The EuroFM Research Network is meeting for the 23rd time in June 2024! The theme of the symposium centers around transformation to contribute to future-proof Facility Management (FM).
We invite you to submit your research proposal for the symposium and be a part of the FM transformation. The EuroFM network encourages both academic and professional researchers to submit their full or short research papers for the review process.
During World Workplace Europe 2024 we are once again organising a Student Challenge.
Prior to the WWEU conference, EuroFM would like to set-up a Student Challenge for local and International FM students from a Bachelor and Master level. In the weeks before the conference, the students will be divided into smaller groups that will work together virtually on a Challenge.
The results of this challenge will be presented by the team to the WWEU24 attendees, and the winning team will be chosen by a professional jury. Participants of the Student Challenge will receive complimentary access to the WWEU24 (6-7 March 2024) conference with a chance to also gain complimentary access to World Workplace in San Antonio Texas (9-11 October – including accommodation, excluding flight and other travel costs) as well as reference letters from the different partner associations.
Who are we looking for? A total of 12 to max. 16 dynamic and enthusiastic FM-students that would like to participate in the student challenge and present their results at the WWEU24 conference in Rotterdam.
Process Students who are interested in participating at the Student Challenge can apply by sending a motivational letter to Laurens Lamberts (email@example.com) by the 8thof November 2023. Please refer to the attached document for more information.
EuroFM is thrilled to announce the Call for the Best Facilities Management Industry Initiative. This award aims to recognize and honour outstanding initiatives that have made a significant impact on the Facilities Management landscape, driving progress, efficiency, and sustainability within the industry.
Facilities Management is a dynamic field that requires continuous innovation to adapt to the evolving needs of modern organizations and its employees. From optimizing energy consumption and implementing cutting-edge technologies to fostering sustainable practices and enhancing occupant experience, initiatives in this field play a crucial role in shaping the future of facilities management.
Therefore, we invite organizations, institutions, and individuals to showcase their relevant and remarkable initiatives that have transformed the Facilities Management industry. Whether you have pioneered a groundbreaking sustainability program, introduced a game-changing technology solution, or revolutionized service delivery through innovative practices, we want to hear from you!
We will select the Best EuroFM Industry Initiative based on the following criteria:
We seek initiatives that have challenged traditional practices, introducing new ideas, methodologies, or technologies that have significantly improved organisation processes or employees experiences with added value, efficiency, cost-effectiveness, or overall performance.
We value initiatives that have made a tangible and measurable impact on the Facilities Management industry, delivering positive outcomes for organizations, employees, suppliers, stakeholders, and the broader community.
We encourage initiatives that prioritize sustainable practices, promoting energy efficiency, waste reduction, environmental stewardship, and social responsibility within the Facilities Management realm.
We appreciate initiatives that foster collaboration and partnership within the industry, bringing together stakeholders from different disciplines to achieve shared goals and drive collective progress.
You will have the opportunity to showcase your initiative on the EuroFM conference stage, gain recognition from industry peers, and inspire others to push the boundaries of Facilities Management excellence. We will publish your showcase via our website and socials.
The Best Industry Initiative Award is not restricted to EuroFM members, we invite also non-EuroFM members to participate. Initiatives should help professionals to advance the development of the field and contribute to the body of knowledge for the workplace and facility management domain and they should not be a sales presentation for any service, product or company. Nothing in the initiative shall disparage or denigrate any person or group on the basis of race, sex, religion, age, national origin, ethnicity, sexual orientation, disability, or marital status; shall disparage or defame the name, goods, services or products of others; or shall create a hostile, offensive or intimidating environment.
The selection process involves a panel of industry experts in collaboration with EuroFM Board who will evaluate each initiative based on its merits and alignment with the criteria outlined above.
Deadline for submissions: 23 October 2023
Award Ceremony: EuroFM Conference in Istanbul, 9th November (Thursday) during Charity Networking dinner.
EuroFM is thrilled to announce a new initiative that celebrates educational excellence in Facilities Management: introducing the Best Teacher Award!
Facilities management plays a pivotal role in ensuring the best experiences of physical spaces from the smooth operation and maintenance to creating hospitable and inspiring workplaces and working environments. This wide field encompasses a diverse range of disciplines. From planning and maintenance, sustainability, security and safety, to service design and communication, teachers in various fields have dedicated themselves to imparting invaluable knowledge and skills to the next generation of facilities management professionals.
