Debate: FM the catalyst for future building projects? (Soft Landings)
The 2013 FM Show debate was opened by the CEO of the BIFM, Gareth Tancred. He commenced by reminding the audience of the two main current initiatives; soft landings and Building Information Modelling (BIM), which offer opportunities for those in facilities management to feedback into the construction supply chain. Chaired by Tancred, with panel members; Richard Saxon (BIM Ambassador), Emma Bailey (Agents4RM), Martin Read (FM World) and James Warne (Boom Collective), overall it was a debate that saw the panellists having a great deal of common ground.
With Facilities Managers (FM’s) having a number of different skill sets, and typically coming from many different backgrounds, Emma Bailey’s view was at present, not all FM’s would have all the skills to drive significant building design changes against the established architects and constructors. It was also Bailey’s view that this added responsibility would no doubt cause an element of stress to those less experienced FM’s, and may cause confusion to other project team members to what the FM’s role actually is.
However, she pointed out this may appear negative, but could, in the main, be easily resolved by guidance, training and a good Project Manager who ensures equal input is provided by all, and who recognises the strength, weakness and uncertainty of those around the table.
The final question “Can FM lead and shape the design of future building projects?”. Though the panel agreed that the FM has a role to play, and can help shape future building designs, the panel did not all agree that it would be the FM’s leading the project; well for now.