire protection fails. They are responsible for ensuring that their properties meet safety regulations and standards. Failure to do so can lead to fines and even imprisonment. Architects and Designers: Those who plan and design buildings play a critical role in determining the effectiveness of passive fire protection. If a building’s design inadequately addresses fire safety requirements, architects and designers may be held liable for any resulting failures. Contractors and Builders: Those responsible for the physical construction of a building must ensure that the materials and techniques used for passive fire protection adhere to standards and regulations. Regulatory Authorities: Government agencies responsible for setting and enforcing building codes and fire safety regulations also play a role in accountability. If regulations are unclear or insufficient, or if they are not rigorously enforced, the effectiveness of PFP measures will continue to be compromised. Manufacturers of Fire Protection Products: Companies that produce passive fire protection products must ensure that their products meet 14
stringent safety standards. If their products are found to be defective or substandard, they may be held liable for any failures. Occupants and Users: In some cases, occupants and users of a building may also be accountable if their actions or negligence contribute to a fire or hinder evacuation efforts. Employers: The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 section 3 includes employers under the banner of ‘responsible person’ “if the workplace is to any extent under his control”.
THE COMPLEX FACTORS Several complex factors contribute to the challenges of assigning responsibility when passive fire protection fails: Regulatory Ambiguity Building codes and regulations can vary significantly by region and are subject to frequent updates and revisions. This can lead to ambiguity in compliance requirements and challenges in determining whether a building adheres to the applicable regulations. Human Error Errors can occur at various stages of the construction process, from design to construction. With people involved at every stage, no matter how automated some processes are, it’s inevitable. Identifying which party is responsible for a specific error can be challenging, as it often involves multiple stakeholders. Aging Infrastructure As buildings age, passive fire protection systems can deteriorate and become ineffective. Determining whether the responsibility lies with the original builders, subsequent maintenance contractors, or the current owner can be complex. Cost-Driven Decision-Making Cost considerations lead to compromises in passive fire protection measures. Deciphering whether cost-cutting decisions were made knowingly or unknowingly is a point of contention. A lack of regular inspections and maintenance also contributes to PFP failures.
LEGAL BATTLES AND PRECEDENTS The battle for accountability often plays out in
In association with
the legal arena, with lawsuits and court decisions shaping the landscape of responsibility. Legal cases involving passive fire protection failures set important precedents, influencing how responsibility is assigned in future cases.
PREVENTING FAILURES AND PROMOTING ACCOUNTABILITY While assigning accountability after an incident is important, preventing passive fire protection failures in the first place is the primary goal. Here are some steps to consider in order to promote accountability and enhance fire safety: Stringent Regulations: Governments and regulatory bodies must ensure that building codes and fire safety regulations are clear, regularly updated, and rigorously enforced. This includes regular inspections and compliance checks. Education and Training: Architects, designers, contractors, and manufacturers should receive comprehensive training on fire safety and passive fire protection. This education should emphasise the critical role they all play in ensuring building safety. Maintenance and Inspections: Building owners should prioritise regular maintenance and inspections of all fire protection systems, active and passive, to ensure they remain in good working condition. Ethical Decision-Making: Stakeholders should prioritise safety over cost-cutting measures. Ethical decisions need to be made that prioritise the wellbeing of occupants and property, sourcing products that meet all of the required standards, from a dependable supplier, and having them installed by qualified trades. Industry Collaboration: Architects, contractors, manufacturers, and regulatory authorities should collaborate to create industry best practices that promote effective passive fire protection. By implementing stringent regulations, promoting education and training, and prioritising ethical decision-making, we can enhance passive fire protection and, ultimately, save lives and protect property. The battle for accountability should serve as a reminder.
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ADVICE & OPINION
TAKING THE PLUNGE FMJ AIMS TO SUPPORT TECHNICAL EXPERTISE IN THE FM MARKET
Roger Marks, Managing Director at Aeromark talks to Charlotte Bywell, UK Managing Director of the Airedale Group about taking the risk out of digital transformation
igital transformation is essential if you want to drive operational efficiencies and prepare your business for the future, but it takes considerable commitment to take the decision to change your systems and overhaul your processes. The Airedale Group and their technical services division, Airedale Technical Care, is one of the largest commercial catering installation, service and maintenance companies in the UK and following recent acquisitions has over 300 specialist engineers out in the field nationwide. “Strategic development never stops, it’s a continuous process,” says Charlotte Bywell, UK Managing Director of the Airedale Group. “But the wider issue is making time to act upon it and finding the courage to make major changes to the status quo. The thought of changing deeply embedded processes often turns many people off and means that not changing can appear a safer option. But we felt the current economic situation actually provided a great horizon for change and a chance to redefine our organisation and create a stronger business foundation for the mid to long term.” It has become more important than 16
ever to ensure maintenance plans beat service level agreements. Asset downtime or inefficient running is even more costly at a time when margins are falling but prices are rising. Bywell adds: “Our engineers are trained to carry out multiple equipment repairs on a range of catering assets to ensure we meet and exceed our client’s expectations. Therefore, the efficient internal management of people and resources is vital.”
Bywell continues: “For our digital transformation, we undertook an evaluation of the various incumbent Computer-aided Facilities Management and Service Management applications within our group of companies and a comprehensive review of alternative systems in the marketplace. We selected Aeromark as our partner because of their strong sector experience, the functionality and their commercial model which offers a true partnership approach.” She says there was lots to consider: “We needed operational integrity for each group entity; for compliance and resource optimisation; and we wanted to be able to share services across divisions. We also needed the ability to control cross-charging and commercial reporting across our technical care division in the one platform which would allow cross-company fluidity. We also had to ensure minimal risk to the group during the transition.”
OVERCOMING RESISTORS Organisations tend to accumulate software, processes and, especially, people that become embedded, making change difficult. It often seems easier and prudent to make tactical alterations rather than the bigger decision to go the whole way and transform. From an IT perspective it can be convenient to look at systems like Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) but no system can do everything and do it well. An ERP system will be stronger at core finance functions just as a Customer Relationship Management system will be proficient at sales and marketing. Service and maintenance have their own demands and expertise, and therefore demand their own platform.
MITIGATING THE RISK OF CHANGE “It is a significant risk. We all hear stories of things going wrong. So, if you’re going to take the plunge into large-scale digital change, you need to have the confidence that you’ve chosen the best platform and people to guide you through it and you have to be mindful of the commitment required from your own people. In any project like this, they have to carry on with their ‘day job’ during transition. “Once you have committed to
change, work with your partner to redefine your operations, and be mindful that, as the sponsor for change, you should work with the resistors through open communication and inclusivity. Very soon the resistors become the drivers and the job is half done,” she adds. One other factor Bywell identified was the commitment of the partnership: “Unlike most software companies there are minimal upfront costs for licences and professional services which reduces our exposure and increases the drive to go-live, this gave us both assurance and confidence.”
WHERE NEXT IN THE STRATEGIC THINKING? All business areas require strategic thinking and, always with a view towards environmental issues such as energy management and emission control. Within Airedale Technical Services environmental social governance has become more tangible because more effective resource management will now maximise jobs per day, resulting in less travel time and in turn reducing CO2 emissions. Within Human Resources, there’s increasing pressures on retention, recruitment and the skills shortage, digital transformation optimises current resources reducing the burden of recruitment and, through integration with a video streaming and capture systems, cross training is available. Engineers benefit, retention improves, and skills are shared for the benefit of all. In a fiercely competitive market made more difficult through increasing costs and the recession, taking the plunge through digital transformation has become fundamental to reducing costs and the environmental impacts of its operations, not only for Airedale but also for its customers. As Bywell concludes: “If not now - then when?”
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ADVICE & OPINION
SOCIAL - BLOG TIM ROOK, CHIEF MARKETS OFFICER AT CLADE ENGINEERING SYSTEMS
@markcatchlove See what’s coming up in the MillerKnoll Insight Series https:// mkinsightgroup.com/invitation Rob Harris https://www.linkedin.com/in/ rob-harris-276045a/ As the supply industry gears up to create ‘workplace experience’ as a means of competing with working from home, we need to recognise that no amount of experience will overcome antipathy toward traditional management structures and corporate culture. New designs will address the symptoms rather than causes of dissatisfaction. Too much workplace design takes place in the real estate echo chamber. But if we can align the best thinking in ‘workplace’ (and there is plenty of it out there) with positive and progressive management thinking, then real strides might be made in increasing worker satisfaction. https://www.ramidus.co.uk IFMA @IFMA Dive into the European FM Provider Report and discover insights that empower you to choose the optimal service provider for your unique needs. Explore the report here: https://knowledgelibrary.ifma. org/european-fm-provider-report/ RICS @RICSnews In the last 3 months, the interim RICS Standards and Regulation Board (SRB), led by Chair Nigel Clarke, has collaborated to address challenges and maintain public confidence.Explore Nigel’s detailed 3-month update here: http://ms.spr.ly/601292CNk The British Institute of Cleaning Science (BICSc) https://www.linkedin.com/company/ british-institute-of-cleaning-science/ We have released another FREE course on our Virtual Training Suite! Robotics – I am your automatic cleaner. This is a short course which examines the different types of cleaning robotics, the considerations you should take before buying a robotic cleaning machine and a look at the current robotic market to see how they are being implemented around the world. Enrol today: https://ow.ly/Vx1r50Q2vgp CBRE UK @CBRE_UK The UK economy is likely to show signs of improvement during 2024, but how will it fair for the rest of 2023? Gain valuable insights with our Q4 forecasts and learn what this means for commercial real estate. Read our latest UK Economic Outlook Q4 2023: https://cbre.co/4980USK
AVOIDING THE BYSTANDER
EFFECT IN DECARBONISATION
ost organisations have an active desire to tackle climate change and make positive changes within their business practice towards long-term sustainability. Climate initiatives, business grants, and information about renewable energy sources such as commercial heat pumps or solar panel installations are available to all businesses, but many can’t afford them or aren’t aware of their access to them. Worse still, however, is the potential for organisations to fall prey to what’s known as the bystander effect. In social psychology, the bystander effect is the idea that where there is an emergency situation, the greater the number of people present, the less likely it is that someone will step up and offer to help. Each will be under the impression that somebody else will take action, thus leading to a combined stance of total inaction. When we take this idea and place it within the context of the current global climate emergency and the inaction of businesses to decarbonise, it does track. It is understandable as individuals that one might be daunted or overwhelmed by the concept of climate change, and perhaps even question the impact one person can really have just by making sure your recycling goes in the correct box outside your home. From a business perspective, making a genuine change to any aspect of your operations may present challenges, especially when you consider the short-term potential pain in cost and challenges in traversing the adoption of new methods by staff and customers. Change in any form costs time, resources and cold, hard cash. There are undoubtedly challenges to the process in the road ahead, but decarbonisation of the commercial sector is certainly achievable, and reaching Net Zero is crucial to our long-term future planet. One way in which FMs can make a positive step forward and create a more sustainable business practice that doesn’t just pay lip service to decarbonisation is to install commercial heat pumps. Commercial air source heat pumps could be one of the best solutions for commercial properties in the UK in making a difference in the overall Government target of Net Zero 2050. Heat pumps have the technology to become the low carbon heat provider for both commercial and residential properties in the UK. Significantly reducing carbon footprints and energy bills in the same breath, their positive impact and contribution towards decarbonisation targets can’t be understated. The impact of climate change on us all is here to see around the world. There has been a political focus on reducing carbon emissions for quite some time, and
Tim Rook, Chief Markets Officer at Clade Engineering Systems
businesses are an integral part of the UKs plans to meet net zero emissions targets by 2050. For businesses, net zero means sustainable services, products that are made from sustainable materials, thorough insulation within workplaces, the promotion of public transport, sustainable distribution and shipping of products, and the use of renewable energy sources. The benefits of Net Zero to businesses include: » Enhance your business reputation – the modern consumer is more likely to become a long-term customer of a brand that works in a genuinely sustainable way with a focus on green credentials. » Reduce energy costs – by installing commercial heat pumps, solar panels, or other types of renewable energy sources at your business, you will significantly reduce your energy consumption. » Become more attractive to investors – in the way the modern customer is more attracted to a business that operates sustainably, the same can be said about investment opportunities. » Stability in process – by adopting electric vehicles or renewable energy sources you can become more self-sufficient and less reliant on sources of power that can be impacted by volatile markets and disruptions. There has been growing interest in Net Zero from business owners of all shapes and sizes throughout the UK, but there is the bystander effect of not wanting to be the first to make a move, when you can see that there isn’t widespread take-up of renewable energy applications. What really needs to happen is greater influence and incentives from above, aligned with suppliers of renewable energy sources, such as commercial heat pumps and solar power, to help businesses make a significant change that goes a long way towards sustainable business practice.
ADVICE & OPINION
On average, 20,000 veterans leave the Armed Forces each year to join the civilian workforce, yet half have a difficult time finding work. With research revealing that over two thirds of veterans who joined the industry felt FM was a good fit for their skills, and 84 per cent of managers agreeing that veterans have the skills that the industry need — this Remembrance Day and beyond, what more could the sector be doing to attract and mobilise veterans?
is key. This isn’t the only issue though. When changing career and faced with a range of job descriptions, it’s easy to start questioning if you have the right skills for a corporate role. With research carried out by Mitie in 2021 finding that many veterans are concerned that a lack of technical skills might prevent them from working in FM, we have work to do in helping ex-services personnel to realise their potential in the industry. Offering work placements is a great way to do this. Our Ready2Work – Military scheme involves support with employment skills, including CV writing and interview preparation, followed by a two-to-four-week placement in
In FMJ's regular monthly column, our team of FM experts answer your questions about the world of facilities management THE EX-SERVICES PERSONNEL’S VIEW
the business area of candidate’s choice. Each candidate is also paired with a Mitie mentor to give them personalised support, build their personal and professional network, MOLLIE GREEN, HEAD OF MITIE develop their confidence, and help them better understand FOUNDATION, MITIE their strengths. I’m immensely proud that seven in 10 of the programme’s graduates have gone on to be Having joined Mitie directly from permanently employed at Mitie or one of our customers. the British Army, I know first-hand From my experience, it’s crucial that guidance doesn’t that moving to civilian life can stop there. I started in the FM industry in a customer-facing feel like quite a transition. The role at a COVID test centre and now head up the Mitie support I’ve had since joining the Foundation – our independent charity helping people FM industry has been invaluable with barriers to employment find opportunities in FM. My to me in finding my feet and Mollie Green confidence to explore new roles is in part, thanks to the developing my career. I’ve been support I’ve had from people who’ve been in my shoes. lucky enough to connect with a lot By creating communities of like-minded of my fellow veteran colleagues, colleagues, we can make sure that all veterans and I know many of us have found in the industry have access to this support. that the skills we gained in the Forces are very In fact, our research showed that a fifth relevant to our roles today. To show the Forces of veterans felt creating employee Given these strong transferable skills, networks would aid a smooth transition reliability, working under pressure, and community that the FM industry is a into civilian life. Our armed forces adaptability to name a few, there are a good option for them, businesses need network, Mitie Military, encourages lot of different sectors trying to attract to be getting out to careers fairs, creating colleagues who are veterans and veterans looking for their first roles dedicated careers portals, like the Mitie their families, to share experiences, in the civilian workforce. To show the building a sense of community. The Forces community that the FM industry Foundation’s Career page, and working group also provides a forum to drive is a good option for them, businesses with charities that connect veterans positive change within the business so need to be getting out to careers fairs, to employers.” everyone can thrive in their careers. creating dedicated careers portals, like As a proud signatory of the Armed Forces the Mitie Foundation’s Career page, and – Mollie Green Covenant and recipients of the Gold Award on working with charities that connect veterans the government’s Defence Employer Recognition to employers. I’m sure most people can relate that Scheme, at Mitie, we’ve shown dedication to when starting a career or changing career path you may supporting the Forces community, and encourage the rest not realise which roles best suit your skills, so awareness Cont. p22 20
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ADVICE & OPINION
of the industry to do the same. I’ve successfully adapted and am enjoying a fulfilling career in FM and know that with targeted initiatives in place, our industry can benefit even more from the skills and expertise the ex-armed forces community has to offer.