Therefore, EuroFM is happy to honour the best educators in FM field and invites universities, students, and educators themselves to recommend an FM educator for the Best FM Teacher Award. The award is open to all teaching staff in all European academic institutions, teaching facilities management courses or programmes.
Please submit the educator’s CV, outlining their educational career, a short description of their educational vision (max. 1 A4), a motivation why the educator should be nominated (max 1 A4) and reference names of students and fellow teachers. The submission form can be found here:
After an initial selection, the nominated candidates will be asked to provide at least two educational evaluations and material that characterise the nominated teacher (such as white papers, books, visuals, study guide, etc.) and referenced people can be contacted for further discussion.
The award will be rewarded at the EuroFM conference in Istanbul during the Charity Networking Dinner on the 9th of November (Thursday). The winner will be interviewed by EuroFM and this will be published via the EuroFM website.
The deadline for submitting recommendations is 23 October.
The Jury is composed of EuroFM Board members and selected EuroFM Ambassadors related to education.
If you have additional questions, do not hesitate to contact us: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Which kind of contribution does digitalization and the use of data as well intelligent software make facility management better, faster and more efficient? Future challenges for Facility Management such as sustainability, innovative flexible workplace management and the automation of reporting processes are drivers of innovation in FM. Digitization can not only make a major contribution to this, it can also enable FM-Companies to perform processes economically in the first place.
Digitalization in Facility Management (FM) brings with it several significant benefits and opportunities. Here are some of the key chances that arise through digitalization in FM:
Improved Efficiency Digital tools and automation streamline FM processes, reduce manual work and improve overall operational efficiency. Tasks such as work order management, asset tracking, and scheduling preventive maintenance can be automated, saving time and reducing errors.
Enhanced Data-driven Decision Making Digitalization enables FM professionals to collect and analyze large volumes of data from various sources, such as IoT sensors, CMMS, and energy management systems. This data provides valuable insights into facility performance, resource utilization, and occupant behavior, allowing for informed decision making and optimization of FM strategies.
Predictive Maintenance By leveraging data analytics and machine learning algorithms, FM professionals can gain insights into facility performance, predict maintenance needs, and optimize resource allocation. Predictive maintenance helps to identify equipment failures before they occur, reducing downtime and improving overall operational efficiency.
Cost Reduction Digitalization helps to optimize resource allocation and reduce operational costs in FM. Through real-time data monitoring, energy management systems, and smart building controls, facilities can identify energy inefficiencies, implement energy-saving measures, and optimize resource usage, resulting in cost savings.
Improved Occupant Experience Digital solutions enable better communication and engagement with facility occupants. Mobile apps and self-service portals allow occupants to report issues, request services, and provide feedback easily. This improves response time, enhances customer satisfaction, and promotes a positive occupant experience.
Sustainability and Environmental Efficiency Digital tools and systems contribute to sustainability goals in FM. Energy management systems, IoT sensors, and BIM technologies help optimize energy consumption, reduce waste, and enhance environmental efficiency. Data analytics can identify opportunities for energy savings and support the implementation of sustainable practices.
Integration and Collaboration Digitalization enables integration and collaboration across different FM functions and stakeholders. Integrated software platforms, such as IWMS, facilitate seamless data sharing and communication among various teams, including maintenance, space management, and procurement. This enhances coordination, improves workflow, and fosters collaboration.
Continuous Improvement Digitalization supports a culture of continuous improvement in FM. By leveraging data analytics and performance metrics, FM professionals can monitor Key Performance Indicators (KPIs), identify areas for improvement, and implement targeted strategies for enhanced facility management.
Mobile Applications: Mobile apps are increasingly being used by FM professionals to streamline work processes, improve communication, and enhance productivity. These apps boost tasks such as facility inspections, work order management, asset tracking, and real-time collaboration among team members.
Summary Of course, not everything in digitization is gold, and numerous dangers must be avoided. Unfortunately, the fact that transformation represents a major investment is unescapable. Strategic planning and procurement and the use of the necessary tools are cost-intensive: Also, the training or recruitment of qualified experts is particularly expensive in order to build up the necessary expertise.
