No matter when your fiscal year ends, the calendar year is an opportunity to take stock of current operations and look for ways to make the New Year better for your company. As a facility manager, that philosophy is a bit more complex when your responsibilities are so diverse. But the New Year is a time for thinking positive, and making improvements by adopting a strategic New Year’s resolution—or resolutions.
I will allocate time for strategic planning.
When you’re trying to stay on top of daily operations, setting aside time to plan for the future can seem like an unnecessary chore. However, establishing goals (i.e. cost reduction goals, health and safety goals, etc.), and collecting and analyzing data to meet those goals is an essential part of business planning. Once you’ve taken the time to make a plan, clearly assign responsibilities and regularly follow-up with staff to ensure progress is being made.
I will do a full audit.
If your organization is built on the premise of “this is who we’ve always used and this is how we’ve always done it,” it may be time for a change. That doesn’t mean you should clean house abruptly, but it does mean a full review of costs and processes. Your goal is to break down those processes for review, then make them more efficient and cost-effective for the company. To see continual improvements, schedule partial audits (such as departmental or specific process audits) on a regular basis (i.e. annually, bi-annually, quarterly, etc.)
I will stay on top of preventative maintenance.
Preventative maintenance always seems to be a matter of debate, especially when you are trying to meet shipping schedules and production goals. While it may not always be the most popular choice, a successful facility manager has to make preventative maintenance a priority to keep your machines and facility in excellent condition—and communicate that priority to your department managers. Regular preventative maintenance can extend the life of your equipment, minimize breakdown costs and reduce productivity interruptions.
I will analyze the cost of hiring vs. outsourcing.
As a manager, improving the bottom line of your business is a process that continually evolves. Inevitably, to improve that bottom line, you’ll need to ask yourself key questions: which vendor is most cost-effective? Should we outsource or perform this service in house? Let’s use facility cleaning as an example. What are the costs of hiring employees for your cleaning and maintenance vs. outsourcing? Do you have a need for services outside of the skill sets of your employees (maintenance, construction, etc.)? Is it cost prohibitive to buy supplies for cleaning and maintenance vs. an outside company with the supplies? Do you only need cleaning and maintenance services on a part-time basis? Research and gather information from your local cleaning company when deciding whether to outsource. The results of your evaluation can help you decide whether outsourcing is a better option for your company.
I will keep my business clean for peak efficiency.
There are two parts to this resolution: organization and cleanliness. An organized company can effectively manage their assets, fulfill production schedules promptly, and meet crucial shipping deadlines. There are numerous ways to improve your company’s organizational skills: with new software, procedures, shelving, etc.
As for keeping your business clean, look for ways to improve your building maintenance and cleanliness. Clearly communicate the roles and responsibilities of your staff, such as each department’s role in keeping their workspace clean, how communication is handled with your commercial cleaning service, and the amount of time each department should allow for cleaning. If you have any building maintenance needs, such as maintaining your parking lot or exterior, consider hiring a commercial cleaning service so you can control those costs.