FORCES EMPLOYMENT CHARITY’S VIEW LUCY HEAVER, SENIOR EXECUTIVE SERVICES MANAGER, FORCES EMPLOYMENT CHARITY Here are some insights into how our organisation provides support to the military community and links them into different sector pathways in their careers on civvy street, in this case, FM. We can work with you to raise the profile of your company amongst the Armed Forces community, promoting insight days, Lucy Heaver job opportunities, successful case studies, and creating networking opportunities, amongst many other things. We also provide support to companies around ways in which they can retain veteran talent through the development of internal Armed Forces networks and in doing so, recognising the potential that veterans can reach. Facility managers are praised for their ability to adapt to inevitable adversity. They have the ability to push a facility forward efficiently yet able to assertively adapt plans when things go wrong. Veterans bring a huge wealth of experience and transferrable skills to the workplace when they leave the Armed Forces, they also bring significant value to the company that they join. If you would like to understand more about the value that veterans can bring to your company we can come and talk to your internal hiring managers, HR and talent acquisition teams about ‘why military is good for business’ and how you can promote your vacancies with the Career Transition Partnership and those seeking middle to senior management roles. The Forces Employment Charity exists to help all our clients achieve their full potential and in whatever field of work that may be. We provide life-long, life-changing support, jobs, networking and training opportunities to Service leavers, veterans, reservists and their families regardless of circumstances, rank, length of service, or reason for leaving. We also work in partnership with organisations and employers who, like us respect and value the unique qualities and abilities of all those who have served and their families. Further information To find out more about the support that we can offer you to attract and mobilise more veterans into the FM industry, please do get in touch with us at: www.forcesemployment.org.uk 22
CHAIR OF CORPS VETERANS ASSOCIATION’S VIEW NIGEL HORNE, DIVISIONAL DIRECTOR, CORPS SECURITY Undoubtedly, veterans' skills, training, commitment, and work ethic lend themselves to roles within the FM sector, particularly for security services. Corps Security has always been a staunch supporter Nigel Horne of veterans and launched the Corps Veterans Association to unite the veteran community with employment and career advancement on our agenda. The issue veterans face across the FM sector, including security, is that the pyramid is quite steep for them to climb to get into the roles they would typically desire. There is a level of expectation from the individual leaving the forces that they have these skills and, therefore, expect to enter a role within the sector at a management level. However, the training and experiences of many veterans in the armed forces would not naturally provide the skills of a project manager, for example. In the case of security, more specifically, a veteran will have some incredibly transferable skills. However, they can expect to do the same Security Industry Authority courses to obtain their license and upskill when required, too. Essentially, they will have to begin their new career at the bottom rung of the ladder, and for many, this can be hard to swallow, having been in such an influential career for possibly many years. In my opinion, and something we have opened discussions around at Corps Security, is that we must work as a sector (both FM and security) to create a veteran’s fasttrack training and development programme to mitigate the concerns of these individuals. Of course, they will need to begin at the lower end of the pyramid; however, we can provide a defined training and development solution with a structured, defined timeline to get them to the role they desire. Such a solution will work for all areas of FM, make the sector more attractive to veterans for all of us to take advantage of their work skills and ethics, and, in the long term, fill the skills gaps that the sector continues to experience over recent years. There are other considerations when developing such a programme. Many veterans will have families, live in forces' accommodation, and therefore need relocation support. It may be necessary to work alongside organisations such as the Forces Employment Charity to consider relocation packages – which could be a significant investment for our businesses. Still, if the package is desirable in the long term, it would have a positive cost-benefit outcome. Much will need to be considered, discussed, and investigated to ensure that everything in place is desirable for both the Cont. p24
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ADVICE & OPINION
employer and the veteran. Corps would be delighted to work with other organisations to develop a steering group to define the parameters, collaborate to bring leaders together and create an attractive programme suitable for the wider industry. Such a group would also have more comprehensive support from the Corps Veterans Association community, too.
MOD ESTATE PROVIDER’S VIEW ALEX MACRAE, VIVO DEFENCE SERVICES CHAIR OF THE ARMED FORCES KINSHIP NETWORK We are a relatively new company and, from our outset, have been keen to attract veterans. As the largest provider of estate services to the MoD, it is, of course, right we give back to the community we serve. But that’s not the only reason. We know veterans Alex Macrae can make a valuable contribution to our organisation – and the wider FM industry. And they are a great fit for us as they know the culture of our customers and, of course, gel with them. But perhaps more importantly, we find their work experiences have made them resourceful. They have a cando attitude, a strong work ethic and are problem-solvers. In short, they get things done. How do I know? Well, I was in the Royal Navy for over two decades, starting as an engineering apprentice before moving into the submarine service. I know from experience that if you are in the middle of the ocean and there is an engineering fault, you and your team must solve it – whatever it takes. Rising to such challenges creates quite a mindset and all the military people I have worked with have this. One way we in FM can help them, though, is by providing training and work placements. I left the navy in 2004 – serving on HMS Tireless in my last post – but I knew some years prior to that when I would depart and had the time to prepare so I took an HNC and an HND. This helped me start with Serco at MoD Kineton, before joining Amey and then VIVO’s mobilisation team. I am now VIVO’S Technical Compliance Manager. We know military people have huge experience, but they may not have gained the formal qualifications industry require. That is one of the reasons we became an accredited training centre for CITB and IOSH – and offer this to veterans as part of their resettlement. We also provide placements for those wanting to top up their trade skills, making them more prepared when they leave. For example, members of 26 Engineer Regiment (Royal Engineers) recently took part in carpentry, bricklaying, painting and other decorating work at sites 24
we look after. Those that get involved speak highly of our placements. One said it was “the most beneficial three weeks” of his trade career. We have also provided shadow placements with our project management team and, as we have sites over so much of the country, we probably run operations on or near most military bases in England. Importantly, we offer guaranteed interviews for veterans and reservists matching the job profile and we have committed to 20 per cent of our workforce having a military connection. We exceeded this in our first year. We also started our Armed Forces Kinship Network – which I chair - to provide a safe and supportive space for discussing ideas, volunteering opportunities and to offer support to former Armed Forces colleagues. And we have partnered with charities such as Launchpad and our three-armed forces benevolent funds. We also signed the Armed Forces Convenant in our early days, recently gaining a silver award from their Defence Employer Recognition Scheme. Like many FM companies, we are signed up with Buildforce and the Ministry of Defence’s Career Transition Partnership and attend their recruitment events. After all, we are a growing organisation with many vacancies. In short, we are proud of how we are attracting talented veterans and aim to continue. We need them and want them to know they are welcome.
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ON THE INSIDE
Sara Bean visited HMP Onley near Rugby to discover the particular challenges for Amey’s onsite Facilities Management team in maintaining a men’s prison
ccording to figures published by the Parliamentary Justice Committee – as of 8th September 2023, there were 87,128 people in prison in England and Wales; 83,590 in the male estate and 3,538 in the female estate. In October the Lord Chancellor announced to a series of reforms to “make the best use of our prisons” by ensuring there are enough places to lock up dangerous criminals but also give the lowest risk offenders the greatest chance to turn their lives around. Aside from this, the Government’s Prison’s White Paper Strategy has already promised 20,000 additional prison places will be created by the mid2020s - it says it has already boosted prison capacity
by an additional 2,300 places. This has been achieved through measures including a greater use of double occupancy of cells where it is safe to do so and delaying non-urgent maintenance work. What may be not be apparent to those outside the FM sector is that many facilities management providers are contracted to provide prison maintenance. Amey delivers facilities and asset management services, including planned and reactive maintenance, cleaning and project management into 60 Prisons on behalf of the Ministry of Justice (MOJ) and Her Majesty’s Prison and Probation Service (HMPPS), across the North East, North West of England, East and West Midlands and Wales.
HMP ONLEY One such facility is with HMP Onley, a category C prison, also known as a training prison, that houses around 740 inmates. The Prison Authorities provide a range of education and training opportunities on a full-time or part-time basis, covering numeracy, literacy, and IT. Some prisoners can also study for National Vocational Qualifications (NVQs), distance learning courses and other qualifications. Onley was originally built as a Borstal in 1968, was repurposed to house sentenced adults in March 2004 and transferred into an adult category C training establishment in March 2010. The prison also provides training in catering, fork-lift truck driving, gardening, contract work, kitchen work, industrial
cleaning, and recycling. Site Manager Stephen Bailey who runs the Amey facilities management team at HMP Onley first joined the prison staff 17 years ago as a labourer, moved into a maintenance role via an apprenticeship scheme and later took on a supervisor role. He was TUPED into Amey in 2015 when the provider took over the maintenance role and became site manager three years ago. He explains: “Maintaining the whole site is a huge responsibility. As a team we’re tasked with delivering a compliant estate – which can cover anything from managing basic compliance tasks to undertaking routine repairs and remediation works. “We are focussed on supporting the Governor and their team to create better outcomes for the residents. In addition to this we also adopt an advisory role, offering guidance and steer on topics such as energy management and Net Zero strategy which we do alongside other members of the Amey team.” Bailey explained: “There are 12 wings here, housing over 700 prisoners, with the biggest challenge being managing an estate that is constantly in use and which cannot be adapted and upgraded without a significant impact on service delivery and the lives of the prisoners.” Visiting the site, you’re struck by the sheer scale of the institution. All the buildings, some of which date back to the middle of the last century, are contained within a campus like facility, albeit one with high walls and many, many locked gates. In the training facilities we were shown how inmates can acquire the basics construction skills and then move onto working in more skilled areas like carpentry or even how to assemble an electric bike.
MAINTENANCE TEAM Amey’s role in delivering a compliant estate is to support the prison’s aim of encouraging
inmates to go on and achieve meaningful employment on release. To help achieve this the FM team works closely with the prison authorities on a day-to-day basis to ensure facilities are available to support the delivery of training. Explains Bailey: “My immediate team is made up of maintenance staff, cleaners and store operatives and we are supported by a range of contractors, both specialist and general. We work closely with the Governor, their team, and other functional heads of departments. During daily morning meetings, operational issues are raised, and everyone is given the opportunity to support how we rectify the situation and provide continuity to the prison.” The contract is targeted on delivery outcomes, with the
There are 12 wings here, housing over 700 prisoners, with the biggest challenge being managing an estate that is constantly in use and which cannot be adapted and upgraded without a significant impact on service delivery and the lives of the prisoners.”
main focus being planned and reactive maintenance. Ensuring the site remains compliant and operational means it is essential that reactive maintenance is completed swiftly and with minimum impact on the operations of the establishment. “Reactive jobs are wide ranging and cover everything from blocked toilets to significant repairs to the infrastructure. Ensuring the accommodation is fully available is a main priority for HMPPS so an enthusiastic workforce is essential to getting things back in service both safely and quickly. This means we have to make sure we hold a good stock level of essential equipment especially items which are subject to damage in cells.” The Amey team and its suppliers are available 24/7 to support the establishment and occasionally during emergencies support is provided from other Amey maintained prisons to ensure they deliver the operational output required. Adds Charlotte Sanders, Principal Business Improvement Manager at Amey: “We focus quite heavily on the out-of-use cells as there is quite a lot of visibility about these in each prison. It’s important that we provide the prison teams with resilience, so we need to ensure accommodation is available as quickly as possible to support the prisons mission.” The CAFM system is used to log, distribute and report back on engineer tasks and despite the extensive digital restrictions within the prisons estate we have been focusing on how technology and continuous improvement is introduced and managed on the account. An example of this is the creation of digital dashboards to report on site performance. These dashboards give insight into areas such as H&S and compliance as well as NOVEMBER 2023
providing live updates on cell occupancy you also need the right behavioural skills and task registers. The data the teams are to operate safely. Staff undergo specific gathering is essential to both Amey and the training on working in a prison to ensure client in gaining insight and understanding of both their own and inmates’ safety in what how the estate functions and its resilience in can be, at times, a dynamic and interesting the face of diverse challenges. environment. Says Bailey: “The FM team will make “We need to know that the teams we real-time judgements on the level of priority are employing have the right skills and for each reactive task based on their awareness to do this job safely. Part of the extensive understanding of training is to meet health, safety the buildings, the client and security requirements requirements, and but training is the buildings also required occupants. to undertake The FM team will make Priority is responsibilities real-time judgements on the level of always such as door afforded to and lock usage, priority for each reactive task based on ‘life Critical’ and how to their extensive understanding of the systems and move around buildings, the client requirements, and security. a prison in “We have a way that the buildings occupants. Priority is a well-tested will maintain always afforded to ‘life Critical’ system to security standards monitor when and support the systems and security.” services are due, and establishment rather ensure we keep on top than work against them.” of compliance.” The FM team is also in charge of ensuring contractors are chaperoned UNIQUE CHALLENGES around the site by trained escorts. Amey need to ensure their supply chain are not There are of course unique challenges in compromising security or creating risks. providing maintenance services in a prison Working around prisoners sounds like setting, and for Bailey and his team this a daunting task, but according to Bailey: means going through a series of rigorous “Our relationship with the prisoners is good security checks to both enter the prison and –we’re responsive and when they see us move around its environs’. coming onto a wing they know we’re there He explains: “To work in this establishment, to help them; prisoners are naturally curious you’ve not only got to be security vetted, but 30
and often want to talk and find out what is happening on their wing.” He adds: “My main relationship though is with the Governor and the prison authorities whose job is to make sure we’re delivering our contract. Regular meetings, audits and conversations highlight issues with the facility or with delivery of specific items of work but the meetings develop openness which ultimately allows the performance to improve and support the operational output.” However, seeing the maintenance team at work does perk prisoner’s interests. In fact at the Onley site, a prisoner was given the opportunity to work alongside the Amey facilities management team as part of the their ‘Passport into Employment’ programme which gives individuals the opportunity to gain meaningful work experience and employment support to improve employability and reduced reoffending in the last year of their sentence. He was later, in liaison with the Prison, offered the opportunity to join the team full-time upon release and now successfully works as a member of the team playing his full part in delivery of the operation. Bailey also explains how Amey works with current inmates to support the operation across a number of workstreams. “The prisoners often ask the staff about the maintenance jobs,” says Bailey. “It depends on their skills and attitude but working with the prison learning and development team we provide placements, undertaking decoration as part of our unique CRED offering (Clean, Rehabilitative, Enabling and Decent), stores management, grounds maintenance and on some sites supporting technical staff in delivery of maintenance.