It is important to note that digitalization also brings its own challenges, such as data security, system integration, and change management. However, by effectively addressing these challenges, organizations can harness the opportunities presented by digitalization to transform their FM practices and achieve improved outcomes.
Overall, digitalization in FM enables more efficient and data-driven decision-making, enhances operational performance, and improves the overall management of facilities. It helps FM professionals to optimize resources, reduce costs, and deliver better services to occupants and stakeholders.
I give the pencil to Michael May, ambassador of Germany to write the next EuroFM blog.
In recent years, the digital revolution has reshaped industries across the globe, and facility management is no exception. The convergence of technology and facility management has given rise to a new era of efficiency and enhanced productivity.
Digitalization in facility management brings forth a plethora of opportunities to cooperate by using data in a common environment for all, owner, occupants, and facility managers.
Common Data Environment CDE Digitalization allows facility managers to manage data and documents in one place, to connect user and provider of operational processes and systems throughout the building lifecycle whereas data becomes an invaluable source of truth. This helps to improve collaboration, reduce the risk of errors and delays, and support compliance with relevant standards and regulations.
Common use of data Digitalization in FM requires standardization. By collaborating over the various FM disciplines in a company to define common data structure and data management, the mutual understanding increases significantly. Using the same data rises the quality of the data itself and makes processes more efficient. Therefore, facility managers can identify trends, patterns, and potential areas of improvement much easier. This data-driven approach enables proactive maintenance, predictive asset management, resource optimization, etc..
Value of common data If you have ever had to bring data from multiple systems and applications together, you know what an expensive and time-consuming task that can be. Without being able to share and understand the same data easily, each application or process runs on its own and requires separate data maintenance. A common data model offers comprehensive reporting and analytics capabilities, providing valuable insights for strategic decision-making and resource optimization. Facility managers can identify energy-saving opportunities, optimize space utilization, and implement sustainability initiatives based on accurate insights derived from real-time data.
Transformation is demanding Digitalization plays a pivotal role in transforming facility management by driving significant changes and improvements across various aspects of the field. Facility managers have been taught to think and operate in centralized, siloed, hierarchical structures, to focus on efficiency and predictability in order to scale reliable, consistent delivery of products and services. But digitization requires a great willingness to learn new things, to approach things differently and to work together with others. A facility manager must be willing to rethink processes and work in a much more interdisciplinary and integral way.
Developing and piloting a new FM concept requires a great deal of commitment by the facility manager and the support of management. New investments must be justified, i.e. the added value must be shown. Once this important milestone has been reached, the implementation begins, which requires a lot of persuasion for the new solution and patience in the change management process from everyone involved.
Conventional leadership principles were not designed for the demands of digital transformation. We must adapt them. We do not need to change what we think as much as we must change how we think. In cooperation with the person responsible for change from human resources and IT specialists from computer science, we can achieve our goals in digitization.
Conclusion As digitalization continues to advance, facility managers must stay agile and embrace and drive innovation to leverage its full potential for a sustainable and efficient future in facility management. Interdisciplinary cooperation allows us to achieve much more than we think today. Digitalization has the transformative power and therefore a big impact on facility management. Let’s recognize the potential and use it.
I give the pencil to Thomas Madritsch, ambassador of Austria to write the next EuroFM blog.
‘In recent years, the two worlds within facility management, service provision, and providing a well-functioning work environment, have come closer together.’
Natalie Hofman assumed the role of Chair of EuroFM in February of this year. Let’s delve into her background and explore her journey in the field of facility management. Furthermore, we’ll uncover the reasons behind her ascent to the presidency and discuss the challenges that she anticipates for EuroFM over the next five years.
Who is Natalie Hofman “I have two children and I live happily in The Hague. For the past three decades, I have dedicated my career to the field of facility management. With a background in the hospitality industry, I stumbled into the field of facility management by chance. I made the transition from the “soft” side to the “hard” side of the field, moving from service provision to the building and its technical aspects, everything that involves the interior and exterior of a building. Seven years ago, I became a self-employed entrepreneur. Since then, I have been primarily supporting organisations in addressing various issues, often in the organisational domain of facility management, such as how companies can make their organisations future-proof. Additionally, I support boards of associations and foundations, often in the role of “mediation,” focusing on optimizing collaboration.”
