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    6 Tips to Build Your Best Workplace Management Resume

    Tiffany Bloodworth Rivers

    Many facilities managers are great at well, managing facilities but find writing a resume an overwhelmingly painful chore. Despite knowing what to do when the a/c goes out or when executives say it’s time to move, a lot of FMs don’t know what to do to land their next job.

    If you are one of these workplace managers, don’t worry. Here is the second part in our week long series about How to Land Your Dream FM Job. With just a few resources and some actionable tips, you’ll be able to create a rocking resume.

    6 Tips To Build Your Best Facilities Management Resume

    1. Customize Your Resume

    The first step to landing the facility management job you are seeking is to customize your resume specifically for the job you are applying for. While this may seem like a daunting task, perhaps even unnecessary, I can assure you that it is neither. A successful facilities manager is diversely talented, with attention to detail and communication an absolute must. Your first opportunity to showcase those talents (and how they can be applied in this position) is through your resume. Get a good feel for what it is the hiring company is looking for in a candidate and focus on ensuring those talents shine through. If you do not know specifics, research the organization, their mission and their goals for the future. This will provide you with enough information to ensure you highlight the proper talents, proving you are worth consideration.

    2. Grab Attention With Your Objective

    The objective section of your workplace management resume is your first opportunity to catch the hiring manager’s attention. With so many resumes to sift through, it is critical that you make the most of every word. Since the facilities management field spans virtually every industry, tailor your objective towards the specific industry and position you are seeking, utilizing words that both highlight your skills and match what the company is seeking.

    While it is necessary to use descriptive words in this section, avoid words that are over-used, “fluffy” words to ensure you don’t lose the reader’s attention. Grab your thesaurus and find ways to get your point across, but in a more creative and specific manner.

    A few words/terms to avoid are:

    • highly qualifiedbest_resume_tips.jpg
    • results focused
    • effectual leader
    • has talent for
    • energetic
    • confident
    • professional
    • successfully
    • able
    • capable
    • suitable
    • competent

    When using subjective words such as “excellent”, “motivated” and “seasoned”, provide real-world examples to back these statements up. This sets you apart from the rest, ensuring you will get noticed by the hiring professional.

    Let’s take a look at a few examples:

    • “Combine astute strategic, business, and project management skills with an 11-year track record of business consultancy and analysis that enables revenue and profit growth. Excellent analytical, organizational, and leadership skills. Seasoned, collaborative leader skilled in motivating staff to achieve aggressive goals and objectives. Global business operational perspective through exposure to diverse business protocols, particularly in North America and Europe. Led more than 800 pre-sales technical support staff organization that supported $7B to $8B in revenue. Skilled in product development with solid background in IT systems and HR.”
    • “Versatile, accomplished engineering manager with proven expertise managing maintenance operations in a wide range of industrial settings. Background includes over twenty years of international experience at maritime, manufacturing and chemical facilities. Exhibits a strong and firm approach to sustaining and encouraging safe work environments and demonstrated capacity to streamline operations. Applies continuous improvement principles to increase process and maintenance efficiency and company profits. Proven ability to draw, read and interpret blueprints and schematics. Strong skills in directing and motivating staffs with up to 200 members.”
    • “Driven, quality-engineering professional with over 15 years experience in project management, construction, site/facility management, grounds maintenance, operations and safety management. Utilize superior organizational skills to ensure the total facility, down to the smallest detail, meets user needs while upholding corporate standards. Exceptional problem solving, team building, leadership, budget-management, P & L projection and negotiation skills. Outstanding interpersonal, communications and conflict management abilities.”

    Visit our Facebook page to find more examples of how to write a quality resume Objective.

    If you have worked with an executive or department head that is willing to provide a quote regarding your work, that is a creative way to add value to your resume. A well thought-out quote supplies that added punch that sets you apart from the rest of the candidates. For example:

    "Steve excels at making the impossible possible. He has an innate ability to manage complex situations with ease and grace." VP of Real Estate, ABC company

    iStock_000065781067_Large.jpg3. Quantify Your Accomplishments

    In customizing your resume, tailoring your list of accomplishments/expertise should be your next focus. While a long list of accomplishments may seem great on the surface, the reader may lose interest before they reach the most relevant points. Should you decide to leave all accomplishments on your resume, consider the order so as to ensure your most valuable assets are spotlighted right away. Using the term “facilities manager” is a broad term; get creative and use your prior experience to create titles that highlight your areas of expertise. For example:

    • As a FM you likely managed the company’s the maintenance of all tangible assets. There are many responsibilities involved in this aspect of your position, so you want to choose the most relevant to both prior history and the specific position you are currently seeking. For example: Facilities Operation and Maintenance Management, Facilities Engineering, Chief Engineer, Director of Facilities, Maintenance Engineer.
    • Another facet of your FM position is analyzing budgetary data. This includes maximizing return on investments, reducing costs and increasing productivity. You must be astute at identifying what programs are currently working and which are not and developing a plan of action accordingly. Your skills must include: Asset Management, Budget Control and Implementation, Root Cause Analysis and/or Purchasing Management. Identify the term(s) that best highlight your skills and where they are needed for the job you are applying.
    • Your budgetary analysis will lead you to implementation of new solutions as well as dissolving ineffective programs. While you do not have to be an expert in everything, your knowledge must include every aspect of the organization, including IT, HR, finances and law. Therefore, highlighting your project management skills is a must. Determine the best terminology that encompasses skills/duties, such as: Project Management and Planning, Planning and Scheduling, Program Management Professional, Project Manager, Portfolio Management, Project Engineer.
    • Critical to the facility manager’s skill set is the ability to relate and communicate with individuals at every level of the company. FMs must have an open, communicative relationship with HR and IT to determine what needs are currently being met and what needs need to be addressed. A leader in Facilities Management must have a hand in ensuring training needs are met, not only for their employees, but also for themselves. A few terms to help get this skill set across are: Human Resource Development, Training and Development, Communication, Risk Management.
    • You also need to be able to track key facility management metrics to demonstrate you are meeting key objectives like improving space utilization and employee productivity while reducing costs. 

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    4. Highlight Your Career Accomplishments

    Once you have tailored your skills towards the position you are seeking, you must now turn your attention to your career accomplishments. Apply the same rule for this section as you did for your areas of expertise by highlighting your past experiences that most closely match what the hiring company is looking for. Unless specified, list only prior experience that would be of importance to the employer and choose your words carefully. For instance:

    “Managed a $21 million annual budget, including maintenance, new projects and operation consumables.” - The hiring manager is given insight into the size budget in which you are experienced as well as what projects/tasks were associated with said budget.

    Provide specifics regarding projects you developed and oversaw. For example: 

    “Served as team development and lead in $155,000 project to replace outdated and inefficient software programs, facilitating a more streamlined and productive approach in handling maintenance agreements, servicing tickets and communication across organization.” Or perhaps you: “Reduced contractor staff by 75% and annual costs by $250,000 by implementing an in-house training program for complex repairs and higher quality and safety standards.”

    Take a close look at the projects you developed and oversaw to completion and provide specifics regarding how the company was impacted by your ingenuity and expertise. By providing statistics, you avoid redundancy from one job to the next, while reiterating to hiring management why you would be best suited for the job.

    5. Highlight Your Leadership Skills

    Your role as the facilities manager requires you to possess great management skills, as yours is a position of leadership. Maintain a confident and professional tone at all times. Top facilities management professionals must exemplify leadership traits such as organizational skills, flexibility and management of conflicting priorities/demands. The ability to manage crises positively and prioritizing/balancing multiple tasks should come across to the reader. You must show the reader you can: make decisions, regardless of it’s popularity, problem solve through clear assessment and response, particularly when under pressure, supervise and motivate individuals, as well as communicate both verbally and in written form. Your career accomplishments is your first opportunity to convey this message. Choose your words carefully, inferring you are a strong motivator and relationship builder. 

    6. The Value of Recognition Programs

    The facilities manager often finds himself in the position of the unsung hero. Everything is quiet when things are going right, with communication high when something goes wrong. While quiet means there are no pressing issues, it can often lead the FM feeling invisible, never receiving credit for their work. There are a number of programs, such as FMXcellence and Maintenance Solutions Achievement Awards that honor facility achievements. Aside from the satisfaction you gain from receiving such an award, showcasing these accomplishments on your resume provides evidence of your work. This industry recognition can prove to be a great career-building tool.

    The key to building a quality facilities management resume is to tailor your resume around the specific organization’s requirements. Part of being a great FM leader is knowing your organization and the industry it is a part of. Start this process during the consideration stage and you will be a step above the rest. A well thought out resume convinces the hiring manager that you have what it takes to be a manager. Put your organizational and planning abilities to work, and they will work for you.

    In tomorrow's post of the Getting a FM Job blog series we will be identifying the questions to ask in an interview. And if you haven’t already done so, sign up for our blog so you are sure not to miss out.

    An intriguing resume is just the beginning. To learn more tips on snagging your dream workplace management position, check out our free guide A Facilities Leader’s Guide to Landing an Awesome Job!

    FM Job Guide

    Tiffany Bloodworth Rivers


    Tiffany Bloodworth Rivers

    Tiffany covers leadership and marketing topics and enjoys learning about how technology shapes our industry. Before iOFFICE, she worked in local news but don't hold that against her.

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