EXPANSION The HMP Onley team’s role is going to get bigger as it’s been announced that three new 60-bed houseblocks will be built on the site and the former Rainsbrook Secure Training Centre is set to reopen as an extension of Onley which together will create an additional 311 new prison places on the site. “The most significant change in the future though is to how we operate, the size and skills of the site delivery team is crucial to operations and as you are only as good as your team, I’ll be looking to upskill and develop my colleagues along the way.” Bailey concludes by saying: “I believe that HMP Onley is a more effective prison with Amey delivering facilities services. Our focus on delivery of compliance is the key factor in this and has allowed us to deliver a safe facility to the Governor which in turn supports the rehabilitative training needed to help residents end their sentence and hopefully become productive and integrated members of society.”
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A CLEAN GAME Ricky Majer, Chief Technology Officer at SBFM asks, in an industry reliant on its frontline workforce, are field-based employees getting the recognition they deserve? Could tech and gamification technology be a way to engage and empower cleaning staff?
t’s no secret that the FM sector grapples with a multitude of challenges when it comes to its frontline teams. Recruitment difficulties, high employee turnover, and communication barriers are just a few of the issues faced by the industry. These challenges are nothing new; all FM companies will know them well. Addressing these concerns presents its own trials. Managing widely dispersed cleaning staff is a substantial obstacle for a number of reasons: a significant portion of these operatives operate outside of traditional hours, often in isolated roles at client sites, presenting formidable barriers to achieving meaningful engagement over the years. Indeed, according to YouGov data, almost half of British frontline workers (48 per cent) said they couldn’t “put a face to the name” of most team members they communicate with 32
at head office, leading more than one in four (32 per cent) to say they feel disconnected from their HQ colleagues(i). This is at the same time that The Deskless Report 2023 revealed the top factors driving frontline workers’ happiness and success include recognition, clear communication from head office, feedback, training and upskilling, and adequate technology. Worryingly, some 42 per cent of frontline employees are now contemplating leaving their jobs this year due to the failure to meet these fundamental needs(ii). It’s clear something needs to change. So how can the cleaning industry overcome these challenges? And how do FM companies empower and engage their field-based teams? One approach that has emerged as a potential solution is the use of digital technology and gamification for reward and
THE GAMIFICATION OF CLEANING The concept of digitally driven ‘gamification’ in an industry like cleaning, characterised by low wages and limited career advancement, offers a multitude of advantages worth exploring. For a geographically dispersed frontline workforce, the potential of such a technology-led model to foster connectivity, engagement, and motivation should not be underestimated. This becomes even more critical when considered in the context of the disconnect between frontline workers and office-based staff in the facilities management sector. Gamification and innovative technologies have emerged as powerful tools to bridge this divide. By implementing gamified
approaches and utilising technologydriven solutions, facilities management organisations can create a more cohesive, engaged, and motivated frontline workforce. Gamification strategies can turn routine tasks into engaging challenges, offering employees a sense of achievement and progression in their roles. This represents a powerful ally when it comes to training and upskilling. By integrating game elements and digital tools into their training programmes, organisations can create engaging and interactive learning experiences. This approach not only captures the attention of cleaners but also promotes active participation and retention of essential skills and knowledge. When supported with the real-time feedback and assessment that digital platforms support, it not only enhances the effectiveness of training but also empowers frontline cleaners to excel in their roles, contributing to higher job satisfaction and overall performance. By keeping them in touch with their head office staff, frontline workers feel more connected to their company and in turn their role. Incorporating technology such as mobile apps and communication platforms can facilitate real-time connections among dispersed teams, fostering collaboration and a stronger sense of community. Moreover, the data collected through these technologies can provide valuable insights into workforce dynamics, enabling organisations to tailor their engagement efforts to the specific needs of their employees.
factors that contribute to job satisfaction and helping to avoid potential issues that lead to workforce turnover. Armed with these insights, FM organisations can implement targeted strategies to improve employee retention and satisfaction, ensuring a highly motivated and committed workforce. This is where the dynamic potential of gamification truly shines, placing the power back in the hands of frontline employees.
IDENTIFYING THE STARS At the core of contract performance are individuals like cleaners who tirelessly uphold high standards day in and day out, often with limited recognition from both clients and employers. Technology and gamification can make a real difference here, creating a system where FMs, clients, and frontline staff work collaboratively. In this model, those at the heart of service delivery are empowered through ongoing recognition and rewards. Imagine a model similar to the one employed by companies like Uber, where star ratings are assigned to company employees based on criteria such as attendance, experience, performance, and other relevant factors. These star ratings not only communicate to clients that they have the best personnel at their facilities but, more importantly, they empower frontline teams by providing a sense of value and visibility within the management hierarchy. This opens up new opportunities for career advancement and professional growth. Equally, these ratings can serve as a valuable tool to pinpoint areas where additional training can help individuals
improve their performance. They aid in identifying employees who may need additional support, upskilling them and potentially leading to openings for more shifts and supplemental work to enhance their income.
RECOGNITION AND REWARD Operations and support teams gain the ability to recognise and reward frontline colleagues according to their performance metrics – even when they aren’t in a position to view the actual work being completed or meet with staff in a face-to-face setting. This, in turn, ensures they can consistently deliver an exceptional service to clients because they have confidence in their teams to do so. For frontline cleaners, this empowerment is transformative. It makes them feel seen, heard, and valued, giving them the chance to show off their exceptional work that might have previously gone unseen. Technology has made it possible to work smarter, but most importantly, it’s levelled the playing field. Now anyone, regardless of where they’re based, be it frontline or officebased, can access and use information to their advantage. In a world where FMs need to adapt the way they deliver recognition to meet the needs of their employees, technology systems and gamified learning are just one of the ways that development programmes can have a major impact. By addressing the workforce disconnect and enhancing engagement, organisations can not only improve the overall work experience for their employees but also drive better results for their clients. (i) https://bit.ly/3Qng3Y7 (ii) https://bit.ly/3M7ygHy
The ultimate goal for every organisation is to succeed and grow as a business. One of the key ways to achieve this is to build a culture of motivated and engaged employees who deliver exceptional results for clients. Effective communication and collaboration are vital to the success of this, and yet it is something many organisations still struggle with. Technology and data-powered communication tools, delivered through digital platforms, can enable seamless interactions among fragmented workforces. Real-time updates, task assignments, and performance feedback can be effortlessly delivered through these platforms. Intelligent chatbots or virtual assistants can play a crucial role in enhancing such employee engagement. These virtual assistants offer immediately accessible on-demand support, guidance, and access to resources, fostering a positive and supportive work environment. AI can take this one step further and analyse employee feedback and sentiment data, identifying NOVEMBER 2023
SHREWD SOLUTIONS Kam Singh, Director of Carbon Solutions at EMCOR UK talks to Sara Bean about the benefits of taking a pragmatic approach to energy management
t this month’s Net Zero and Energy Management EMEX exhibition which takes place at ExCeL on the 22-23 November, there is session on how businesses can reduce their energy costs. The panel includes Kam Singh, Director of Carbon Solutions at EMCOR UK. If you get a chance go along and listen to his clear and eminently sensible advice and if not, read on for some refreshingly candid thoughts on why energy management is not all about investing in the latest bells and whistles. Singh’s expertise stretches back over 30 years, beginning with a graduate traineeship in a local authority in Yorkshire on an action programme to encourage engineering graduates from BAME communities into the workplace. He then worked his way up through local authorities for 13 years, during which he became a Chartered Engineer and completed an MBA. After becoming Head of Sustainability at one of the Yorkshire local authority’s, he decided he’d gone as far as he could in the public sector and joined Atkins as an Energy Lead on a major banking contract. He explains: “When I moved over from the public to the private sector it was based on researching what I could achieve in the private sector as I’d seen there were roles there as head of energy and so forth which didn’t at that time exist in the public sector. “I worked at Atkins for a couple of years and then joined a small FM company involved in PFI projects before joining CBRE as Director of Energy in 2010.” He was at CBRE for 12 years delivering endto-end energy, carbon and environmental management strategies for an international property portfolios of blue-chip occupier
clients, before joining EMCOR UK last year. He explains: “At EMCOR UK I work now as the Director of Carbon Solutions, and the role has a slightly different remit. For a start it’s a UK only role but within the UK I am responsible for EMCOR UK and its own carbon footprint and ensuring we achieve our own carbon commitments. “I’m also responsible for the carbon commitments we make to our clients. The way we achieve that is by being aligned to the operational teams within the EMCOR UK business, where each of them has an allocated energy and carbon specialist who works with their accounts to ensure clients are being serviced in terms of their expectations. “You can appreciate that these will differ widely across the portfolio, with some just requiring a quick money saving arrangement to others who want to get to net zero for the estate we’re managing on their behalf.” Singh has long thought that the term sustainability can be misleading: “It’s fluffy and means different things to different
people, and as a result the FM sector has struggled with it. Energy management and carbon reduction are exactly what they say and I’m glad to say have been a core part of our FM offering for a while. “I’m more of a fan of ESG (environmental, social and governance) because it is something that you can turn into specifics. There is space for an ESG framework in the FM sector as you can aim to meet your six or seven E’s, G’s and S’s which means you can ask for example, ‘do we have a modern slavery policy in the organisation’ and adhere to this, ‘do we have a green fleet for all the services we deliver’ and can we translate all the work we do for this particular client into a social value equivalence?’ I’m an engineer at heart and if it’s in numbers I like that it’s framed in that way. “The short answer is that I think we’re moving in the right direction but that’s only as a result of somebody being able to translate into tangible outcomes what sustainable means and what it means to the FM industry.”
ACHIEVING NET ZERO He is also keen to debunk the theory that the only way to achieve net zero is to invest in the latest kit. Instead he advocates getting as much information as you can on your
energy usage, and have a clear strategy of the insights you can get from the data. He points out that any building for the last 30 years that has a demand of above 100kW must provide half hourly metering, so if you can get the half hourly data for your building you can begin to build a profile. “For instance, if the building is occupied between 9 and 5, yet 75 per cent of the energy consumed is irrespective of whether people are in the building or not, what’s going on? That leads you to walk around the building at night to check what is running. “This is energy 101 stuff, without even getting into having lots of data streams from bits of kit. You can do this and for example discover that an air handling unit runs at night time because three years ago there was an evening event and it’s been left on manual then and it’s still on manual now. “I can also guarantee that the 80/20
rule applies to the whole estate, i.e. 80 per cent of your consumption is made by the biggest buildings. The question then goes to the building with a horrendous metric and while a lot of people might suggest ‘let’s put in solar panels,’ the first thing is actually to understand when the control system in the building was reviewed to see if it reflects the occupation of that building. “That brings me to the subject of the energy hierarchy because, to paraphrase my old boss, if everything is leaking through the walls the last thing to worry about is solar panels. So there’s a whole pecking order you need to go through before you make any major investments.” Within the FM sector we’re all too aware that some suppliers make their money by selling an FM contract on cost and making the money on major projects, some of which aren’t worth the effort. Singh’s view is that: “the industry is built on long term relationships and when you’re working on a client premises as a dedicated resource you are more the client and less so the FM. “If the client comes and asks what’s the
If the building is occupied between 9 and 5, yet 75 per cent of the energy consumed is irrespective of whether people are in the building or not, what’s going on? That leads you to walk around the building at night to check what is running.”
Some think Smart Building tech is when you scan your pass at the front door and your desk light comes on, but to me as an engineer it is a pump with a vibration sensor that alerts me when the pump is about to fail...” right thing to do we give them the best advice on what to do in the long run.” As an example, in 2022, an EMCOR UK project team began a major project with Woking Borough Council to help improve its energy and carbon performance. Woking, which had a 17-storey city centre building heated by two 20-year old gas-fired boilers were interested in switching to a district heating and cooling network within the area that was certified as zero carbon. Explains Singh: “Unfortunately, the infrastructure in the building meant it wouldn’t be possible to feed that low-grade heat into the building at the required level. We proposed installing two 400kW heat pumps that could raise the heat level to ensure the building could operate without an upgrade to the whole structure.” The heat pump solution enabled them to secure Government funding for heat decarbonisation while delivering an efficient 36
heating supply that now provides zero carbon heat for the entire building.
SMART BUILDING TECH In recent years it often seems the path to achieving net zero is to invest in Smart Building tech, but again like sustainability Singh believes there’s a danger that people will conflate its meaning. “Some think Smart Building tech is when you scan your pass at the front door and your desk light comes on, but to me as an engineer it is a pump with a vibration sensor that alerts me when the pump is about to fail. This gives me the insight to know I’ve got an opportunity here to avoid any disruption to the building and rather than have a last-minute panic and replace like for like, take the opportunity to find a more efficient replacement.” He also argues that in a post pandemic
world, with buildings which are 80 per cent occupied on a Wednesday, 50 per cent on a Tuesday and Thursday, 30 per cent on a Monday and 20 per cent on a Friday, air handling units may still operate at full capacity all week. By installing CO2 sensors’ that measure the number of people in the building at any time, you can maintain indoor air quality standards and improve energy efficiency. Says Singh: “Using the data I can have a control strategy in the BMS that drives the air handling unit according to the number of people that are in the building. “As FMs that is what we should be aiming to introduce. Smart building technologies that allow us to be much more data driven, both from a maintenance and operational perspective as opposed to just bells and whistles.” Another proposed option for achieving net zero is to move into the most modern green buildings, but for Singh’s team it’s only in cases where a client needs to consolidate their real estate space that would prompt them to suggest an office move. “A stay or go conversation is not simply based on one area but a decision based on which is the most carbon intensive assets, and the worst performing plant and least served by public transport. “Other than that, moving buildings is a piece of advice we rarely give because we tend to find we’re going to have to work with what we’ve got. This usually means going through that same process I’ve listed previously, ‘let’s make it work in the most optimal way as it stands and then do a shopping list of ways of improving it’. “We approach it from a pragmatic building operational perspective, because while the big automation companies may tell us about Smart building innovations, most of them are not applicable to 80 per cent of buildings. “However, I am absolutely for Smart buildings as it applies to the next iteration of a BMS, as these should do much more than just turn your boiler on and off. “A lot of this is about simplifying the process. Some clients are completely bamboozled and think it’s so complicated and steeped in layers of complexity. My challenge to every energy management supplier is that this is not complicated and if you say to a new client, ‘give us a bit of time looking at your estate we will come back and tell you what net zero means to you’. “It’s as easy as that.”
For details on the session at EMEX visit: www.emexlondon.com/conferenceprogramme-1/businesses-reduce-energycosts
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the carbon footprint but also promotes a more ecoconscious approach to water consumption. Neo Q, fostering equality and inclusivity. The Neo Q multi language user interface maximizes the user experience, guiding the consumer through the purchase process with ease. Its overall design embodies accessibility, ensuring that everyone, can gather around and partake in the experience, which fosters a sense of belonging and equality. Beyond its social dimension, Neo Q caters to diverse preferences. From espresso coffee to freshly brewed leaf tea, chocolates, decaf options, and even milk alternatives—the variety of beverages ensures that everyone finds something to savour.
