Tomorrow’s workplace: a look into the future

From emergency and disaster preparedness to the rise of sustainable building design, today’s facility manager must adapt to current trends and prepare for future problems. The top trends were discussed at IFMA’s forecasting workshop in Houston.

09/12/2007


For facility management professionals, the workplace of tomorrow is the challenge of today. From emergency and disaster preparedness to the rise of sustainable building design, today’s facility manager must adapt to current trends and prepare for future problems. To help meet this two-tiered challenge, industry professionals from around the world met in Houston earlier this year for the International Facility Management Association’s (IFMA) forecasting workshop. The result was a peek into the future, as eight trends emerged that promise to shape building design and facility operations throughout the 21st century.
The top trends of 2007 that will most impact the built environment of the future are: linking facility management to strategy, emergency preparedness, change management, sustainability, emerging technology, globalization, broadening diversity in the workforce and aging buildings. The trends were identified by forecasting workshop panelists representing industries such as corporate real estate, government policy, energy, security and technology. While many of these trends are not new, the role they play has become more prominent.
“It’s important that industry leaders get together to identify trends and look at where the profession is headed over the next several years and beyond,” said David J. Brady, IFMA president and CEO. “This strategic exercise puts us in a better position to prepare IFMA members for the challenges that lie ahead and equip them with the skill sets and resources they need to be effective stewards of organizational assets.”
Linking the role an organization’s facilities play to its overall business objectives always has been paramount. For facility managers, the first trend highlights the importance of developing a clear understanding of their organization’s long-term business strategy %%MDASSML%% not just focusing on short-term problem solving.
Emergency preparedness, the second trend, has always been an element of facility management, though it has taken on a more visible role in recent years. Disaster planning and recovery have come to the forefront as dramatic emergency situations such as the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks and Hurricane Katrina have occurred during the past decade. Today’s facility professional must embrace the idea that emergency preparedness covers much more than emergency planning. They must strive to develop a concrete plan that minimizes the disruption of business and expedites the recovery process.
The concept of sustainability, a trend which continues to grow in importance, now has a broader scope. Beyond environmental responsibility, it now includes aspects of energy management, indoor air quality and high-performance systems.
out the years. It’s doubtful that sustainability will disappear from the facility management or business radar any time soon.”
While each trend has elements that are unique, many have common characteristics and demand similar skill sets. Understanding and respecting cultural norms and differences will help facility managers deal with change management, globalization and broadening diversity in the workforce.
To prepare for the future, facility management professionals should assess their competencies in these eight areas. Addressing these trends %%MDASSML%% through consideration, education and preparation %%MDASSML%% will arm facility managers with the tools they need to face the challenges ahead.
To download the full forecast report, visit www.ifma.org/tools/research/forecasting_reports.cfm .





Top Plant
The Top Plant program honors outstanding manufacturing facilities in North America.
Product of the Year
The Product of the Year program recognizes products newly released in the manufacturing industries.
System Integrator of the Year
Each year, a panel of Control Engineering and Plant Engineering editors and industry expert judges select the System Integrator of the Year Award winners in three categories.
June 2018
2018 Lubrication Guide, Motor and maintenance management, Control system migration
May 2018
Electrical standards, robots and Lean manufacturing, and how an aluminum packaging plant is helping community growth.
April 2018
2017 Product of the Year winners, retrofitting a press, IMTS and Hannover Messe preview, natural refrigerants, testing steam traps
June 2018
Machine learning, produced water benefits, programming cavity pumps
April 2018
ROVs, rigs, and the real time; wellsite valve manifolds; AI on a chip; analytics use for pipelines
February 2018
Focus on power systems, process safety, electrical and power systems, edge computing in the oil & gas industry
Spring 2018
Burners for heat-treating furnaces, CHP, dryers, gas humidification, and more
April 2018
Implementing a DCS, stepper motors, intelligent motion control, remote monitoring of irrigation systems
February 2018
Setting internal automation standards

Annual Salary Survey

After two years of economic concerns, manufacturing leaders once again have homed in on the single biggest issue facing their operations:

It's the workers—or more specifically, the lack of workers.

The 2017 Plant Engineering Salary Survey looks at not just what plant managers make, but what they think. As they look across their plants today, plant managers say they don’t have the operational depth to take on the new technologies and new challenges of global manufacturing.

Read more: 2017 Salary Survey

The Maintenance and Reliability Coach's blog
Maintenance and reliability tips and best practices from the maintenance and reliability coaches at Allied Reliability Group.
One Voice for Manufacturing
The One Voice for Manufacturing blog reports on federal public policy issues impacting the manufacturing sector. One Voice is a joint effort by the National Tooling and Machining...
The Maintenance and Reliability Professionals Blog
The Society for Maintenance and Reliability Professionals an organization devoted...
Machine Safety
Join this ongoing discussion of machine guarding topics, including solutions assessments, regulatory compliance, gap analysis...
Research Analyst Blog
IMS Research, recently acquired by IHS Inc., is a leading independent supplier of market research and consultancy to the global electronics industry.
Marshall on Maintenance
Maintenance is not optional in manufacturing. It’s a profit center, driving productivity and uptime while reducing overall repair costs.
Lachance on CMMS
The Lachance on CMMS blog is about current maintenance topics. Blogger Paul Lachance is president and chief technology officer for Smartware Group.
Electrical Safety Update
This digital report explains how plant engineers need to take greater care when it comes to electrical safety incidents on the plant floor.
Maintenance & Safety
The maintenance journey has been a long, slow trek for most manufacturers and has gone from preventive maintenance to predictive maintenance.
IIoT: Machines, Equipment, & Asset Management
Articles in this digital report highlight technologies that enable Industrial Internet of Things, IIoT-related products and strategies.
Randy Steele
Maintenance Manager; California Oils Corp.
Matthew J. Woo, PE, RCDD, LEED AP BD+C
Associate, Electrical Engineering; Wood Harbinger
Randy Oliver
Control Systems Engineer; Robert Bosch Corp.
Data Centers: Impacts of Climate and Cooling Technology
This course focuses on climate analysis, appropriateness of cooling system selection, and combining cooling systems.
Safety First: Arc Flash 101
This course will help identify and reveal electrical hazards and identify the solutions to implementing and maintaining a safe work environment.
Critical Power: Hospital Electrical Systems
This course explains how maintaining power and communication systems through emergency power-generation systems is critical.
click me