How did you get involved in the EuroFM network? “Throughout my career, I have been dedicated to advancing the field. It all started with being an editor for the Facility Management International (FMI) magazine. Over time, I became more involved in the network itself. Eventually, I became the President of FMN (Facility Management Nederland), and from that position, I joined the board of EuroFM three years ago.”
Has there been a lot of change due to the pandemic? “Due to the pandemic, the field of facility management has undergone significant changes, in a positive sense. Previously, I often had to explain what my field of work entailed at social gatherings. But now, thanks to the pandemic, we have collectively started thinking about the actual purpose of the office. When do we go to the office, and what work can or would you rather do from home? Furthermore, the field has started contemplating how to create a healthy and safe working environment within the office. For example, how do we maintain a healthy indoor climate and promote conscious behavior while drastically transforming the function of the building? In recent years, the two worlds of service provision and providing a well-functioning work environment have come closer together.
We are re-evaluating what we used to take for granted and exploring other possibilities. Younger generations also have different needs than the established order, which has a different impact on the work environment. We are already witnessing the first signs of organisations consciously choosing to divest from costly real estate and considering what employees themselves want. What does the employee in question need to perform their work effectively? This has led to the emergence of new approaches, but we are still at the beginning because our field has not been very innovative in the past twenty years. It will take several more years for us to find a form that truly works for everyone.”
What role does EuroFM play within the industry? “There is a significant need for knowledge sharing and exchanging experiences within and outside the industry. A professional or industry association has an important task of connecting people and sharing knowledge. Facility management is not a recognized industry, but it is a profession in which 88 million people worldwide work. In this field, it is essential to keep track of relevant research being conducted worldwide and ensure that it reaches the members within the network. Reinventing the wheel every time there are significant changes, such as modifying the work environment, is costly and time-consuming. It is beneficial to be able to draw on existing examples.”
Why did you become the Chair? “EuroFM is a European network organisation. In my daily life, I also work for an international organisation. So it aligns with what I already do, and I find it very interesting to see what is being developed within our field in Europe and to learn from it. But also, compared to other countries, we are advanced in the development of our field. In the Netherlands, there are eight hbo-programs in facility management. That is significantly higher compared to other countries. For example, in Spain, there are only two. Countries around us are definitely interested in how we do things here. As Chair, I am happy to contribute to this.”
What do you see as the biggest challenges for the network in the next five years? “One of the biggest challenges for the networks and associations is working with volunteers, and EuroFM is no exception. The workload in our field is high. “Don’t forget that facility costs always form an expense without any direct revenue. Budget cuts are often implemented in our area. I always say: Leading a network or being on a board is essentially like having a job; you have to run a company together. At certain times, you depend on a few key players who also volunteer their efforts. The budget is limited, and we do not receive subsidies or other financing. We really rely on members paying their dues. This means we don’t have the ability to incur significant expenses.”
Another challenge is sustainability. It’s high on everyone’s agenda, but the question is how to make it concrete and ensure sufficient attention is given to it. Other topics, such as price increases and labor shortages, are now coming to the forefront. We need to be careful that these issues don’t overshadow sustainability and push it lower on the priority list. It’s necessary to shape the energy transition and genuinely consider circular usage instead of constantly purchasing new products. The COVID-19 pandemic has helped restructure mobility. We are already driving less, which is good. But how will we sustain this in the coming years? We’re seeing traffic congestion slowly returning, so have we achieved something, or do we need to refocus on this issue?”
What do you hope to achieve during your presidency? When will you be proud? “After COVID-19, we had to make a sort of fresh start. I would like to see us maintain and further develop the program we started during the pandemic period. This includes organising several informative sessions per year. I would also be proud if we can increase our membership numbers. Despite the current workload, members are willing to participate and see the value of being part of an association. This way, EuroFM can continue to grow as a network within Europe.”
What is the current representation of young professionals in the industry association? “In terms of effective members, the representation of young professionals is actually low. However, our reach is extensive through social media. We are an association that works with memberships from universities, colleges, and organisations, so we have relatively easy access to many young professionals. Students from these educational institutions can participate in the events we organize through our network. Nevertheless, it’s challenging because today’s students are being pulled in different directions. They also have a different mindset compared to a few years ago. The job market has changed, and there is a greater guarantee of employment after graduation than ten years ago. The need for a strong connection to the job market is less crucial as job opportunities come more easily.