Customer Satisfaction & Wellbeing The introduction of NEO Q often results in increased water and coffee consumption. Its dual offerings of quality water and coffee make it an attractive addition to promote wellness and hydration in your facility, leading to more satisfied customers. This can positively impact your business, attracting new customers and improving customer retention. In a world increasingly focused on sustainability and cost-efficiency, NEO Q emerges as a forwardthinking solution for businesses. By reducing singleuse plastic, saving costs, offering a versatile design, creating new opportunities, NEO Q proves itself as a game-changer in the realm of universal water and coffee services. It’s a prime example of how innovation can serve people, business, and the environment, making it a compelling choice.
For more information visit www.coffetek.co.uk or email: firstname.lastname@example.org or call: +44 (0)1275 844471 NOVEMBER 2023
CLEANING AND HYGIENE
GOING BEHIND THE SCENES OF CLEAN TO CELEBRATE THE HYGIENE HEROES
Rubbermaid Commercial Products (RCP) have gone Behind the Scenes of Clean, visiting dedicated and hard-working cleaning and hygiene teams to thank them for working tirelessly to keep their facilities and venues running smoothly and safely
global series of engagement events, the initiative has seen over 40 events taking place across five countries with over 3,000 cleaning and FM professionals thanked for their efforts. The UK leg of the tour saw RCP – part of Newell Brands visit Edgware Community Hospital, Kanso Facility Management and Sanctuary Supported Living to celebrate the valuable contributions these teams make every day. Aside from being an invaluable opportunity for RCP to speak directly to those who benefit from using their products on a daily basis, it allowed the busy cleaning teams to take some time out of their hectic schedules and to have some fun, win some prizes and feel valued. Ben Clibbery, RCP’s Business Development Manager said of the events: “As experts in the cleaning and hygiene field, we recognise the importance of appreciating the tireless and challenging work cleaning and maintenance professionals undertake every day to keep their visitors safe and comfortable. “The Behind the Scenes of Clean events were
a fantastic opportunity to show our genuine appreciation for hard work that often goes unnoticed, and I thoroughly enjoyed being able to chat to the teams and thank them with some Newell goody bags, a raffle and, of course, some lunch!” A visit to Edgware Community Hospital was a chance to celebrate an incredible team who go the extra mile to keep both patients and staff safe. George Medina, Soft FM Manager North Central East London, added: “It’s been wonderful to get together with the RCP team for this event - it’s not often that our cleaning teams get to take some time away from their roles to spend time together and reflect on the important contribution they make to keeping people safe while they’re here at the hospital.” In fact, it’s this appreciation for the team, that initiated the partnership with RCP in the first place, George explains: “The team here put so much into their roles and care passionately about the wellbeing of everyone who comes to the hospital, so I wanted them to have the best cleaning tools available. “We’ve recently upgraded to lockable healthcare and janitorial carts from our previous clunky equipment, and this has made the world of difference. Not only are they more comfortable for the team to operate, but they help us to be more efficient meaning we can maintain the highest standards of cleanliness, which is so important here.” Another customer in the care sector, Sanctuary Supported Living, wanted to reward a passionate team who were dedicated to supporting some of society’s most vulnerable, providing them with clean and healthy independent living spaces.
Housing Team Leader, Dawn Moreton welcomed the event saying: “It is rare to receive such recognition for a job well done so our team were absolutely delighted to be invited to take part in the Behind the Scenes of Clean celebrations. “The event was another fantastic moment in our partnership with RCP, which has already benefited the cleaning teams by providing them with upgraded equipment which has allowed us to make significant efficiency gains as well as sustainability improvements, something that is incredibly important to us all here.” Finally, the team visited the Kanso Facility Management team, visiting four hotels across London including: Dorsett Hotel, Double Tree Kensington, Heeton Kensington and Luma Hammersmith. These housekeeping teams diligently and consistently provide a five-star level of cleanliness at the hotels. Norma Bresciani, Executive Director at Kanso Facility Management said of the day: “Our housekeeping teams work incredibly hard every day to ensure hotel guests are given the best possible experience and can enjoy a clean and healthy environment during their stay. They never ask to be thanked for their hard work, but I know they appreciated their moment in the spotlight, so it was lovely to see them being treated and celebrating together as a team.
“We are grateful to the RCP team for making this event happen and it has cemented our partnership with RCP perfectly - our housekeeping staff are certainly enjoying using their Quick Carts which have made for much easier transportation of cleaning supplies and guest amenities, as well as giving a more professional and discrete look.” Get involved in 2024 Recognising the importance of thanking the true hygiene heroes in the industry, RCP will be bringing back the Behind the Scenes of Clean events in 2024. Register your interest in taking part here https://bit.ly/49cSslk
If done this way, consider formalising those meetings as a building security council. That way everyone knows and agrees what everyone is doing, and is expected to do.
ACCESS CONTROL AND BUILDING MANAGEMENT
ACCESS Tony Smith, Major Accounts and Marketing Manager at Integrated Design, outlines the benefits of entrance control solutions for multi-tenant offices
ather than a steady stream of employees throughout the week, workplaces now face greater occupancy peaks and troughs. As many businesses look to transform their workspaces, what are the security implications for office buildings that either sublet, have multiple tenants, or operate non-traditional usage patterns like shared co-working spaces? A report from the Office for National Statistics indicated that the great postpandemic return to the office didn’t take place as many predicted. New ways of working have bedded in, perhaps. The pandemic saw many companies that own or rent offices scrambling to sublet superfluous space, as home working kicked in. Traditionally, coworking spaces were used by the self-employed, but even before 40
the pandemic, there were indications that this was changing, with large corporations meeting their office needs, in part at least, through this model.
COMMUNICATION WITH MULTIPLE STAKEHOLDERS In the old days, whoever ran the building ran security, and perhaps liaised occasionally with others, but those others rarely needed to talk to one another. Today, it’s different. If you sublet part of your leased storey, the sub-tenant might be a firm that handles sensitive documents and requires a higher level of security than you, or it might be the other way round, with them wanting to avoid procedures of yours that they regard as red tape. If you are in charge of the building, meet regularly with tenants - all together if useful.
It’s pretty standard for office buildings now to have access control software in use. Your actual barrier might be turnstiles, a simple door wired for RFID fobs or something else. Entrance control hardware should be able to integrate with all of the major access control systems, as well as the standard building management systems – the software used to control heating, air-conditioning, lighting and so on. If you’re the tenant, make use of all the ways these systems can integrate, and if you’re the building owner be aware of how useful tenants and prospective tenants may find this. If you can count the number of people moving through each control point, you can do many things beyond security, such as automatically adjust temperature and turn off unneeded lights to deliver increased building efficiencies. The building owner should also bear in mind that every security system is only as good as its weakest link. Your perimeter system generally establishes the maximum security any tenant can have. If your main entrance has a robust security system, tenants might not require any additional layers of security. If they do, however, it is important to recognise that space may prohibit them from adding an entrance control system of their own such as turnstiles, so other access control systems could be an option.
DETERMINE YOUR SECURITY NEEDS Each stakeholder then needs to decide what security needs they have. How much does it matter to you to control in-building movement by staff and visitors, including of other companies? Do you want to accurately count people as they move, for security or building management purposes? For internal doors, an optical only system can deliver multiple benefits in a small physical housing, and without slowing down the flow of pedestrian traffic. Another point to bear in mind includes thinking about how the system deals with garage entry visitors. And finally, watch out for how things work in practice. For example, if the building owner or main tenant above you, has low security concerns, they may have slipped into a norm of waving people through to ease bottlenecks. By putting a robust system of emergency procedures and drills in place you can ensure that everyone helps support safe and secure access and egress within the entire site.
HEALTHY SETTING Daniel May of Consort outlining the benefits and key considerations concerning the integration of access control systems in healthcare settings
rom patient safety and traversal to the protection of sensitive data and pharmaceuticals, healthcare environments have many operational challenges and modern access control systems may often hold the answers. Hospitals in particular have developed into multifaceted spaces that house hundreds to thousands of patients, staff and visitors at any one time. In England for example, research has found in the three months leading to June 2023, an average of 44,626 people visited major hospital A&E departments each day, with over 16 million attendances typically recorded over the course of a year - not to mention an additional nine million logged at other minor units. Patient safety will always remain top priority in healthcare and when it comes to healthcare premises specifically, patient security and perimeter security often come hand in hand and are amongst the most pressing of challenges that decision makers must face. To help address operational planning and potential design concerns in the NHS, the Health Building Note (HBN) , provides general design guidance for healthcare buildings under HBN 00-01 - citing the use of access control measures as a way of maintaining security and protecting the safety of patients, staff and visitors.
any unwanted visitors and opportunists. Regulations set a minimum standard for how personal data should be stored and managed in healthcare environments, giving decision makers an added responsibility to regulate staff-controlled areas with patient medical records. While instances of personal data breaches are rare, healthcare facilities are at legal risk should confidential data be found misused or missing. This is why the incorporation of access control systems has become essential in keeping data storage areas secure, with intuitive online systems capable of permitting access to staff with the correct credentials while simultaneously tracking who has requested clearance at digital entry points. To function effectively, healthcare facilities must always be perceived as a safe place by the people who reside within them, and as HBN guidance implies, a unified physical security system can help address key safety and security concerns while enhancing patient and staff experience. Today’s access control systems are more accessible and adaptable than ever and combine several technologies such as mechanical locks and automatic doors, with electronic access credentials in the form of smartphone apps, badge readers and biometric scanners. By integrating these systems into the building’s existing infrastructure, healthcare professionals are better equipped to control the sheer volume of people entering and exiting the premises without impairing the general flow of movement and coordination around the facility.
Today’s access control systems are more accessible and adaptable than ever and combine several technologies such as mechanical locks and automatic doors, with electronic access credentials in the form of smartphone apps, badge readers and biometric scanners.”
VARABLE ACCESS Hospital buildings must control varied levels of access for a number of operational and security purposes. Vulnerable patients may be under monitoring and refrained from exiting the premises for their own safety, while at the same time, permitted staff must be able to reach their patients and medicines when required. For this, the use of access control is key. Equally, access credentials can also help management teams keep track of those who may be entering or exiting rooms with equipment and pharmaceutical supplies, deterring
systems that are being put in place throughout each of the touchpoints in a facility. Clear collaboration is required during periods of specification, where together, teams can ensure the selected product works on all angles, from meeting fire safety and sustainability standards to aesthetics and scalability. Frequently overlooked, scalability is a key area to review when selecting access control systems. Such is their diverse nature; healthcare facilities can often change and develop as years go by, and by selecting a system that facilitates growth - such as a cloud-based solution - security and efficiency is long-established. While modern access control products are known for seamless integration, there are some systems that may restrict the ability to use different vendors throughout the remainder of the building’s infrastructure. This, in effect, causes a monopolisation of products throughout the estate, which can have an adverse effect on growth by increasing costs and reducing the levels of service associated with the security system already in place. A scalable and reliable access control system will continue to improve security and safety by adapting to a building’s new requirements - and all while having minimal impact on its operational network. And so, while technology will no doubt continue to influence and transform the access control market, healthcare facilities and their professionals must continue to remain educated on their own systems, ensuring they have the best options in place to keep their patients, staff and visitors safe and secure for years to come.
BETTER BY DESIGN Despite the clear benefits offered to healthcare facilities, there are a number of considerations to be mindful of when choosing an access control solution. Poorly implemented systems can have an adverse effect on security and functionality - quickly costing healthcare organisations time and budget to rectify and replace the inadequate products that don’t meet the building’s requirements. There is no single solution that fits all healthcare buildings. As such, it’s crucial to understand the NOVEMBER 2023
MOBILE CREDENTIALS Terry Sallas, Director of Major Projects at Chubb Fire & Security, explains why businesses are increasingly moving towards biometricsecured mobile credentials as their preferred access control method
support to their iOS and Android mobile wallets, which are both protected by biometric security. Their endorsement adds further trust and reliability to the mobile credential system, and the security features of Apple Wallet and Google Wallet far exceed anything achievable with access cards alone.
SEAMLESS USER EXPERIENCE Contactless payments are now second nature to most of us, so accessing facilities and unlocking doors using the same approach requires minimal additional effort or thought. FM teams don’t need to worry about training employees to use the access points; they only need to refer to an already familiar and convenient process.
ccess control is one of the cornerstones of effective facilities security management. For years, radiofrequency identification (RFID) access cards have allowed businesses to restrict entry to employees or approved guests and improve the protection of people, property, and assets. Irregular entry patterns – a consequence of hybrid working arrangements following the COVID-19 pandemic – have increased the importance of access safeguards even further, and businesses have questioned the suitability of access cards to meet heightened access control requirements whilst providing a seamless experience for the user and limiting environmental costs. Cards can easily be misplaced or stolen, putting sensitive areas at risk. Replacing lost cards incurs financial and environmental costs, and many employees find carrying around an extra item solely for access control inconvenient. Leveraging user familiarity with mobile biometric security, businesses are increasingly moving toward biometricprotected near-field communication (NFC) mobile credentials as their preferred access control method and taking advantage of some key benefits compared to RFID access cards.
REDUCED RISK We are all aware of the problem of lost access cards. They are easily forgettable and often 42
misplaced, and employees regularly request replacement cards. Each lost card creates a security risk – any person finding the card immediately inherits all the access rights of the original owner, so a lost card exposes a significant vulnerability in the access control system. Employees are naturally more protective of their phones than access cards. But even when a phone is lost, a person finding it cannot easily access it. With mobile credentials stored securely on smartphones, protected by PINs or biometrics, the risk of unauthorised access is significantly reduced. The environmental costs of lost cards and additional plastic manufacturing are also worth considering. Replacing access cards with mobile credentials can significantly decrease the production and disposal of plastic cards and eliminate the associated expenditure.
LEVERAGING EXISTING NFC TECHNOLOGY One of the main advantages of mobile access control is its seamless integration with existing smartphones. Nearly everyone today carries an NFC-enabled smartphone, and leveraging this capability eliminates the need for additional equipment and encourages participation from users who are already comfortable using their phones for contactless payments. As mobile credentials have become an increasingly popular method of controlling access, Apple and Google have added
Many mobile access control systems operate on a subscription model—employing a flexible approach to access rights deployment with regular costs that are easy to build into budget planning. Subscriptions tend to be per 100 or 1000 users, and when an employee leaves the company, the security team can immediately revoke the credentials and assign them to a new user. Without the requirement of a physical object, security teams can deploy credentials to new users remotely, saving the delivery of an access card and allowing occasional office visitors to register for multiple sites on the day their contract starts.
BEFORE SWITCHING TO MOBILE CREDENTIALS While mobile access controls offer numerous advantages over access cards, they do not mitigate all vulnerabilities. Employee engagement and responsibility remain crucial, and all staff must still exercise caution when holding the door for others, for example. They should also, of course, never share their mobile devices or grant access to unauthorised individuals. Access cards are traditionally held on lanyards printed with company branding and offer a visible cue to employees regarding who is and who isn’t permitted to be on the premises, so removing them may lead to uncertainty when new colleagues appear in the building. However, branded cards and lanyards create a risk by identifying the building a found card can access. On balance, it is better for staff to ask questions than to assume an individual is welcome just because they have a coloured ribbon around their neck. Effective communication and training can address any minor issues arising from the shift to mobile credentials. They certainly shouldn’t detract from the improvements to security, user experience, sustainability, and employee onboarding made possible by biometric-secured mobile credentials. FMs not already utilising this technology should seriously consider the opportunity to do so in their upcoming projects.
