In the Greenroom, we take a look at the newest and the best developments. We want to keep workplaces cleaner, greener and safer. And it is the Facilities Manager who actually makes a difference in business terms.
This figure in modern management is increasingly more important and Alsco helps them keep up with the newest trends in the industry.
The Facilities Manager has proven to be one of the most significant add ons to a good management structure. It is simple to see why.
This person covers a large number of office-related issues. Without a Facilities Manager there would be no single person to overview and handle anything from health and safety to floor plans and design.
We don’t need to tell you about the importance of adhering to the lengthy list of Health and Safety Regulations, nor the significance of having a healthy, clean and happy workplace environment for your staff to work in. The needs of a Facilities Manager play a great role in Alsco solutions. They are a major influence achieving all of those things.
What Does Facilities Management Entail?
It’s all about keeping the facilities in a business premises in proper working order. Definitions of the role state that the Facilities Manager is responsible for the coordination of space, infrastructure, people and organization, but added to that is a range of “non-core responsibilities” that brings the number of areas of responsibility up to 11 sectors.
Global Job Task Analysis carried out in 2009 by the International Facility Management Association (IFMA), lists sectors as follows:
- Emergency Preparedness and Business Continuity
- Environmental Stewardship and Sustainability
- Finance and Business
- Human Factors
- Leadership and Strategy
- Operations and Maintenance
- Project Management
- Real Estate and Property Management
Workplace safety, regulatory compliance and proper management and maintenance of business premises and systems is primary. However, there is a need for innovation and constant development. This means that the Facilities Manager must also find cost-effective ways to satisfy the job obligations. That is the exact area where Alsco can offer some of its best solutions.
Shouldering The Responsibility
No business, big or small, can afford not to care about hygiene, health and safety, as well as maintenance obligations. This means that the Facilities Manager has a range of responsibilities. Some of them might involve data security, building operations, office layout or contract tendering.
There are 5 main areas, however, that Facilities Managers are responsible for:
Another area of responsibility that requires careful attention and continuous monitoring, fire safety issues influence workplace safety and business insurance. Statistics show that fire provides the highest risk to life in the workplace. Not only that, but the workplace is in danger of destruction, which can seriously cripple a business. It can cause anything from the job losses to operating capabilities.
Regular inspections, record keeping, update of legal documents and certificates, fire safety equipment checks – these all fall under the duties of a Facilities Manager. Fire safety standards maintenance and management are first and foremost for him or her.
Cleaning And Hygiene
Levels of hygiene in the workplace can pose serious problems if not taken seriously. It’s not just a matter of keeping carpets vacuum or floor surfaces mopped, or even keeping boardroom tables polished. It is also about keeping washrooms, kitchens and canteens bacteria free and the risk of illness to personnel as low as possible.
Cleaning is mostly done outside office hours. There are, however, some areas that require constant attention, such as the washrooms. Restocking supplies is in some cases a daily task. This includes hand soap, towels, toilet paper, and cleaning products. Again, this requires scheduling. Sometimes it is hourly, sometimes daily, weekly, or monthly.
Safety and Health
This is a hugely important aspect of modern business management. The range of government and industry regulations which a workplace needs to satisfy is quite extensive and detailed, from first aid codes of practice to the management of hazardous chemicals in the workplace. This makes it difficult for Health and Safety officer to properly ensure compliance and adequate preparation. Especially if it is someone who is employed only part-time.
Dedicated Facilities Manager is there to make sure regulations are adhered to and to monitor and maintain. This is crucial in avoiding serious consequences. They can include fines on the one end of the spectrum and life-threatening situations of the other. Morally and financially, businesses will inevitably suffer if they occur. Other costly consequences you are exposing your business may include:
- Injury compensation
- Insurance claims
- Loss of business and investment
- Criminal prosecution
Inspections and Maintenance
Regular maintenance and inspection creates the need for schedules, depending on the size of the workplace. Fire safety standards, as well as those for health and safety or hygiene at the workplace might mean detailed inspections. They might occur as often as once a month.
Adequate stocks, working equipment and efficient systems – these are the purposes of inspections. Facilities Manager needs to draw up schedules, list inadequacies, ask for replacement or repair. Eventually, all this needs to be documented and placed in the archive.
Space Allocation And Changes
Ever heard of Churn Rate? It is a common practice of changing the office layout regularly. Why? In order to refresh the workspace. This is best handled by having a dedicated full-time employee. Yes, you’ve guessed it, a Facilities Manager takes this under her/his wing as well. Locations of workstations, filing cabinets, water coolers, even plants in their pots. Perhaps not an interior designer by calling, the Facilities Manager still has to plan all of it.
