Human Resources, Maintenance and Operations, Sustainability/Business Continuity

IFMA Report Forecasts ‘Significant Shifts’ for FM Industry

The International Facility Management Association (IFMA) has released “Experts’ Assessment, Vol. 2: Future working environments and support functions toward 2030.”

The in-depth analysis covers what the facility management (FM) industry has learned since IFMA’s first Experts’ Assessment study was conducted in 2020, as well as how changing organizational priorities are shaping the future of the built environment and FM roles. Assessing insights provided by subject matter experts (SMEs) from around the world, the report aims to build industry resilience and help FM professionals prepare for significant shifts in how organizations operate.

From July to September in 2022, IFMA used real-time Delphi methodology to survey 222 SMEs who are readying their organizations and clients for new ways of working toward 2030. Five thematic sections synthesize SMEs’ perspectives on:

  • Facilities in demand toward 2030
  • Technology, work, and workforce development
  • Workplace management and strategy
  • Environmental, social, and corporate governance (ESG)
  • Facility management in 2030

IFMA’s 2020 report, “The Experts’ Assessment: The Workplace Post-COVID-19,” was the result of discussions among 248 global SMEs about the pandemic’s long-term impacts on the workplace and how FMs would adapt to a new world of work. Volume 2 revisits the challenges, projected effects, and recommended actions outlined two years ago. It examines choices made and lessons learned, identifying the implications for future work environments and support functions.

“The subject matter experts who contributed to this study are industry leaders whose foresight and well-considered actions have sustained their organizations through unprecedented change,” said IFMA President and CEO Don Gilpin. “Understanding the decisions they’ve made to adapt and prepare their organizations for the future will help any FM gain clarity in forming their own strategies, as well as a solid base from which to gain buy-in on projects and policies that will mean the difference between sink or swim.”

The study identifies the most crucial focus areas for resilience, both for FM professionals and their organizations. It shows that facility managers face several new realities requiring new mindsets, business models, and technologies. With remote and hybrid work becoming the norm and organizations still struggling to entice workers back to the office, it is increasingly important for FMs to create more experiential spaces.

“FMs are no strangers to change,” said Laurie A. Gilmer, P.E., CFM, FMP, SFP, LEED AP, chair of IFMA’s Global Board of Directors. “We are attentive to varying conditions in our facilities and the business world. We plan for possible scenarios so that we are ready to pivot for the safety and productivity of our people and the endurance of our organizations. To be fully prepared, we must be fully informed.”

Sponsored by HOK, JLL, Planon and Savills, IFMA’s “Experts’ Assessment, Vol. 2″ report may be accessed free of charge here.

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