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SAFE SHORES Ian Pugh Director of PAL Protect, the consultancy division of Anchor Group Services provides an update on the protect duty law and the benefits of SHORE accreditation
Select Committee who published their findings on the 27th July and in their report they raised their concerns about the proportionality of the bill, especially in relation to small business and voluntary organisations and whether the provisions in the bill will adequately reduce the threat of terrorism. They also felt that there were areas of the bill that could be improved upon. The commitment from Figen Murray and others who have been instrumental in getting this far remains and they are encouraging individuals and organisations to write to their constituent MP to encourage the Government to continue with this draft legislation and pass it into law. PAL Protect Consultancy a division of Anchor Group Services fully supports work undertaken to create the Protect Duty legislation and as a Director of PAL Protect, in my previous role as Group Head of Security at intu plc was involved with the initial consultations with the Home Office around the proposed bill.
igen Murray is the mother of Martyn Hett who, at 29 years of age, was tragically killed in the terrorist attack at Manchester Arena in May 2017. Figen has been campaigning for the introduction of legislation in requiring public spaces, entertainment venues, places of worship, museums, education establishments and government buildings to better protect employees, visitors and the wider public from terrorist attacks. Supported by leading figures within the Security and Policing community, Murray’s determination and passion to see legislation passed has resulted in HM Government publishing the Terrorism (Protection of Premises) draft bill or commonly known as the Protect Duty/Martyn’s Law. The “Protect Duty” once passed into law will place requirements on organisations who own or who operate qualifying public places to evidence that they are managing those places safely in deterring and minimising the threat and impact of terrorism to the public.
DRAFT LEGISLATION Some key elements of the draft legislation are: The law will apply to premises with a capacity of more than 100 persons Premises with a capacity of 800 persons or more will be classed as enhanced duty premises 44
The law will apply to premises with both express permissions to enter and implied permission to enter The law will apply to premises within premises i.e., shops in shopping centres if capacity is over 100 persons The law will apply to owners of the premises but responsibilities for compliance are likely to apply also to operators of the premises A standard terrorism evaluation will be required for each qualifying premises Enhanced premises will require an enhanced terrorism risk assessment to be completed There will be a duty to provide terrorism training to persons working in qualifying premises A person must be appointed by the qualifying premises as the designated senior officer to ensure that all reasonable measures have been taken in accordance with the legislation Premises must have a security plan in place Requirement for persons working within a qualifying premises to co-operate with the qualifying premises Contravention and restriction notices will apply for non-compliance Penalty notices will be enforced if breaches of the legislation are identified The bill has been scrutinised by the Home Affairs
SHORE CERTIFICATION PAL Protect have recently been announced as the only UK Partner for SHORE Certification, the only Global solution for evaluating and certifying operational risk with the Safe Asset Group. SHORE stands for SAFE, Hospitality, Offices, Retail and Exhibitions. It delivers confidence to organisations that their management processes and risk management strategy is protecting not only their asset but their employees and the public who may visit or stay in them in providing a safe environment. Major asset owners and property managers in Europe and across the world have for some time now seen the benefits of having an external review to measure the optimum performance of their asset by adopting SHORE. SHORE will work alongside any legal requirements that may come from the Protect Duty in the UK if it is passed into law in providing evidence that all aspects of an organisations risk resilience strategy is assessed, evidencing that all management process are in place to mitigate and manage all risks and not just the threat of terrorism. I would encourage UK Asset owners and operators to engage to understand more and follow their European and Global colleagues to achieve SHORE Certification and demonstrate that they already own and operate safe places whilst awaiting the outcome of the Protect Duty proposed draft legislation.
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WASTE & RECYCLING
VALUABLE WASTE Nathan Gray, Head of Sustainability at Reconomy believes leadership is key for facilities managers waste management strategies
hen we speak to facility managers and employers running workplace recycling and sustainability schemes on their sites, we hear the same grumbles time and time again. Recycling facilities have been put in place but are not being used properly. Employees don’t understand the importance of recycling, even at the basic level of putting the correct waste in the correct bin, and costs are racking up as a result. Yet when we get under the skin of what is going on in these environments, we often find a mis-match between words and actions. Or rather a misdirection of effort and investment. FMs are spending significant time and expense putting in place processes and infrastructure which they think will drive greater sustainability but they are often looking to run before they can walk. This means they are often implementing systems which aren’t joined up and can struggle to achieve employee buy-in – crucial to the success of any workplace scheme.
FIRST STEPS Our fundamental recommendation is to start at the very beginning with a waste audit because it’s crucial to understand the current waste being produced in your office. Once businesses can identify the types and quantities of waste being generated, they will be able to pinpoint areas of improvement more efficiently. By analysing the waste stream and categorising it, your office can determine which materials can be recycled and this knowledge will form the foundation for your strategy. Alongside this, because you can only manage what you can measure, data and technology are pivotal to capturing the information needed to make these alterations. The next step feeds into engaging employees to buy into a culture of sustainability and this requires a degree of social engineering and nudge theory. Offices must make it as easy as possible for employees to make the correct decisions and develop positive habits that will in turn become ingrained in longer-term behaviours. For example, make recycling convenient and accessible for everyone in the office by setting up well-organised recycling stations. Place clearly labelled bins in easily accessible areas, such as canteens, scanning rooms, and near workstations. Ensure that each bin clearly indicates the type of recyclable material it is meant for, such as paper
cup recycling, plastic recycling, glass recycling, or food recycling. Clear signage and educational posters can also help educate employees about what can and cannot be recycled – which they can then take into their private lives. It is not just about managing waste but reducing it wherever possible. One of the most significant areas of waste in an office environment is paper, so measures that encourage employees to adopt digital practices, such as using electronic documents instead of printing, sharing files online, and utilising cloud storage can bring tangible benefits. Additional steps include establishing a system for recycling used paper and ensuring confidential waste is handled properly before recycling.
LEADING THE CHANGE Once these systems are in place, education and leadership from the management team becomes key, as promoting office recycling requires active participation from all employees. This means organising awareness campaigns and training sessions to educate staff about the importance of recycling, the benefits it brings, and the specific recycling guidelines in your office. Inspire employees to take ownership of their recycling habits by providing them with information on how their efforts contribute to a greener workplace. Consider creating a recycling committee or designating recycling champions to drive engagement and maintain enthusiasm for sustainable practices. And, of course, leadership support is absolutely critical here. There is no good putting in place awareness campaigns if employees see the CEO or office manager dropping their takeaway coffee cup into the
wrong bin or regularly using non-recyclable, single-use items. They must lead by example. Ultimately, though, leaders and managers cannot be expected to juggle their roles with devising and implementing high-impact waste management strategies.
WASTE & RECYCLING
ONE MAN’S TRASH... Fairview Facilities Management, Chief Operating Officer Venesa Coodien on how suppliers can help clients realise the value of waste
VALUE OF PARTNERING That is why partnering with specialist companies can provide invaluable support in rapidly getting the right infrastructure in place along with the measures that will get buy-in from colleagues. These partners can offer guidance on best practices, help set up recycling programs, and provide resources for recycling bins and collection services. Collaboration can also ensure that recyclables are appropriately sorted, collected and sent to recycling facilities. This advice can be holistic and is not solely constrained to bins. Specialists can provide broader, more holistic guidance on integrating sustainability practices into a central role in the business’ operations, to ensure an end-to-end approach from procurement to recycling. This might include, for example, introducing reusable strategies where possible in order to help combat single-use plastic waste. By switching to reusable food and drink containers, there are significant cost savings over a three-year period for businesses as well as environmental benefits given that in the UK alone, 10.7 billion single-use food and drink take-out packaging containers are discarded each year after being used just once. Ultimately, when FMs and office managers are frustrated and confused as to why their well-meaning attempts to foster a culture of sustainability in the workplace aren’t working as hoped we can work with them to make improvements. This doesn’t mean adding in a lot of cost or gimmicks – it revolves around simple, logical steps that can help make circularity easier for all concerned.
ne particular area where there is opportunity to save money and add value, is around recycling and waste management. Our due diligence often reveals that a company’s recycling processes at each site are inadequate and that they are missing out on the opportunity to recover significant rebates. Because they do not always have the time to expect their own staff to separate waste these clients may be paying companies to take waste away from their premises and facilities. Our on-site staff can separate waste for them, so that it can be collected by the correct recyclers. As a result, clients make money from their waste – sufficient to more than cover the cost of the process, because each month, for each waste stream according to tonnage, we receive a rebate from the recycler, which we pass on to our client. Improving sustainability is the ultimate aim, but adopting processes and procedures to ensure correct separation and collection allows clients to understand and embrace the fact that waste has value. Rebates can be achieved across all types of waste, from cardboard, through most plastics, to aluminium and steel, realising a previously untapped, viable revenue stream.
people to see a bin and just throw waste into it, without considering what needs to happen next. It’s important to provide the correct range of bins, appropriate signage and education. Encourage best practice by putting up posters which emphasise the importance of correctly separating waste and explain that by so doing, it has a value, bringing income, rather than incurring cost. In this way you can influence a change in the culture throughout a business, so that everyone plays their part in ensuring that waste is properly recycled and achieves its full value.
EDUCATION IS KEY In every business, education is key to efficient waste management. When you get down to behaviour in common and rest areas, we still witness the tendency for NOVEMBER 2023
WASTE & RECYCLING
CUP RECYCLING STACKS UP New legislation for disposable cups calls for on-site collections and data reporting. Hannah Osman, Manager of the National Cup Recycling Scheme, explains what businesses need to do to prepare WHAT’S STOPPING US? While the UK specialist paper mills have the capacity to recycle every paper cup sold the number of cups collected falls short. The new legislation aims to address this gap. As the administrator of the National Cup Recycling Scheme, Valpak has already been approached by cafeterias and coffee shops looking for advice on how to get ahead by setting up a collection system, or asking for support with collection boxes or collating data. This year, we launched a dedicated collection box for cups that holds up to 500–1,000 cups and is replaced when full.
BOXES AND BINS Although every café will have features like sinks, kettles and counters, the size and style of each site varies, so the size and style of boxes or bins needs to adapt too. In an airport, for example, security concerns mean that waste must be collected in clear bags, while an office might use a collection box. In a busy public area, a tube stack is often more suitable for initial collection, before cups are transferred to a larger box.
atering is a complex business. As well as purchasing, storing and preparing consumables, managers need to think about the customer experience, handle cleaning contracts and set up efficient waste management systems. From October 2025, when new legislation comes into force, on-site cafés will also need to think more carefully about the way they deal with disposable cups. Under the new regulations, businesses with more than 10 staff FTE (full time employment), which sell filled, fibre-based beverage cups to staff or to customers will need to comply. As well as reporting twice a year on the volume of cups sold and the weight of cups sent for recycling, they will also be required to host take-back schemes on-site. Collections must be brand-neutral, and accept any cup, including those which have been purchased at other locations.
WHY DO WE NEED TO RECYCLE CUPS? According to Valpak research* produced for WRAP (Waste and Resources Action Programme), half a million single-use coffee cups are thrown away in the UK every day. If we dispose of them properly, we can reduce carbon, as well as the volume of waste sent to landfill or energy recovery. Setting up a recycling collection also helps businesses to improve recycling rates and is a popular move with consumers.
ARE CUPS REALLY RECYCLABLE? 48
The good news is, yes! Single-use cups can be recycled up to seven times, and we already have the capacity to recycle every one of the 3.2 billion singleuse cups generated in the UK.
HOW CAN CUP RECYCLING HELP BUSINESSES REACH NET ZERO? Recycling reduces a cup’s carbon emissions by 50 per cent. To give an idea of scale, one NHS trust with three hospitals and over 5,000 staff can produce around 1,000 cups a day. In just a short time, the carbon impact of recycling can really stack up.
DATA When the new legislation comes into force, organisations will need to report twice a year. This is an entirely new requirement, and businesses are more likely to hold this information by number of cups than in the required tonnage format. In our work around packaging compliance, sourcing the correct weights is often one of the greatest challenges. Valpak regularly weighs products to provide producers with reliable data, and we advise obligated businesses to plan ahead.
Cups need to be collected as a separate waste stream, with all the liquids removed, so the system needs to incorporate a way to remove liquids – either via a sluice box or down a nearby sink. Although minor contamination is acceptable, collection bins and tubes in public areas tend to see higher levels of contamination. To encourage participation and prevent contamination, education is crucial. The clearer we can make things, the more chance we have of waste being placed in the right bin. For Valpak’s own cup box take-back scheme, we advise on the best places to position bins and provide clear signage to make things easier.
CONSUMER COOPERATION To incentivise members of the public and staff to return their cups for recycling, some outfits offer discounts similar to those offered for reusable cups. Valpak’s consumer research shows support for this. Interestingly, the majority of respondents (61.55 per cent) were also willing to pay a slightly higher price to fund the recycling of disposable cups – almost 96 per cent said they would use a high street recycling bin designed for disposable cups. With consumer appetite for cup recycling on the rise, the legislation has arrived at just the right time. Although take-back and data reporting may represent a challenge, businesses have two years to prepare. Those that begin now will reap the rewards. *More info https://bit.ly/477Qhxp
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FULFILMENT RATE on all our 4-hour response SLAs
80-100 CALLS AVERAGED annually over the last 20 years
FUEL STORAGE SOLUTIONS OPERATES NATIONWIDE WITH A TEAM OF EXPERIENCED OFTEC REGISTERED ENGINEERS OUT ON THE ROAD • INSPECTIONS: FSS inspects over 1,000 sites annually - from a single 201 ltr tank location up to sites storing over 1 million litres of oil • COMPLIANCE: FSS keeps you compliant with UK oil storage regulations avoiding environmental catastrophe and costly clean ups • PPM: FSS offers flexible contracts starting with 2-hour response times
Your Fuel Specialists Call our CATS team on 01274 813003 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
to arrange OFTEC inspections and PPM plans
UK Business Awards 2019 WINNERS & FINALISTS
Power Industry Awards 2018 FINALISTS
AMPS Awards 2016 & 2017 WINNERS
RECIPIENT OF THE KING’S AWARD FOR ENTERPRISE
CASE STUDY - SOFTWARE
DIRECT RESULTS FMJ hears how Matrix Booking is working to transform the future of work for Direct Line Group with a software solution that goes beyond a simple workplace booking system
experience. Thorburn explains how, when faced with this hurdle, the team pulled together to find a way to overcome the complications. Working together, they decided they needed to link the “new booking system with [the] access control system by developing an API, and only providing access if employees had a resource booked”.
A NEW HOPE Direct Line Group partnered with Matrix Booking, who proposed they create a resource booking system that would integrate the Group’s access control system. This solution would ensure that only those who had made a reservation could enter the building and also provide confirmation of attendance against the booking made. Following a successful testing period, the company was able to roll out the system in December 2022. Thorburn recalls: “We chose Matrix Booking for several reasons. While the cost was very competitive and demonstrated real value for money, the team also made us feel secure in the knowledge that they will give us focus and excellent customer service.”
