Hiring a Facilities Leader? Here’s What to Look For

by Elizabeth Dukes on September 13, 2016

Congratulations! You’re taking the first step toward a better enterprise: hiring a facilities leader. But before you extend any offers, it’s important to learn as much as you can about a 21st century facilities leader.Hiring a Facilities Leader

A facilities leader is a jack-of-all-trades. They’re in charge of maximizing the productivity of every element of a workplace, including not only equipment and physical space but also the workforce itself. The facilities leader is responsible for ensuring each of these elements is operating as one cohesive unit. He or she also must create an environment that can attract and retain top talent.

Let’s discuss the qualities of a superior facilities leader and why your next step after bringing one on board should be to invest in an integrated workforce management system (IWMS).

Interviewing a Facilities LeaderThe Abilities and Attributes of a Good Facilities Leader

There are six skills and characteristics all outstanding facilities leaders possess. When vetting and interviewing a facilities leader candidate, consider whether they have these traits.

  1. Analytic & Strategic
    Facilities leaders must be able to collect, aggregate and analyze data about company assets as well as personnel. Analytical skills are crucial—accumulating information is easy, but unless the data is made actionable, it’s worthless. Once the data is organized, the facilities leader must be proficient at using this information to devise effective operational strategies.
  2. Collaborative
    Facilities leaders used to be known as lone wolves, but now they must work with the HR and IT departments so the equipment and technology needs associated with onboarding new employees, supporting existing employees and offboarding exiting employees are all properly addressed. Therefore, they need to be adept at collaborating with multiple diverse teams.
  3. Economical
    The facilities leader is responsible for finding the balance between building an engaging and productive environment and staying within budget restrictions. He or she must be able to determine which investments will benefit the workplace and which won’t add value.
  4. Knowledgeable
    No matter which industry your business is in, it’s likely new innovations and developments are introduced regularly. The facilities leader must be current on the latest industry news to avoid using outdated methods and guarantee the workforce is as productive as possible.Interviewing a Facilities Leader
  5. Personable 
    Facilities leaders need to be able to establish a rapport with everyone in the company, from a C-level executive to an intern. Knowing how to connect with each employee and understand their needs will help the facilities leader make the best decisions on how to manage the workspace.
  6. Resourceful
    A facilities leader may not always have the assets they need, whether those are budget, manpower or time. He or she must be able to take advantage of the resources they do have to maintain (and improve) operational efficiency and employee satisfaction.

Why Now is the Time to Invest in an IWMS

If you’ve decided to recruit a facilities leader, you should also consider investing in an integrated workforce management solution (IWMS). An IWMS has evergreen benefits (enhanced visibility into the workplace, increased productivity and better asset allocation, to name a few) but recent developments have multiplied the need to invest in an IWMS software.

For example, as the internet of things (IoT) expands, hard-wired systems are becoming more and more obsolete. IWMS solutions allow facilities leaders to easily combine the data from multiple sub-systems and make more informed decisions about the workplace.

Additionally, the growing popularity of the Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) policy means more and more employees are working from their phones and tablets. As a result, they need to be able to access information from anywhere at anytime—something which IWMS software provides.

A facilities leader and an IWMS platform can help you transform your workspace and workforce into a productivity powerhouse. By using this article as a guide, you can be confident about the facilities leader candidate you choose and give him or her the necessary tools to upgrade your enterprise.

Ready to learn more about choosing an IWMS? Download our free eBook, 8 Practical Guidelines to Evaluating IWMS Software, to discover the most important factors to consider when choosing an IWMS.


Elizabeth Dukes

Elizabeth Dukes' pieces highlight the valuable role of the real estate and facility managers play in their organizations. Prior to iOFFICE, Elizabeth was in sales for large facility and office service outsourcing firm.

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