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5 Ways to Improve Your Facility Management Operations

When it comes to manufacturing, effective facility management (FM) is just as important to a company’s bottom line as the manufacturing processes used to create products. Here are five ways to improve your facility management operations to help maximize productivity and minimize costs.

Xomety X
By Team Xometry
March 8, 2024
 4 min read
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When it comes to manufacturing, effective facility management (FM) is just as important to a company’s bottom line as the manufacturing processes used to create products. The core infrastructure of a facility (heating and cooling, water, power, etc.) and industrial planning operations (plant layout, maintenance, sustainability activities, risk management, etc.) don’t just ensure that the facility functions. They also impact the comfort and productivity of your workforce, product quality, and manufacturing overhead costs. Without an effective facility management strategy in place, companies will struggle to achieve their full potential and risk losing out to competitors. Here are five ways to improve your facility management operations to help maximize productivity and minimize costs.

1. Tailor Facility Management to Specific Needs

Facility management (FM) strategies and procedures will differ from company to company. It’s essential to adapt your FM strategy to your specific needs. Complex and technologically advanced workplaces require flexible, customized workflows that help facility managers collect, monitor, and report on all facets of a facility. Having a robust, objective view of all facets of a facility can enable facility managers to effectively and efficiently address issues and provide solutions. Whether your company’s top priority is preventative maintenance, effective asset management, or streamlined production scheduling, having a facility management strategy tailored to your needs will help increase productivity and reduce costs.

2. Centralize and Automate Facility Management Operations

Given all the technology and software available today, manufacturers can easily centralize and automate their facility management operations. Computer-aided facility management (CAFM) software is a powerful tool with many capabilities. Perhaps most powerful is the software’s ability to aid companies in maintenance management and building administration. 

In the past, the need to repair equipment or machinery was communicated to the appropriate individual(s) via word of mouth or on paper forms, in accordance with the company’s procedures. However, with CAFM, requests for maintenance can be made online where companies can prioritize decisions and tasks using a centralized database containing information related to all machinery and equipment in need of repair, the urgency of repair, and request dates, among other things. 

CAFM also enables companies to view, control, and automate different aspects of a building’s administration — from HVAC and lighting to water and air lines — all in a single program. As a result, companies are able to exert greater control over their maintenance and building administration processes, which can lead to improved energy efficiency and lower operating costs.

3. Administer a Preventative Maintenance Program

Preventative maintenance can be an excellent way to improve facility management operations. Routinely completing maintenance will not only increase the life of equipment but will also lead to less downtime and reduced reactive maintenance. If preventive maintenance is performed in conjunction with a CAFM, the software can help companies track and organize preventive maintenance tasks and other metrics as well as identify areas of existing preventive maintenance practices that can be optimized. Preventive maintenance can be a strong tool in improving facility management operations.

4. Communicate with Employees and Contractors

It’s no surprise that for facility management to be successful, companies must engage with their employees across all departments. It is imperative to inform all employees of the facility layout, and emergency evacuation routes. When changes are made to these layouts, it’s important to communicate this to all employees. When implementing new procedures or training new employees, it’s crucial to listen attentively to their concerns and answer their questions appropriately. This helps them feel like a valued part of the team and that their work has a purpose ensuring greater productivity and higher morale. Likewise, it is important to establish effective communication procedures with contractors and vendors. Accurate and timely communication of expectations, requirements, and status helps streamline maintenance and invoicing.

5. Upgrade Equipment and Assets

More advanced technology — from LED light bulbs to more efficient HVAC systems — has led to more energy-efficient facilities. Not surprisingly, HVAC use is often the number one contributor to a facility’s overall energy consumption. By upgrading HVAC units, companies can see a dramatic decrease in their overhead costs. The same can be said for LEDs. By replacing other types of lighting with LEDs, companies can enjoy both the lower costs and the longer life attributed to LEDs. Similarly, upgrading old production machinery can have a profound impact on energy consumption and overall manufacturing throughput as well.

When compared to the actual production processes, facility management doesn’t always get the attention it deserves, despite the profound impact it can have on a company’s productivity and profits. However, by following the tips above, companies can make significant improvements to their facility management operations. Contact a Xometry expert today to discuss how we can assist you with managing your facilities.

Xomety X
Team Xometry
This article was written by various Xometry contributors. Xometry is a leading resource on manufacturing with CNC machining, sheet metal fabrication, 3D printing, injection molding, urethane casting, and more.

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