SMOOTHER AND SAFER WORKPLACE EXPERIENCE
irect Line needs little introduction. At some point in our lives nearly everyone has seen the famous red phone appear on their screens. Formed in 2012 by Royal Bank of Scotland Group’s (RBS) insurance division, the Direct Line Group (DLG) comprises several well-known brands including Green Flag, Churchill, and of course, Direct Line. Whether in an office or in a repair centre, DLG has approximately 10,000 employees serving customers across the UK. The COVID-19 pandemic resulted in the widespread adoption of hybrid working. DLG needed to adapt to this changing landscape to support its employees in delivering the best service possible and ensuring their safety at work. This is where Steve Thorburn, Security Assurance Manager for DLG Property comes in. Responsible for shaping the future of working at DLG, Thorburn and the Property team ensure that employees are supported in their work, while also maintaining their safety and security.
THE HYBRID REVOLUTION DLG first began exploring the available options for an intuitive resource management system that was flexible, mobile and easily accessible back in 2017. Three years later, as with many organisations, Direct Line Group was required to implement strict 50
pandemic measures, such as Track and Trace and social distancing. As hybrid working became the norm worldwide, a common challenge emerged. Many companies faced issues with their workspace reservations. Some workspaces filled up with walk-ins despite being booked, while others remained empty because workers failed to show up on the allocated day and time. DLG was determined to find a solution that went above and beyond a simple workplace booking system. It had to be a solution that would show not just the reservations made, but most importantly the reservations that were fulfilled. It was essential for both the property and leadership teams to capture data that would provide accurate and trustworthy occupancy insight. The plan was to then use this information to shape the property strategy.
THE SEARCH BEGINS During its search for a solution, Direct Line Group found that most providers suggested using QR codes and lights to manage desk bookings. However, the property team soon realised that this method relied too heavily on employee behaviour, having to check devices or manually check in. It was time to find something that could eliminate the extra step, something that could provide a smoother
Direct Line Group has been able to better support its employees in the workspaces. With the ability to monitor office activity, it soon became clear how many bookings were made and, more importantly, how many were fulfilled. The property team could also gain a better understanding of the cadence of employees’ use of the office and alter resource allocation accordingly. This led to a more sustainable approach to operations. For example, after the first few months of implementation, Direct Line Group found that of all bookings made, only around 65 per cent were being fulfilled. With only two thirds of people turning up, DLG was able to scale down resourcing to a suitable level.
WHAT THE FUTURE HOLDS Thorburn says: “The Matrix Booking technical team have been excellent. I am excited to see the new developments ahead of us and looking forward to how these will further enhance the way that we work at Direct Line Group.” Matrix Booking will continue to work with DLG to analyse the workspace occupancy and identify the areas that require improvement. These can then be addressed to improve the working environment and employee satisfaction. In addition, the data drawn from the system will help DLG to guide its facilities provision, property and environmental strategies for the coming years. Thorburn adds: “My advice to anyone looking to undertake a similar project is to be clear on your operational requirements, but do not let them become a restriction. Start by creating user stories for each user type and map their needs to ensure the product meets both your departments’ and the building users’ needs. Understanding the subtle differences in web and app functionality is also key, ensuring that the system is readily available to all.”
MONTH IN FM
22nd & 23rd January 2024 Radisson Blu Hotel, London Stansted Airport The FM Forum is a highly focused event speciﬁcally organised for senior professionals who are directly responsible for the purchasing of FM facilities and those who provide products and services within the sector. The Forum consists of one-to-one business meetings, interactive seminars, and valuable networking opportunities, all in two days! Full hospitality will also be included throughout.
Scan here to ﬁnd out more
Paige Oakman 01992 374094 email@example.com
INTRODUCING XYLIA 2 – A NEW GENERATION OF BUTTERFLY VALVE Watts Industries UK is thrilled to announce the launch of its latest butterfly valve innovation, the cutting-edge Xylia 2. Built on over 70 years of experience, Xylia 2 is the newest butterfly valve from the leading brand in anti-pollution. Designed and built by our worldclass SOCLA division, this new valve offers precision, efficiency, and reliability for a wide range of industries and applications. Xylia 2 valve boasts a compact construction that maximises the space in commercial buildings with limited plant room space. With sizes available from DN50 to DN300, the valve allows system design flexibility while delivering smooth and efficient fluid handling across various applications. "We are excited to introduce this compact and durable valve to the UK market,” said Kerry Harris Sales Director UK of Watts Industries UK. "More than six million of our butterfly valves are already installed worldwide and Xylia 2 reflects our commitment to providing innovative and reliable valve products to our customers that are low maintenance and deliver a long service life.” For more information about Xylia 2 or our other butterfly valve products, please call us on 01480 407074 or email (firstname.lastname@example.org)
https://wattsindustries.co.uk email@example.com 01480 407074 NOVEMBER 2023
TO ADVERTISE IN MONTH IN FM PLEASE CONTACT DANNY.GRANGE@KPMMEDIA.CO.UK OR CALL 01322 476811
MONTH IN FM
CCF’S CARBON REPORTING TOOL RECOGNISED WITH GOOGLE AWARD
NEW ALTRO ILLUSTRA DRAWS INSPIRATION FROM THE NATURAL WORLD
The new carbon reporting tool that is currently being trialled by insulation, drywall and ceiling product distributors CCF is one of the key initiatives that has helped parent company Travis Perkins plc secure a prestigious award win. The Group has been presented with the 2023 Google Cloud Customer of the Year Award, Cross Industry in recognition of its commitment to net zero and its data-driven approach to improving fleet efficiency and reducing carbon emissions for deliveries to customers. CCF’s comprehensive carbon reporting tool provides information on the carbon emissions relating to the delivery of products to site for CCF customers. The tool is currently in its trial phase, and CCF is looking forward to expanding its capabilities to also include the embodied carbon of the products, which will enhance insight and transparency for tangible carbon savings. Stefano Quatrini, Regional Sales Director at CCF said: “Such a respected award recognises the commitment we all have to achieving net zero. We’re proud to be part of a Group that is paving the way for improved services to our customers and the rest of the industry when it comes to sustainability, and we’re thrilled that CCF’s new carbon reporting tool has helped achieve this recognition.”
Altro continues to innovate with the launch of Altro Illustra™ – a class-leading safety floor with stunning natural aesthetic designs and the option to go adhesive-free to save carbon, money and time. The latest development from Altro draws inspiration from the natural world with a range that delivers visual texture and softness yet provides all the performance characteristics you’d expect from the longestablished surfaces innovator and authority on safety flooring. With sustainability ever-higher on the agenda, Altro Illustra is available in both adhesive-free and traditional adhered options, providing versatility and flexibility for various installation requirements. Whichever option you choose, Altro Illustra is engineered to offer superior slipresistance, minimising the risk of accidents. It comes with Altro’s ‘One in a Million’ slip risk for life guarantee. The floor is available in three distinct pattern groups with visual textures to bring depth to your designs: natural stones, modern textiles and muted minerals. These designs offer a harmonious blend of style and functionality with natureinspired textures and softness to help create and enhance feeling of wellbeing within spaces. In addition to its sustainability, style and safety features, Altro Illustra offers easy maintenance and durability, incorporating Altro Easyclean™ technology. The floor is designed to withstand heavy foot traffic and resist stains, making it suitable for busy environments.
THE WORK TROUSER AND KNEEPAD SYSTEM TO FIT YOUR JOB Superior, Ergonomic Knee Protection It’s said that hard-working craftsmen and women put more pressure on their knees than many top athletes. That’s why the risk of knee injuries is far higher among trade professionals and manual workers than other occupations. One of the best ways to avoid knee problems is to wear Snickers Workwear Trousers with their innovative knee protection – KneeGuard™ - a world-leading, fully certified, trademarked system. Snickers Workwear has 86 different types of Work trousers in multiple sizes to suit a host of different trades and jobs on site - plus 8 different types of Kneepads. Together they deliver hundreds of Work Trouser and Kneepad combinations to effectively deal with different types of knee impacts; the amount of time working on knees; and individual needs for personal protection. The unique design features of both the Work Trousers and Kneepads deliver flexibility when you walk, yet they close around your knees when you kneel down – to prevent your knees from sliding off the kneepad when moving around on the floor. So, when you’re seriously considering long-lasting knee protection, look for the Snickers Workwear KneeGuard™ system - tested and certified for performance, efficiency and protection to deliver comfort and wellbeing day in day out. www.snickersworkwear.co.uk firstname.lastname@example.org
VITAL EV INSTALLS THE UK’S FIRST 400KW LIQUID-COOLED KEMPOWER SATELLITE CHARGERS AT UTAC Vital EV has commissioned the UK’s first liquid-cooled 400kW Kempower Satellite Chargers – believed to be the fastest charger in the UK – at the famous automotive testing facility in Bedfordshire. The two 400kW chargers, along with two 260kW chargers, will be used to charge prototype and production vehicles. UTAC Millbrook Proving Ground was opened in 1970 as the main testing facility for Vauxhall and Bedford brands. Now owned by French vehicle testing company UTAC, it continues play a major role in the development of vehicles as a performance testing centre for specialist and mainstream manufacturers from all over the world. Over the past couple of years, Vital EV has been supporting the development of new electric vehicles at UTAC Millbrook with the 40kW Kempower Movable Charger, in addition to powering the test drive sessions at high-profile automotive events such as Company Car In Action and LCV Cenex. When the requirement came for a high-powered, permanent charging solution, the management team of UTAC opted for Vital EV’s expertise in delivering complex and bespoke DC charging with their unrivalled aftersales support. Each of the four Kempower Satellite Chargers is dynamically powered by the 500kW Power Unit, which helps make best-use of their grid supply. The two 400kW chargers are fitted with liquid-cooled cables which are rated to 500A and capable of 500kW short-term boost. www.vital-ev.co.uk 03339 960978
MONTH IN FM
PLANON REAL ESTATE MANAGEMENT FOR SAP S/4HANA NOW PREMIUM CERTIFIED AS SAP ENDORSED APP AS PART OF SAP’S INDUSTRY CLOUD PORTFOLIO The solution helps improve decision making, operational agility, and sustainability for the corporate real estate and commercial real estate industries
lanon has announced that its Planon Real Estate Management solution for SAP S/4HANA® is now an SAP endorsed app. Integrated with both SAP S/4HANA and SAP S/4HANA Cloud, the Planon platform including its cloud solutions, databases and technical set-up has been tested by SAP experts for integration, security code compliance, cloud quality and delivery requirements. Following its SAP partnership announcement in May, Planon’s now premium certified product is available on SAP® Store as part of SAP’s industry cloud portfolio. Planon Real Estate Management for SAP S/4HANA leverages integration capabilities of SAP Business Technology Platform (SAP BTP) services, developed to integrate with SAP S/4HANA and SAP S/4HANA Cloud using SAP Integration Suite to deliver Planon’s real estate and facility management solutions to customers. Customers will be able to benefit from their real estate management data exchanged with ERP processes. This provides the opportunity to unleash the potential of real estate-related data, transforming it into real business value.
Planon Real Estate Management for SAP S/4HANA helps enable business leaders to efficiently:
Manage real property financials and regulatory changes
Implement green building practices and measure, act, and report on ESG
Optimise real estate portfolios and rapidly adapt to economic and market shifts
Manage remote work practices “We have always followed the highest standards of security governance and we are pleased with the outcome of the SAP certification process. Having achieved SAP Endorsed App status, our customers can be more confident they are investing in a solution that provides value-added functionality and a smooth
integration following SAP standards,” said Pierre Guelen, CEO and founder of Planon. “By leveraging the synergies of our integrated solutions, they will be empowered to better optimise their real estate and workplace operations, emphasising efficiency, cost savings, reduced energy consumption, lower CO2 emissions, and an enhanced user experience.” “This partnership between Planon and SAP activates a broad set of cloud ERP capabilities to help real estate portfolios become more sustainable while increasing access to consumption data, initiatives, and related investments,” said Jan Gilg, President and Chief Product Officer, Cloud ERP at SAP. “Our partnership approach includes strong product coinnovation and collaboration to create integrated scenarios where customers can benefit from premium certified integrations.” To enable companies to become intelligent
enterprises, SAP is expanding its vertical solutions with an ecosystem of industry cloud solutions. The solutions leverage SAP Business Technology Platform (SAP BTP), with advanced technologies, and are interoperable with SAP’s intelligent suite. Planon is co-innovating with SAP to create offerings that meet specific corporate and commercial real estate industry requirements to provide customers with tools to help achieve positive business outcomes. Learn more at SAP Store. SAP Endorsed Apps are premium certified by SAP with added security, in-depth testing and measurements against benchmark results. Endorsed apps are meant to deliver value with desired outcomes. Interested to learn more? Visit planonsoftware.com/uk/sap
https://planonsoftware.com 01273 823557 NOVEMBER 2023
TO ADVERTISE IN MONTH IN FM PLEASE CONTACT DANNY.GRANGE@KPMMEDIA.CO.UK OR CALL 01322 476811
MONTH IN FM
TORK OFFICE HYGIENE PACKAGE IMPROVES WORKPLACE SATISFACTION New from Essity is the Tork Office Hygiene Package™ designed to help businesses improve staff satisfaction in the workplace. The package incorporates smart hygiene solutions, a new air freshener and the Office Complaints Minimiser™ which allows facility managers to test their hygiene and cleaning knowledge against industry data. Gripes about toilets account for more than 45 per cent of office building complaints according to a recent Statista study. And a second survey carried out in 2022 revealed that 86 per cent of office employees regard cleanliness as the most important aspect of a good working environment, while 85 per cent believe the state of the washrooms reflects the cleanliness of the building overall. “If restrooms are run well and efficiently, cleaning teams have more time to clean the rest of the facility,” says Anna Königson Koopmans, Marketing Director Commercial for Essity’s professional hygiene business. “And our research shows that better cleaning quality leads to better employee workplace satisfaction.”
The Office Complaints Minimiser™ is a gamified digital challenge aimed at improving facility managers’ knowledge about hygiene and cleaning solutions in a bid to reduce complaints and save time. Also incorporated in the Tork Office Hygiene Package is Tork Vision Cleaning which is designed to take the guesswork out of the cleaning operation. Using real-time data from people-counters and connected dispensers, Tork Vision Cleaning indicates to facility managers and cleaning staff those situations where extra cleaning might be required and where
dispenser refilling is needed. This reduces the number of dispenser checks required by up to 91 per cent while also ensuring that all dispensers are kept topped up 99 per cent of the time. And helping to keep the office environment smelling fresh is the new Tork Constant Air Freshener, a propellant-free aircare system that neutralises odours continuously and evenly. The dispenser can be mounted at a reachable height for cleaners, unlike many systems that need to be placed high up on the wall in order to be effective. This means refills can be easily integrated into normal cleaning routines, while the product is third-party certified as easy to use for speedier refilling. “Facility managers are facing multiple challenges including supply chain issues, labour shortages, sustainability legislation and a high staff turnover,” said Anna Königson Koopmans. “Taking the pressure off them is important for us and we are always looking at how our products and services can deliver both a great user experience and drive more efficient cleaning.”
www.tork.co.uk/officehygiene email@example.com 01582 677570
RECYCLE ON-THE-GO WITH THE ENVIROBANK Leafield Environmental, the award-winning manufacturer and designer of recycling and litter bins have a wide range of recycling on-the-go bins including their popular Envirobank recycling bin range that has been part of many national recycling campaigns. The Envirobank recycling bins are used as high-volume recycling units designed to collect single or multiple recyclables in highly populated areas. The Envirobank range is available in four different unit sizes including:
surface to withstand all weather conditions. An optional A3 poster frame is available upon request. The standard unit colour black is made from 100% recycled material (subject to availability). Bespoke colours and personalisation of labels are available upon request. The new Envirobank 310-litre unit is the latest addition to the Envirobank collection and features a dual aperture to collect different recyclables in its two 155-litre wheeled bins.
