What is your day as a Facility Manager like? If you are typical, it involves a load of work involving demanding jobs on critical timelines mixed with the mundane tasks. One minute the office is calling that the thermostat is broken and it is too cold. In the middle of checking to see if it is the thermostat or the HVAC, you get a call that a security alarm is going off and it is that sensor you've been meaning to fix. On your way to deal with the sensor and shut off the alarm with your staff, you get a call that lights are out in the garage. All the while you are running through the list in the back of your head you REALLY wanted to get done today. Some of them have been waiting for awhile, but who else can you get to do it? Oh, and you have that order sitting on your desk about doing a fire risk assessment so you are in compliance with fire safety requirements. Have to definitely get to that!
It obvious a Facility Manager must wear many hats. Your skills, expertise, and experience are spread across numerous duties, possibly many facilities, and your time to get everything done is limited. The thing is, if you checked with your business owner, they would say the same things about their job! The way they deal with it is to hire people, internally and externally, to deal with these issues. For long term jobs where people need deep knowledge of their work environment, like a Facility Manager, they hire internally. But for specialty jobs that are complex but short in duration, they hire subcontractors to make sure it gets done and is done correctly.
As a Facility Manager you are well aware of the environmental, health and safety issues that can develop due to maintenance issues with life safety and fire equipment, hazardous materials handling, and production processes in your facility.
It isn't always easy to make the decision to work with a contractor. Some Facility Managers see it as admitting they couldn't get something done or exposing something they forgot to do. No one knows your facility as well as you, so how can any one else help manage your fire protection needs? A few may be worried about contractors looking over their facility and pointing out MORE that needs to be done, costing them money that wasn't budgeted. Even worse, they worry it may make them look bad.
Facility Managers know, however, the value of having the right person do a job. When they need something fixed, they want it done right and quickly so they can move on to the next thing. County-Fire Protection offers 24-7 service availibilty. In matters dealing with life, safety, and health they also know they have a responsibility to everyone at the facility, and themselves, to have the correct, well maintained equipment on hand along with up-to-date procedures and training. County Fire Protection can provide you with the wide-ranging services you need is the answer to getting the job done correctly and quickly.
The contractor absolutely can't do it without you, the Facility Manager, leading them through the facility, familiarizing them with issues, and working with them on solutions. So, it is a good idea to spend the time, money, and effort to hire a contractor - but to make it a successful effort, they need YOU.
One of the important areas that Facility Managers are addressing is fire risk assessment services. The adoption of Regulatory Reform Order 2005 (Fire Safety) means any business with more than five employees must complete a written fire risk assessment. As a Facility Manager you know that this is critical as it has replaced the fire safety inspections and certificates from the fire department and shifts the onus on the business to comply and certify. That means the Facility Manager is responsible. In one respect, this is good, because your attention to detail when it comes to safety means you will get it done. It also means you have to get it done - all of it.
We covered that no contractor can succeed in their jobs without your knowledge and input relative to your facility. That means when you do select a contractor, you want a contractor that provides a full range of services to address all your needs. Why? Because you don't want to have to familiarize and manage several contractors to do similar jobs - that isn't efficient and costs you time. If you want to discuss such services, call a full-service contractor in your area like County Fire Protection to see what they can do for you. The keys for you, as a Facility Manager, are to get your life, safety and health compliance done right, done now, and to protect your people and facility.