Therefore, we try to address topics that resonate with young professionals, always with a link to our field, such as sustainability. Today’s youth has different principles when it comes to work execution and views organisations differently. It’s no longer enough to claim sustainability on your website; young professionals want to see it in action. They want sustainability to be deeply embedded in every aspect. This means managing supply chains in a certain way, being socially sustainable, and creating a work environment with good health and manageable workload. This is the theme where we need to take steps together in the coming years.”
What does EuroFM look like in ten years? “I sincerely hope that our membership has doubled, both in numbers and diversity. We are very broad in our scope. We don’t have our own industry classification but draw from other industries. We are closely related to powerful sectors such as the technical or cleaning industry, which have their own collective labor agreements. This makes it easier to share knowledge but more challenging to attract “exclusive” members to our network. A dedicated collective labor agreement for the facility management industry is a significant ambition that cannot be easily achieved. Collaboration with other industry organisations is necessary to initiate such an agreement because our current structure does not support it.”
What does Lejeune Association Management mean for the network? “The association is essentially a company, and having a back office is essential. It’s reassuring to have an organisation supporting us as volunteers to handle certain matters properly. Lejeune has been fulfilling this role for a few years now. They bring extensive experience, both nationally and internationally. This helps to get certain initiatives off the ground and ensure their sustainability. I find that very gratifying.”
The next EuroFM researcher meetup is organized on Friday 16th of June 2023 between 14-16 (CEST) in Zoom. If you have not already registered in for the meetup, you can do it here.
In the multidisciplinary FM, new concepts are arising, and existing concepts are developing. In the meetup, we will focus on the FM concepts that you are using or interested in using in your research. Before the meeting, we hope that you could spend a brief moment and list the key FM concepts in your research. As an inspiration, we have invited three researchers from closely related disciplines to introduce their research and the key concepts they are using in their research. After the presentations and discussion, the working groups will meet, discuss on their concepts, and plan the next steps.
Schedule in the meetup on 16th of June (CEST):
14.00 Welcome by Tuuli (Research chair) Latest EuroFM research news and practicalities
14.10 Smart Tourism, Bert Smith (BUAS) Aesthetics in the built environment, Sanna Lehtinen (Aalto University and Helsinki University) Discussion
15:00 Working groups • Key concepts in your FM research? • Next steps of your working group to prepare for EuroFM conference 2023 in Istanbul?
15:45 Summarizing the discussion of the working groups
16:00 Closing (Tuuli)
You can find more information about the EuroFM researcher meetups here.
We hope to see you at the meetup! If you have any questions or comments, please do not hesitate to contact us via email. For using Slack please send an e-mail to Tuuli, email@example.com for receiving the link to join.
Kindest regards, Tuuli (firstname.lastname@example.org), Riikka, Vitalija, Jaap, Hannah and Chiara Organizing team of the EuroFM researcher meetups
Today, 10 May 2023, we together with our members, celebrate World FM Day. A inspiring moment to memorize on our profession and the impact we make in the daily workspace environment. It is my pleasure as Chair of EuroFM to start the Ambassador blog in which the EuroFM Ambassador’s give their view about subjects like workplace, sustainability, technology of other interesting topics.
We have been talking about diversity and inclusive work environments for some time now, but what do we actually mean and what are the differences between these commonly used terms? I recently spoke to someone who thought this had to do with sexual harassment and its prevention. Of course everyone knows the “Me too” speak-up and in the Netherlands the tv Voice of Holland has shown that a diseased culture and wrong abuse of power have major consequences for a working environment. Situations that have been recognizable for many people for a very long time and are mainly aimed at the fear of speaking out. Diversity and inclusiveness are concepts that indicate very different aspects, but if they are used incorrectly or underestimated, “Me Too” or decreasing of performance can play into the hands. Facility Management can play an important role in the complex relationship between inclusiveness and diversity.