140-litre unit https://leafieldrecycle.com/product-category/external-recycling-bins/ envirobank-recycling-bin/ 180-litre unit (split) https://leafieldrecycle.com/product/envirobank-split-180-recyclingbin/ 240-litre unit https://leafieldrecycle.com/product/envirobank-240-recycling-bin/ New 310-litre unit https://leafieldrecycle.com/product/envirobank-split-310-recyclingbin/ All the units are available to collect a variety of waste materials. The Envirobank recycling bins are clearly labelled with WRAP compliant coloured coded labels to avoid contamination. The units are extremely durable with an enhanced double wall structure and anti-fly dimpled
www.leafieldrecycle.com firstname.lastname@example.org 01225 816541 54
MONTH IN FM
RAINBOW RESTORATION WINS CONTRACT WITH YORKSHIRE WATER
Rainbow Restoration is thrilled to announce its latest success as it enters into a strategic partnership with Yorkshire Water. A major provider of water and wastewater services, Yorkshire Water serves over 5 million households and 140,000 businesses across Yorkshire and the Humber.
his three-year contract solidifies our commitment to excellence in property restoration services, particularly in the aftermath of flooding incidents, covering both clean and wastewater. Rainbow is required to be available 24-hours-per-day, 7-days-a-week, 365-days-peryear, providing vital services to those in need. Six of our local branches will be covering the Yorkshire Water area. This will enable us to provide timely services to Yorkshire Water's valued customers, minimising the impact of water-related incidents on their properties. Rainbow will deliver services consisting of removing water or wastewater, debris, washing down, disinfecting, de-odourising and drying out and will involve the cleaning & drying of carpets and flooring, furniture, fixtures, and fittings where appropriate. The recent contract award not only highlights Rainbow's growing influence within the utilities sector but also serves as a testament to our esteemed reputation for consistent dependability and reliability across all our endeavours. Key indicators of trust from Yorkshire Water came from both our exceptional commitment to service and our commitment to sustainability. By leveraging our franchise-based branch model, we have strategically situated branches across the region thereby minimising driving distances and reducing emissions. This effort is in alignment with our mission (https://www.rainbowrestoration.
co.uk/wp-content/uploads/1/2023/08/Our-visionPDF.pdf) and overarching goal to attain Net Zero emissions across our entire business operations. Julia Swain, Key Account Manager at Rainbow Restoration and key player in the contract win, said: "We are delighted that Yorkshire Water has chosen Rainbow Restoration to be its sole provider of property clean and restoration services. “Having entered a three-year contract in July this year, we have six of our 52 UK operational branches poised to deliver critical services to Yorkshire Water across its operational area and we are incredibly excited to see the positive impact that Rainbow Restoration will have on the water industry and
Yorkshire Water’s valued customers. “This collaboration reflects our dedication to support clients and their customers at their time of need.'' Yorkshire Water’s James Carr, echoed the excitement of this new partnership: “We are delighted to be working with Rainbow Restoration to deliver vital services to our customers in their time of need.” Together with Yorkshire Water, we are now providing efficient and effective solutions to communities in need. We are truly excited about the possibilities that lie ahead and the positive impact that we will create together.
01623 675100 NOVEMBER 2023
TO ADVERTISE IN MONTH IN FM PLEASE CONTACT DANNY.GRANGE@KPMMEDIA.CO.UK OR CALL 01322 476811
MONTH IN FM
SUNBELT RENTALS LAUNCHES NEW FLOOR CARE AND MAINTENANCE RENTAL EQUIPMENT OFFERING TO THE UK Sunbelt Rentals UK and Ireland is proud to announce the launch of their latest business unit, Flooring Solutions. This strategic move is designed to meet the needs of the Facilities Management (FM) and surface preparation industries, further strengthening their reputation as the leading provider of equipment rental solutions. With their unparalleled scale, scope and expertise, Sunbelt Rentals is now better equipped than ever to provide a tailored FM solution in a variety of sectors. Sunbelt Rentals have leveraged their expertise by carefully selecting the best equipment from leading floor care and surface preparation manufacturers, including Tennant, National Flooring Equipment and Husqvarna. By partnering with these industry specialists, Sunbelt Rentals ensure that their customers in the FM and surface preparation sectors
have access to the most innovative equipment and technology, with the flexibility required to scale and adapt their operations with confidence. Jonathan Newport – Managing Director of Specialist
Solutions at Sunbelt Rentals said: “We are delighted to provide our customers and partners with new opportunities to access the specialist products and solutions they need. To ensure they receive the most reliable and advanced solutions available, we have carefully selected industry-leading manufacturers. Plus, our extensive range of FM services are tailored to each project or business requirement, delivering a complete end-to-end solution.” With a hire fleet of over £1 billion, Sunbelt Rentals is dedicated to providing the FM industry with the highest levels of innovation, quality and safety, all of which are designed with the environment in mind. Find out more about Sunbelt Rentals floor care and maintenance solutions on their website: (www.sunbeltrentals.co.uk/to-rent/floor-care-andmaintenance/).
www.sunbeltrentals.co.uk/to-rent/floor-care-and-maintenance 0161 518 2816
ANDERS+KERN PARTNERS WITH UTELOGY TO BRING PROACTIVE MANAGEMENT AND MONITORING TO THE MODERN WORKPLACE Anders+Kern (A+K), a leading UK workplace technology distributor, is proud to announce a strategic partnership with Utelogy, a visionary provider of management, monitoring, automation, and analytics software for the connected workspace. This exciting collaboration signifies a major milestone in A+K's mission to deliver cuttingedge workplace technology solutions that cater to the evolving needs of businesses across the UK. Utelogy: Transforming Digital Workspaces with Intelligence Utelogy Corporation publishes an enterprisegrade software platform for managing, monitoring, controlling, and automating audio visual, unified communications, and IoT devices. This hardwareagnostic platform revolutionises productivity for end-users and enables advanced services for integrators and Managed Service Providers (MSP’s). With Utelogy, organisations can make data-driven decisions and empower their support teams to deliver world-class, enterprise-grade services with unparalleled efficiency.
Optimising AV and IT Resources with Utelogy The Utelogy platform provides modern workplaces, a host of benefits: Remote Management: Utelogy's platform empowers users with the ability to manage and control AV/UC systems from anywhere, streamlining support and enhancing system availability. Proactive Monitoring & Self-Healing: Through advanced monitoring, Utelogy detects potential issues before they escalate, and with its automation capabilities, it can self-correct many common problems, reducing downtime and enhancing the user experience. ROI: Utelogy is designed for straightforward
deployment, eliminating complex programming costs. This user-friendly approach accelerates adoption and delivers a superior return on investment by reducing the need for frequent technical interventions. Gain access to powerful analytics for data driven decisions. Sustainability & Energy Efficiency: Utelogy's advanced automations not only enhance system functionality but also intelligently manage energy consumption. By optimising equipment usage and turning off unused devices, the platform contributes to significant energy savings, reducing both operational costs and the environmental footprint. As a trusted distributor specialising in IoT and workspace software and hardware solutions, A+K has consistently delivered innovative technologies that optimise digital workspaces and drive business success. The partnership with Utelogy underscores A+K's dedication to offering top-tier solutions that align with the evolving needs of modern workplaces.
https://www.anders-kern.co.uk email@example.com 01638 510900 56
MONTH IN FM
THE ROLE OF A DRAINAGE PROVIDER: HOW METRO ROD SUPPORT FACILITY MANAGEMENT COMPANIES AND THEIR CUSTOMERS Drainage problems cause headaches for facility management providers and their customers alike. Bad smells from sewers, surface water flooding in car parks and facilities that are rendered out of use are disruptive, affect a company's reputation and lead to loss of earnings
odexo, one of the UK's leaders in facilities management service providers, is continually seeking to maximise the efficiency of its clients' premises and enhance the performance of their assets. It was seeking a drainage provider that could place its customers' priorities first and provide a one-stop shop service of support from a central location. In 2006, Metro Rod was appointed to provide a preventative drainage solution in a single region and over the last 17 years, the partnership has evolved. Metro Rod is now responsible for delivering a national portfolio of drainage services on behalf of Sodexo including drain solutions, pump station maintenance, plumbing and 24/7 emergency call out support. As part of the contract, Metro Rod also provides Sodexo with regular routine drain maintenance as a preventive measure on their sites, cleaning drains, emptying interceptors and many other services which minimise the likelihood of
disruption for its customers. James Wood, Senior Category Manager, at Sodexo UK & Ireland said: "From the start of our relationship, Metro Rod quickly became a preferred supplier of Sodexo. The team's reactive and planned maintenance work on-site is of a high quality. “Having drainage, plumbing, tankers and now
pumps provided by one company helps us manage the supplier relationship. If there's a problem, we only need to make one phone call to one person and everything is put into motion to address it." In partnership with Sodexo, Metro Rod has businesses of all shapes and sizes across the UK to overcome their drainage challenges, meeting on average over 90% of SLAs, with an excellent firsttime fix rate. James added: "The length and strength of our relationship speaks volumes about how we work together with Metro Rod, with the portfolio of services we take from them having increased by 20% over the past three years. We continue to be impressed by the service provided by Metro Rod in the delivery of a comprehensive, quality drainage and pump solution." For more information on Metro Rod's services for facilities managers, call us today on 0800 66 88 00 or visit www.metrorod.co.uk
www.metrorod.co.uk 0800 66 88 00 NOVEMBER 2023
TO ADVERTISE IN MONTH IN FM PLEASE CONTACT DANNY.GRANGE@KPMMEDIA.CO.UK OR CALL 01322 476811
MONTH IN FM
CCF SUPPORTS SUPPLY CHAIN COMPETENCE WITH ASFP PASSIVE FIRE EXPERIENCE
KNIGHTSBRIDGE REACHES NEW HIGHS WITH LED INDUSTRIAL LIGHTING
Leading insulation, drywall, and ceiling products distributor CCF, supported by ROCKWOOL and Promat, is providing a series of ASFP passive fire protection product training sessions for its customers at CCF branches across the UK. The Association for Specialist Fire Protection (ASFP) mobile classroom is scheduled to visit five CCF branches in Harmondsworth, South Ruislip, Cardiff, Exeter, and Southampton this autumn. With three sessions planned at each branch, CCF is aiming to bring this training opportunity to as many as 150 customers. ASFP is the UK’s leading trade association for the passive fire protection sector and its aim is to bring together passive fire protection manufacturers, contractors, and certification bodies to encourage, develop and give guidance on essential standards in passive fire protection. Dedicated training courses are a vital part of that work and hosting these events at branch level is an important way CCF is supporting its customers and driving up industry competence as required in the Building Safety Act. CCF is committed to the continuous development of its own in-house technical knowledge too and to date over 50 CCF colleagues have completed training with the ASFP. CCF has been named a finalist at the ASFP Awards 2023 in the ‘highest engagement of the year’ category. The winners will be announced on November 23rd.
The new Potentia LED high bay range from Knightsbridge – one of the UK’s leading manufacturers of wiring accessories and lighting – provides an ideal solution for industrial applications requiring versatility, flexibility, durability, control and performance. The high bays, which come in two sizes, incorporate tri-wattage and dual-CCT functions along with other innovative features to deliver long-life and powerful illumination. The high bays feature a selectable CCT switch, allowing users to adjust the colour temperature between 4000K and 5000K according to preference; and offer wattages of either 100W, 120W and 150W or 150W, 180W and 200W depending on model. Suitable for the toughest industrial environments, Potentia are rated to IK08, making them resilient in the face of impacts, and also IP65, ensuring resistance against dust and water ingress. This makes them well-suited for installations in challenging indoor or outdoor settings where protection against moisture and debris is crucial. Other accessories available include a 60o lens modifier, which reduces the beam angle from 90o to 60o – important for high-ceiling installations, a smaller beam angle is required – and surface mounting brackets which allow for flush mounting and so increase the number of applications for which Potentia is suited. With a five-year warranty and cutting-edge LED technology, Potentia is built to last, boasting an L90B10 rating of 50,000 hours, guaranteeing longevity and consistent performance.
www.mlaccessories.co.uk 01582 887760
WATERBLADE WINS SUSTAINABILITY AWARD AT THE HOTEL AND RESORT INNOVATION EXPO The panel of judges recognised the exceptional potential of the Waterblade to address the challenge of reducing water and energy usage, whilst maintaining a high level of performance. When fitted as a range of measures we are achieving 20% reduction in whole building water consumption, and 5% reduction in whole building energy consumption. For a measure that takes minutes to implement and has a Return on Investment measured in Months, it has to be worth considering! Waterblade has been fitted to 10,000+ hotel bathrooms in the last year, as well as 1,000’s of washroom basins. It is WRAS approved and UK manufactured in premises with ISO 9001 and ISO 14001. Contact us and we can discuss which Waterblade best suits your taps, and set you up with a sample to try for yourselves.
2N LAUNCHES THE 2N CLIP TO MEET THE GROWING DEMAND FOR IP ACCESS CONTROL IN EVERY TYPE OF HOME 2N, the global market leader in internet-enabled intercoms and access control systems, has launched a new IP answering unit, the 2N®, which is designed to meet the growing demand for IP technology in mid-range residential projects. The 4″ video device runs on the same powerful, reliable operating system as 2N’s premium IP products, and offers many of the same advantages, including top quality audio and video –which enhance home security. It also offers the same high standards in other areas too, including cybersecurity and sustainability, which are demanded by more and more users. On top of that, the 2N® Clip is the fastest answering unit on the market to install – it only takes three minutes – and it can be managed and configured remotely via the My2N Management Platform. The 2N® Clip has also been developed with a focus on the importance of aesthetics in access control. High-end functionality will always be the top priority for access control firms, but when technological capabilities come together with elegant design, as in the case of the 2N® Clip, access devices can genuinely enhance the status of the building in which they are installed. www.2N.com
FMJ.CO.UK FACILITIES MANAGEMENT JOURNAL
FM CAREERS - PEOPLE
BM FOCUSES ON TEAM DEVELOPMENT AND DIVERSITY IN NEWLY CREATED ROLE
Workplace catering company, BM, has appointed Dorrianne Casey to a newly created role focused on learning and development as well as equality, diversity and inclusion. Casey has taken on the role having been with BM since 2019 in an operational support capacity. Her tasks will include overseeing BM’s training calendar, course creation and workshop delivery, developing BM’s learning management system further, and measuring progress across key deliverables. She will also lead ED&I steering groups and offer support to wider focus groups across the business. As part of her role, she will establish the agenda for a focus group on disability in the workplace, and drive diversity education across the wider WSH parent group.
ARCUS FM APPOINTS TRANSFORMATION AND MOBILISATION DIRECTOR Strengthening its operational structure, Arcus FM has appointed John Donnison as its first Transformation and Mobilisation Director to provide industry-leading onboarding services. Continuing its rapid growth trajectory, Arcus has seen a number of largescale mobilisations over the last 12 months. Donnison has been with Arcus for over two years as Account Director and has led various projects to strengthen customer relations and satisfaction. With a background in transformation delivery and strategic development, he brings over 20 years of experience in leading and controlling large contract mobilisations, strengthening management across accounts, and offering exceptional customer service. As Transformation and Mobilisation Director, Donnison will be leading a new department that will offer enhanced mobilisations across customers’ estates and offering transformational support throughout their contracts.
ISS APPOINTS MD TO DRIVE TRANSFORMATION OF ITS KEY ACCOUNT NETWORK ISS UK & Ireland has appointed Martin Wilson as Managing Director of its Key Account Network (KAN). KAN provides a range of FM services, including cleaning, maintenance and technical services nationwide, via a team of 3,500 colleagues, to more than 4,000 client sites across the UK and Ireland. In his new role, Wilson will be instrumental in the delivery of the KAN transformation programme, which aims to strengthen the network’s product offering, attract new talent, and build its reputation within ISS UK&I. Wilson joined ISS in February 2023 to lead a review of KAN and help the business meet the new challenge of growth in a post-pandemic context.
OUR RECRUITMENT TEAM If you are looking to grow your facilities team across either engineering or soft services, then our FM recruitment team have a rapidly expanding network of job seekers available for temporary, permanent or contract vacancies. Marcus May | Business Manager Marcus started his career in recruitment in 1997 and has since built up a vast amount of experience within the built environment. Largely focused on the Public Sector, he has successfully recruited for roles within the NHS, Healthcare, and Higher Education, across Estates Directorates, FM (Hard & Soft) and Capital Works. He has supplied staff on a Retained, Permanent, Fixed Term Contract, Freelance and Interim basis at all tiers up to Executive Director Level.
Henry Milton | Delivery Consultant Henry focuses on the recruitment of senior roles in Facilities Management. Working closely with both service providers and direct clients, he has a knack for identifying the right fit for senior FM and technical services positions. Whether you're in need of temporary or permanent staff, Henry's expertise ensures a seamless process to support team growth. T: 07879715700 | E: firstname.lastname@example.org
T: 07951786236 | E: email@example.com
Lizzie Lee | Senior Recruitment Consultant
Harvey Golding | Delivery Consultant
Lizzie started her recruitment career six years ago,
Harvey work’s with all trades staff and engineers
always working within the FM industry. Focusing
in the commercial sector, including air
on soft service vacancies which include back
conditioning, fabric, mechanical, electrical, gas
office, front of house and all administration
and lead engineers.
positions, as well as coordinators, facilities
Harvey can help you keep your building running
assistance, cleaners, catering, caretakers, and
across one floor or an entire estate with either
porters. Lizzie works on Temporary, Contract and
temporary or permanent roles.
T: 07944267226 | E: firstname.lastname@example.org
T: 07538 636 965 | E: email@example.com
firstname.lastname@example.org NOVEMBER 2023
FACILITIES MANAGEMENT JOURNAL
FM CAREERS - RECRUITMENT
EVERYDAY BENEFITS Employee benefits are a key differentiator in current labour market says Emma Thornton of facilities management recruitment experts 300 North
ver 70 per cent of employees consider the employee benefits on offer when applying for or considering leaving a job. A good benefits package can make an employee feel supported in their role and can provide transformational development opportunities. It is also a vital part of talent attraction. This is even more essential in the current climate where people do not feel like their salaries are stretching as far. It also means that benefits packages are increasingly becoming a differentiator in a hiring market where there are still more vacancies than qualified candidates, putting pressure on businesses to improve their offering. Companies in the FM space who have engaged with this new market outlook have begun to produce enhanced benefits packages, “benchmarked to external best practices and market insights, and supported throughout their development by external partners” including charities with specific knowledge on each part of the offering in order to provide the most relevant and assistive benefits possible according to Mark Goodyer, HR Director at Sodexo.
deals with popular large brands can be among the most attractive and most expensive benefits. These offers can run alongside cashback benefits which can be used with many major retailers. Employers can also get more specific, offering salary sacrifice schemes for a range of goods and services, including cycle to work and EV schemes, and health insurance, many of which can also fit into CSR goals. Businesses may also consider offering subsidised food and drinks to bring people back to the office, which can be particularly valuable for offices in more isolated areas. Outside of this, companies can offer financial education benefits to help employees with money management skills. Goodyer notes that Sodexo provides “all 34,000 colleagues access to an online platform hosted by Salary Finance providing free
FINANCIAL HELP The most popular benefits at the moment are financial, as many see an increase in bills due to the cost of living crisis. Employee discount platforms and
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DEVELOPMENT OPPORTUNITIES Training and development programmes can be extremely popular for both employers and employees. Companies can upskill their existing workforce through in-house training that provides refreshment for employees whose roles may have slowed down. It allows people a chance to understand their role and the company better, bringing significant benefits to both parties. Mark Whittaker, General Manager at Thomson FM and Chair of the IWFM notes that “it has become clear since the end of the Coronavirus lockdowns that companies have been putting a great deal of thought and effort into both retaining and attracting talent
into their organisations. “It is not just about salary packages either; flexible work patterns and career development are regularly signposted as being just as important to the workforce. It has become increasingly obvious that an organisation’s offering on training, professional qualifications, mentoring and career development is essential for attracting new entrants into the profession and IWFM continue to be ideally placed to support them with this.” FLEXIBLE ARRANGEMENTS Research from Business Name Generator found work-from-home flexibility is the most highly-valued benefit, with 94 per cent of those who receive this benefit saying it increases their work productivity and happiness, however, just over a quarter of officebased workers currently receive this (27 per cent). Flexibility has become an expectation. It is expected for both where people want to work and when they want to work. Companies who do not offer flexible working are appealing to a decreasing section of the market and of those, many are struggling to hire and retain staff. Part of this is offering a space for people to come together and collaborate, especially if they work in remote teams, and potentially making use of coworking spaces in city centres. Companies who provide a flexible approach to work-spaces and fulfilment of contracted hours often also provide desirable policies on leave, including annual leave, leave for illness, parental leave and much more. Different kinds of leave work best for different employees, and building a positive culture around taking leave is crucial for people to feel comfortable declaring their needs. Creating an organisational culture that works well for all employees, that empowers them and encourages their productivity, is diverse and inclusive, with a transparent CSR agenda will be the best way to attract and retain talent. Having a benefits package that the company can be proud of and advertise throughout their hiring process is crucial to recruitment and candidate attraction and could be the difference between hiring or missing out on the top talent.
FACILITIES MANAGEMENT JOURNAL
FM CAREERS - TRAINING
EXPLORATION Piers Zangana explores the development of new, virtual ways of learning and training which are being applied in the hospitality and facilities management space
kills and people shortages are the most significant challenges the facilities management and catering sectors are experiencing. In the foodservice and accommodation sector, 118,000 vacancies were recorded between June and August 2023, compared to 92,000 during the same three-month period in 2019. The way people approach the world of work has also changed, along with the expectations of new generations entering the workplace, and employers will have to adapt and evolve to meet these expectations or risk being left behind. For example, 30 per cent of 14-21-year-olds expect training opportunities for skills development in the workplace, according to a white paper commissioned by Umbrella Training, and future generations will also have their own ideas of how training should be delivered and what works for them. Gen Z are the UK’s biggest content consumers, engaging with over 10 hours of online content a day, affecting the ways in which they are familiar with gathering and retaining information. VIRTUAL LEARNING New, virtual ways of learning and training are also potentially more efficient. Virtual reality (VR), for example, can help businesses upskill their employees faster. Training and apprenticeships provider Umbrella Training, in partnership with Metaverse Learning, recently launched the hospitality industry’s first virtual learning chef courses, targeting Gen Z and A entry-level commis chefs. “With these programmes, we are addressing a new generation of learners who are more digitally, distanced and flexible learning focused,” says Adele Oxberry, founder, and CEO of Umbrella. “Their new learning characteristics are more diverse than we have managed before and this is the generation we need to attract into our industry. As educators, we’ve known things must change in order to service our sector in the future. But we must
transform ourselves in an effective, sustainable, and scalable way.” The VR kitchen courses launched so far cover introduction to the kitchen environment, covering everything commis chefs would be expected to know in a real environment. During development, Umbrella engaged chef professionals and educators to ensure the technical kitchen expertise was accurately and appropriately represented, and all scenarios have been aligned against Level 2 Commis Chef development, whether against the apprenticeship standard, NVQ or diploma. VR training presents an additional tool to the L&D arsenal, enhancing existing approaches and platforms, particularly appealing to visual and kinetic learners by engaging them with 3D virtual environments. “Our sector is incredibly hands on and this technology helps to bridge the gap between the needs of our sector and the way in which young people are keen to learn,” says Pete Redman, Chef
Director at BM Caterers. “What a lot of our trainees love about the kitchen is the hands-on, on-the-job learning,” agrees Liam Hatcher, Head of People and Development at Ch&Co. “Sitting in a classroom environment doesn’t necessarily appeal to all of them, so using VR as part of our training programmes could really help us engage those learners in a new way that works better for them, complementing our existing training schemes.” The software also analyses the learner’s performance step-by-step, spotting any mistakes or areas where they may need further support that might be missed in a busy educational environment, giving the user real-time feedback, and allowing them to proceed at their own pace, including revisiting topics and stages until they’re comfortable. FM & VR It’s an approach being explored in the FM space, not just for the purposes of client sales and operations, but also for training. “VR allows us to get as close to visualising an environment as possible without the associated risks, which presents so many opportunities in the training space, allowing our trainees to test their skills in realistic and immersive renderings. We can even recreate emergency situations. Effective training in our sector is essential, not only in saving us time and money, but for safety reasons, too,” said Guy Goodall, Director, Polyteck. While the possibilities of VR in the hospitality and facilities management space could result in significant cost savings, what is key is its potential to provide an engaging and safe new way of training teams. This in turn could aid retention and, critically, attract future generations to sectors that have been struggling to engage future generations and ensure they compete with the likes of tech firms by speaking to young people in their language. Although it’s too early for any concrete data, the success of this style of approach was seen at Umbrella’s giant technology dome at the Skills London 2022 exhibition, the UK’s largest jobs and careers event for 14-21-year-olds. Umbrella’s space featured Augmented Reality experiences of partner businesses and video games to give an insight into hospitality. Those who visited the stand voted it the most creative and engaging at the event and hospitality was described as “trendy” by everyone who participated in the activities – a perception the hospitality and facilities management sectors desperately need – and the organisation’s partnership with Metaverse Learning and development of VR training courses was the natural next step on this journey. Oxberry adds: “For us, as educators and learning and development professionals, I think we need to realise that it is no longer exciting and different to give them videos, 3D models and explorable VR content in our teaching or training. It’s expected.” NOVEMBER 2023
FACILITIES MANAGEMENT JOURNAL
FM CAREERS - NEWS
Rise in Living Wage for Britain’s low paid workers
Almost half of workers would turn down a job with lack of flexible working
The Living Wage Foundation’s real Living Wage rates has risen to £12 an hour across the UK (£1.10 increase), and £13.15 an hour in London (£1.20 increase). Unlike the Government minimum wage (‘National Living Wage’ for over 23s – £10.42) the real Living Wage is the only wage rate independently calculated based on rising living costs and applies to everyone over 18.
There are 3.5 million jobs (12.2 per cent of employee jobs, or one in eight jobs) paid less than the real Living Wage. According to Living Wage Foundation projections, the scale of low pay is predicted to increase to 4.3 million (15.7 per cent of jobs) in 2023. In the past two years record numbers of employers have signed up to pay the real Living Wage, including to their third-party contractors like cleaners and security guards, with one in nine employees now working for an accredited Living Wage Employer.
OCS launches OCSi Academy OCS Group has invited employees from across its business to become part of its newly created OCSi Academy which is designed to help develop vital data skills and support career progression. The training will be delivered by Multiverse, a tech company focused on high-quality education and training through applied learning. In an initial trial, 15 OCS colleagues will enrol on a 15-month data apprenticeship, with plans to expand this next year. This investment by OCS into these apprenticeships aims to improve datadriven decision-making and efficiency across the business, supporting clients and employees to deliver better outcomes. It comes as research within the company found that most employees whose role requires some data analysis spend a considerable amount of time each week wrangling data. Ninety-one per cent of respondents said they wanted to improve their data skills.
A lack of flexible working options is driving almost half of UK workers to reject jobs at a time when employers are increasingly concerned about talent attraction and retention, according to new research by recruitment firm Robert Half. The firm’s 2024 Salary Guide - which analyses and reports on market salaries, hiring trends, and skills requirements across the UK - revealed that while pay remains a key driver of job moves – with 63 per cent of workers citing salary as a reason to reject an offer – flexible working and development opportunities are also significant motivators. Almost half (47 per cent) of the workforce would reject a new job if the company didn’t offer flexible working. A further 43 per cent would do so if career development opportunities weren’t suitable. The report also revealed that 75 per cent of employers are very or somewhat concerned about staff attraction and retention, with
almost a third (29 per cent) of workers indicating that they are apprehensive about the impact of heavy and increased workloads on peer retention. Kris Harris, Regional Director – UK Technology Solutions, at Robert Half, commented: “With such a significant proportion of the UK’s employers concerned about their ability to recruit and retain talent, what candidates want needs to take precedence over what employers would prefer to some degree at least. Inflated salaries aren’t feasible long term – indeed the study also showed that 22 per cent of businesses don’t plan to offer pay increases – but flexible working is. Although the recruitment market is slowing, with the labour market data from the Office for National Statistics showing sustained falls in jobs over recent months, skills shortages still remain. In this environment, candidates continue to be able to command more, and right now that includes flexibility.”
Government tells councils to cease any fourday working week trials ‘immediately’ The Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC) has informed councils to stop any four-day week trials “immediately” and rule out adopting the practice in future, to ensure taxpayers’ money is well spent. The guidance sets out the government’s position that “removing 20 per cent of a local authority’s potential capacity does not offer value for money for residents”. It makes clear that value for money for taxpayers is paramount and no further focus should be given by councils on this issue. Councils which are undertaking four-day working week activities should cease immediately and others should not seek to pursue in any format. Value for local taxpayers is paramount and no further focus should be given by local authorities on this matter. The department is also exploring other measures to ensure that the sector is clear that this working practice should not be pursued.” The Government says it “continues to support an individual’s right to request flexible working, which allows individual employees to apply for changes to the hours, timing, or location of work, which is clearly different to a blanket four-day working week on a full salary, across the whole organisation”.
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