The Facilities Manager can insure the layout, adhere to workplace regulations, which include:
- Ventilation and temperature control standards
- Sufficient access and traffic allowance
- Space per staff member rates
- Adequate signs (exits, toilets, general segmentation, room names etc.)
- Office lighting levels
- Refreshment stations (snacks, coffee, water, etc.)
What Alsco Brings To Your Business
Alsco has a scope of services to help with health and safety compliance, workplace hygiene improvements and a healthier work environment in general. Alsco’s areas of expertise include various fields that can be tailored for the needs of a particular industry.
From first aid kits to hygiene services, from floor mats to medical emergency equipment. Alsco is the leading name in the industry.
What Facilities Managers have to deal with are quality and cons efficiency. Working together with the Finance Department, they are trying to get best value for money. This is something that differentiates Alsco from other companies. The product is rented and not purchased, and maintenance is regular. This system brings with it several advantages:
Full Compliance Without Complications
Health and safety regulations have some pretty strict rules and failing to comply with them can result in some severe fines. The thing is that the area is an evolving one, and staying on top of every little regulation change can be a headache.
It is part of Alsco’s business to be aware of any changes to health and safety regulations. This, in turn, allows for immediate reaction to these changes, which makes the full compliance achieved with less complications.
Lower Costs By Using Rental Services
A monthly fee means that there is no large initial investment in supplies and equipment, which can in many cases cause significant costs to companies. The list of equipment includes electric hand dryers, soap dispensers and sanitary bins in the restrooms. Or, even more complicated machines such as Automated External Defibrillator (AED), eyewash stations and first aid kit, or even eco-safe washers for cleaning machine parts.
The costs can start soaring, especially if your business requires this type of equipment in several locations. On the other hand, rental services are tax deductible, so you save money too.
Maintain Health And Safety And Hygiene Levels With Maintenance Services
You have finally gathered all the necessary items and equipment, but what if some of it developes a fault? Who do you go to? How do you get a replacement and how fast?
This is where Alsco’s fully managed rental service kicks in. All the equipment is inspected, checked, cleaned and (if necessary) are replaced to ensure the business complies with the relevant regulations.
Restocking Services Keeps You Prepared
Running out of disinfectant or gauze at exactly the worst possible moment is a real risk. If your First Aid Kit is lacking items, it can make a difference in genuine danger situations.
To deal with this type of emergency, Alsco is there to make sure everything is fully stocked. Enough of each item to be sure that any crisis can be overcome, even when it involves several injuries at once.
Alsco Managed Rental Services
Health and safety regulations consider the quality of work environment and the wellbeing of staff very important. This poses the challenge for Facilities Managers to satisfy these key areas as well as any additional areas that the particular business may provide.
When Alsco was founded in the early 1960s, the regulations were fewer and the pressure was less. At the time, our rental services were designed primarily to lower our clients’ costs. As the regulations have grown, and the need for a Facilities Manager developed, our services have evolved to ease the pressure and maximize convenience while also increasing cost-efficiency.
Alsco has an extensive range of fully managed rental services on offer. They are attended to by dedicated teams who look after everything from supply restocking to equipment maintenance. This allows you to concentrate on running your business. The range includes:
First Aid Kits – fully managed rental services make sure you don’t have to worry about stocking your first aid kit and ensuring it is in proper working order. We even colour code items to ensure what you need is easily found.
First Aid Training – fully managed training services that educate your staff on the techniques that can save lives in an emergency. First Aid and Fire & Evacuation courses are offered, while a secure online system helps you keep track of all training records, and alerts you when training renewals are required.
Alsco Mats – a variety of floor mats that can help counter the negative impact of wet wintry weather. The range of mats available includes non-slip mats that also offer a degree of moisture absorbance.
Defibrillators – this is a vital area if you want to be ready to deal with cardiovascular problems in an emergency. The Automated External Defibrillator (AED) can keep a work colleague alive until the paramedics arrive.
Workwear – sourcing high quality, long-wearing workwear for industrial, workshop, laboratories or kitchen staff can be a challenge. Alsco offers expertly designed work clothing for a variety of sectors and will then wash, replace and deliver them to you.
Industrial Services – an effective parts cleaner is a must have for any workshop or garage. The EcoSafe Washer is there for you, satisfying both your work needs and a desire for the cleaner environment.
If you would like to know more, feel free to click on the links detailing the services listed above or contact Alsco directly by filling out an online enquiry form. Alternatively, give us a call anytime.