During World Workplace Europe 2023 in Rotterdam, Pa Sinyan of Galup simply explained the differences between inclusiveness and diversity and he also made a clear link to the profession of facility management. What should we as Facility Manager do to achieve a safe, innovative and productive culture? “Diversity is more than just addressing gender or race. It involves embracing a full spectrum of differences among people that affect their interactions and relationships,” says Sinyan. The identity of an organization is determined by the right mix of primary, secondary, organizational and cultural aspects. When you have no knowledge of the background of your employees, no clear rules on how you interact with each other and management is in an ivory tower and is only busy getting rid of targets, then there is simply not enough time for optimizing the cooperation and connecting the different backgrounds. If you also have a working environment where everyone is in a cubicle or works at home and there is no room to relax during an intensive working day, then the foundation has been laid not to get the most out of the organization and the employees. Inclusion refers to the extent to which diverse employees are valued, respected, accepted and encouraged to fully participate in the organization. So if you do not pay attention to the differences in your organization, do not invest enough in them and do not make sufficient agreements about the way of working together, then you will not create a safe and healthy working environment. Diversity is a fact, it’s just there. You create inclusiveness through creating opportunities, take care and attention.
Employees spend most of their 24 hours at work, many relationships arise at work, so in order to accelerate in the work environment, we must at least dive into the differences and similarities. In the private environment it is quite normal to ask for help if things are no longer running smoothly in your relationship or if you have financial problems, but in the workplace little attention is paid to the fact that conflicts in an environment where various races, religions, age, gender, generation, (dis)ability, ethnicity, sexual orientation, languages, education, family status, personal style interact work and where there are cultural differences, an individual approach is also required. HR departments are more and more focused on filling systems and arranging terms of employment and packages and are given less time to invest in the most important working capital, the employee. If there is insufficient respect for the employee, then a manager will not sufficiently use the strength of the employee and as a result, the leader of an organization will have to deal with an imbalance in the culture of his organization.
The Facility Manager needs knowledge about the aspects that influence diversity and inclusiveness. By diving into this and determining together with HR and management what is needed to facilitate this, the Facility Manager can professionalise his work even more and contribute to higher performance. A nice aspect to start with on World FM day, the day on which the most beautiful field in the world is brought to the attention. On May 10, 2023, you are invited to participate the EuroFM World FM day event to connect and to speak up.
I give the pencil to Susanna Caravatti, ambassador of Switserland to write the next EuroFM blog.
World FM day is an initiative run through Global FM with the aim to recognize and celebrate the vital work that workplaces and facilities management do. This year we emphasize those that are ‘making a real difference’ which is the theme of the day and celebrate it on Wednesday 10th May.
Join us online from 3 PM CEST and meet FM Ambassadors from all over the world, sharing their experiences and discussing what’s ahead for our field.
You can register for the event by clicking here. The event participation is free of charge and open to both EuroFM Members and non-members.
Programme (all timing is in CEST):
15:00 – 15:05
Welcome Natalie Hofman – EuroFM Chair
15:05 – 15:15
How FM makes a real difference – Part 1 EuroFM Ambassadors
15:15 – 16:00
FM in the World – Business Panel Moderator: Levent Alatlı Speakers: Ed Baldwin (UK), Maria Morapedi (Botswana) and Shukri Habib (Lebanon)
16:00 – 16:10
How FM makes a real difference – Part 2 EuroFM Ambassadors
16:10 – 16:55
FM in the World – Education/Research Panel Moderator: Vitalija Danivska Speakers: Rachel Kuijlenburg (The Netherlands), Thomas Madritsch (Austria) and Tilly Baute (Belgium)
16:55 – 17:00
Closing by EuroFM Chair
World FM Day is an iniative of Global FM, for more information see www.globalfm.org
EuroFM calls for research papers to be presented in the 22nd EuroFM Research Symposium 2023 hosted in the EuroFM Conference on 08-11 November 2023 in Istanbul.
The theme of the conference is ‘Shaping the next generation of FM’. The EuroFM network encourages researchers to submit their full (10-12 pages) or short (5-6 pages) papers to EuroFM for a review and to join the research symposium.
It is with humble joy we announce the new EuroFM Board. They will take over the reins from the former Board. In recognition of their tremendous efforts, we want to thank the former Board for their dedication to the cause of EuroFM.
During the special GMM which was held on 25January, the new board was introduced to the EuroFM Members and Ambassadors. Main topic was the proposal for the distribution of the various roles and responsibilities amongst the Board members, which is approved as followed: