Streamlining Best Practices Across Facility Management
Every business can realize significant cost savings by implementing streamlined, automated processes in its daily operations.
Phil Wales, CEO, eBusiness Strategies (Spring 2011)
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Case Study No. 2
A company wanted to determine whether its janitorial services should work overnight as they always had, so as not to interfere with building occupants during business hours. Its analysis revealed a surprising discovery. Not only was it paying a premium for the service itself and the 10 p.m.-6 a.m. workers, it was unaware of the real costs of overnight HVAC and lighting.
After comparing costs, the company determined that moving cleaning to daylight hours would deliver significant savings with minimal disruptions, such as closing restrooms during certain hours. By monitoring impacts on facilities, RE/FM managers showed significant hard-dollar benefits from both the janitorial contract and energy consumption.
Case Study No. 3
Of these three case studies, the electronics manufacturer hit the most memorable home run. Without cutting corners, it assessed all of its business processes, implemented supporting technology, and looked beyond how the processes affected their internal operations to how it could make RE/FM more efficient. It examined how it touched other service organizations, such as HR, technology, and procurement, and how it impacted users in the field. Over time, it implemented integrated, cross-functional processes, which provided exponential benefits beyond only RE/FM, and has continued bettering these inter-service improvements by constantly monitoring, tweaking, and refining its approach.
The results? The company CFO said the implemented technology paid for all the work, including consulting and technology implementation, plus its own internal costs for change, by getting the investment back every quarter into perpetuity. Four times a year, its re-engineering program for process and technology expenditures pays for itself. For a company of any size, the savings can be impressive. For larger companies, the savings can run into the tens or even hundreds of millions of dollars.
Taking the First Step
C-level executives and facility managers must first understand the motivation for the services the company offers to initiate streamlining and automation. That is, what value does the company receive from these services? Second, streamline services so they optimize value not only within the specific service, but across the entire lifecycle. Third, look at what the technology can do once the processes are optimized and standardized, and the logical implementation strategy to support it.
Once the company understands the new service model, it becomes relatively easy to define what the system should do to make those processes work efficiently. From there, product selection and implementation against standard business requirements will emerge. Almost seamlessly, on a technology-enabled basis, companies can write a new chapter in driving costs down and driving efficiencies up.