More facilities managers moving into the C suite

The role of facility managers is expanding, enabling some to move from middle management closer to the C suite -- 11 percent are senior executives working alongside the CEO, CFO and COO.

[caption id="attachment_68711" align="alignright" width="200"] Robert Ule, president of the Redwood Empire Chapter of the International Facility Management Association based in Santa Rosa encompassing the North Bay[/caption]

“The definition, importance and scope of what we do has changed dramatically,” said Robert Ule, president of the Redwood Empire Chapter of IFMA (International Facility Management Association, based in Sonoma County.

“Companies that value professional facilities management want us to participate in decision-making and no longer see us as just running a maintenance crew. The perception of what we do is shifting from handling a cost center to having a strategic asset management and financial role.”

The 2011 IFMA Salary and Demographics Research Report showed that 54 percent of 4,353 respondents to the global survey said their responsibilities have definitely increased over the past two years. Thirty-eight percent said they are responsible for 20 or more buildings and 33 percent reported that they manage buildings with over one million square feet of space.

Being a facility manager is no longer reserved for men. Today some 33 percent are women, according to this survey.

According to Mr. Ule, the issues faced in the North Bay are unique with emphasis on sustainability and reducing the carbon footprint. 

“We must find new ways to cut or eliminate wasteful activities that produce bottom line savings while meeting environmental objectives.”

He said, “better is often cheaper in the long term, not more expensive.”

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