Safeguarding against Brexit with facilities management
04 November 2016
As the implications of Brexit continue to be a hot topic of boardroom discussion, it may be surprising to learn that senior management in a number of large companies are turning to their facilities management divisions to help protect their bottom line and stabilise operations in advance of the impending Brexit aftermath.
The survey – of Engineers Ireland members working and operating in Great Britain, Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland – found that over one quarter have now changed their plans for hiring or investment, while over 38 per cent have had commercial deals paused or unfavourably altered as a result of Brexit.
Facilities management is one of Europe’s fastest growing industries and is valued at over €130 billion, ranking it among the most valuable assets to a professional organisation. Now considered more than simply premises upkeep, facilities management provides essential support for strategic decisions that span HR for recruitment and retention, corporate environmental goals, and harnessing current performance data for future real estate strategy.
“Ireland’s facilities management industry potentially has much to gain post-Brexit. Predictions signal increased investment in Ireland as a number of British domiciled companies consider relocation here, translating into a higher demand for office space availability bringing an initial upswing to the growing construction and fit-out sector as well as long-term sustenance for both hard and soft facilities management services,” said Denis Egan, MD of Weston Facilities Services and BIFM Ireland committee member.
This is not to say that facilities management is immune to the Brexit-born barriers and potential legal restrictions that could arise from the decision. Enterprises who currently operate across borders might find it may become more difficult to recruit, retain or move employees from the UK to the EU and vice versa, which could give rise to skills gaps, an inability to service customers in relevant countries and a loss of talent. It is highly unlikely that legislation regarding health and safety, and energy performance will change significantly.
“We can’t conclude that Brexit will bring about positive outcomes in Ireland for all sectors in which facilities management operates. The Irish manufacturing industry, and the food sector in particular which exports heavily to the UK is likely to incur significant losses considering 40 per cent of indigenous manufacturing export is to the UK.
“The weaker sterling will also likely have a knock on effect to the hotel and leisure Industry as tourists look for better value for their Euro or Dollar so the challenge for the facilities management teams in those sectors is quite different to those working in other industries that may benefit from Brexit. Combined with the release of the UK and Irish budgets, all industries, FM included, are poised in wait-and-see position post-Brexit,” added Egan.
The British Institute of Facilities Management (BIFM) Ireland FM Summit – ‘Workplace partnerships – Rethinking FM’ due to take place Friday, November 25 at Croke Park. It will endeavour to support facilities managers as they sharpen their skillset for the dynamics and challenges that lie ahead in the transforming marketplace.
For further information or booking visit www.bifmireland.org.ukhttp://www.engineersjournal.ie/2016/11/04/safeguarding-against-brexit-with-facilities-management/http://www.engineersjournal.ie/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/brexit-1-1024x678.jpghttp://www.engineersjournal.ie/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/brexit-1-300x300.jpgNewsBrexit,European Union,UK