Facilities managers are in charge of the services and operations that support a company’s principal business.
You will ensure that best practices for optimal efficiency are followed and that the best working environment for its employees and operations is attained.
This is a complicated field with a range of activities that vary based on the structure and size of the organisation. You’ll be involved in both strategic planning and day-to-day operations, particularly concerning buildings and premises.
Throughout your apprenticeship, you may help:
- be in charge of refurbishment, renovations and office moves
- make sure the building is maintained and meets health and safety standards
- advise on energy efficiency
- manage cleaning, waste disposal, catering, parking and security
- manage budgets and accounts
- negotiate with contractors and suppliers
- manage office systems like IT and equipment.
- Apprentice facilities managers salaries range from £20,000 to £27,000.
- As an experienced facilities manager you can expect to earn in the region of £30,000 to £48,000.
- Senior managers can earn in excess of £60,000, and at operations director level possibly up to £85,000.
You’ll generally work 38 to 40 hours per week, but longer hours may be required on occasion to meet project deadlines or to cover emergencies.
Some facilities management roles require shift work in order to cover 24-hour operations.
You could work in an office, at a sports arena or at a conference centre.
Qualifications you can achieve as an apprentice facilities manager include:
- Level 3 Facilities Management Supervisor – Entry requirements for this level include 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English and maths, for an advanced apprenticeship. This qualification will take 18 months to complete.
- Level 4 Facilities Manager – Entry requirements for this level include 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) and A levels, or equivalent, for a higher or degree apprenticeship. This qualification will take 24 months to complete.
- Level 6 Senior and Head of Facilities Management – Entry requirements for this level include 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) and A levels, or equivalent, for a higher or degree apprenticeship. This qualification will take 42 months to complete.
On a facilities manager apprenticeship, you’ll learn:
- customer service skills
- business management skills
- administration skills
- to be thorough and pay attention to detail
- knowledge of economics and accounting
- patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
- the ability to accept criticism and work well under pressure
- the ability to work well with others
- to be able to use a computer and the main software packages competently.
Facilities managers may be found in any organisation, including government, commercial, and non-profit organisations.
The assortment of job names reflects the task’s diversity. For example, you may be known as an operations manager, estates manager, technical services manager, or asset or property manager.
In bigger organisations, a facilities manager with a strategic view of various activities and supporting services is more likely to be needed.
Typical employers include:
- business consultancies
- facilities management providers
- industrial facilities and factories
- large public buildings, including museums and libraries
- local councils
- scientific laboratories
- shops and business parks
- specialist facilities management consultancies
You must engage in continuous professional development (CPD), which usually consists of short external courses and in-house training. Common training themes include health and safety, legislation and regulation, and practical and business skills training.
If you have an undergraduate or postgraduate degree recognised by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, you may become a chartered surveyor in the RICS Facilities Management (FM) faculty (RICS). You must pass the Assessment of Professional Competence (APC), a two-year structured training programme.
Membership in the IWFM and other related professional organisations, such as the CIOB (The Chartered Institute of Building) and the CIBSE – Chartered Institution of Building Services Engineers (CIBSE), may help with networking, training, and identifying CPD opportunities.
You’ll probably start as an assistant manager, focused on a specific task like cleaning, catering, or maintenance. You may move to department manager and general management, where you would be in charge of all operations.
There may be local, regional, and sector management jobs to fill before achieving the director level.
If you work for a small business, your growth may depend on moving to a larger company with more managerial chances. You could also specialise in consulting and start your own business.
Facilities managers are also positioned to take on additional general management roles within their organisations or across sectors.
It is possible to specialise in consulting and eventually create your own consultancy.