A Building Manager is responsible for the management of services and processes that support the core business of an organization. A person in this position manages, plans, and directs the day to day facility operations of companies, schools, nonprofit organizations, or any commercial business. Big institutions need the expertise of a facilities manager to ensure that the establishment runs without problems. In addition to people, they manage buildings and grounds as well. They formulate policies, manage daily operations and maintain smooth operations at an establishment. The actual duties usually vary by degree of responsibility and authority, but facilities manager generally focus on using excellent business practice to improve efficiency, by reducing operating costs while increasing productivity.
Most employers, specifically big establishments, look for individuals who have at least a four year college degree in Building Management, Administrative Support, or related courses such as, a major in business, finance, and real estate. Some employers don’t mind college majors as long as the curriculum includes courses in office technology, accounting, human resources and business law, and mathematics.
Duties and Responsibilities
A Facilities Manager must coordinate and work in tandem with the management of a firm or establishment on issues related to effective office management. They must also coordinate with I.T staff for technological needs. The Facility Manager ensures the safety of the building or establishment from fire, flood and other hazards and makes sure that all the equipment and other facilities are working properly. They also assess current conditions of electrical, plumbing, air conditioning, and other essential utilities and equipment.
They initiate an active campaign on the safety ofn the building and create a schedule of regular evaluations of the facilities. They are tasked with managing in-house maintenance and engineering staff, recruiting facilities service staff, and training them to ensure competent work output. The manager participates in preparing the budget, so that the facilities maintenance team will have adequate funds for its operation. He also evaluates the work quality of his staff and subordinates and makes sure that high safety standards are being followed and maintained. On top of this, the facilities manager should use performance management techniques to monitor and demonstrate achievement of agreed service levels.
Individuals interested in becoming a building manager should have an ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with people with varying skills and competencies. They should be detail oriented, analytical decision-makers, and also have good communication skills. They must be versatile and can multi-task to be able to do several tasks at the same time, quickly analyze and resolve specific problems, and cope with deadlines.
They must be a team player to be able to manage the entire facilities service staff. Advanced knowledge and understanding of building operations and support, proficiency in accounting and financial analysis is also an advantage. Some big establishments require certification or look for Certified Facility Manager. Individuals who are starting their careers can earn the Facility Management Professional credential, a springboard for eventually attaining the CFM (Certified Facility Management) certification.
Salary and Compensation
Companies have begun hiring more college-educated managers so the salaries of a full-time Building Managers have trended upward over the last several years. Those who have earned certifications or Certified Facility Managers have salaries higher than those who have not attained it.*
*According to the BLS, http://www.bls.gov/oco/