WF 2012

Workplace Futures 2012: New needs. New solutions?

Applying its unique triple focus on the current situation, emerging trends and future opportunities, this year's Workplace Futures conference produced a series of calls for action across a range of issue areas.

Under the theme ‘new needs; new solutions?’, the conference programme was shaped around some of the central challenges facing UK facilities management as it begins to reach some maturity. The theme was summarised on the Workplace Futures website this way:

FM is a business discipline and a vast service industry. It is a simple service delivery requirement and a mission-critical support operation. Given that vast range, what does the future hold – more of the same? Or something quite different? Is FM ready to face up to the big challenges and define its own future?

A carefully selected expert panel shared their own experiences, views and insights on a range of topics around this. Speakers and their themes included:

• Ant Wilson, Sustainability Director, AECOM, on the complex journey towards sustainability characterised by changing programmes and moving targets

• Dave Wilson, Director, Agents4RM, on the need to do more with less and the dangers of limiting out thinking

• Krista Lyndsay, Workplace Practice Leader EMEA, Gensler, on the major impacts shaping the workplace and the importance of knowing when and how to act

• Clare Hawkins, Senior Energy Manager, EMCOR, on the need to get started and some real examples of how much can be achieved

• Vivek Madan, Partner, OC&C Strategy Consultants, on understanding that marketplace changes are here to stay and what that means for business strategy

• Graeme Hughes, Chief Executive, Innovise, on aligning technology solutions with real needs and making the implementation work

• Barry Varcoe, Global Head of CRE & FM, Zurich Financial Services, on understanding that outcomes – especially on people – are the true focus for successful FM

• Chris Kane, Head of Workplace, BBC, on assessing genuine space needs, defining an effective strategy and achieving top-tier management buy-in

• Andrew Price, Group Senior Vice President, and Peter Ankerstjerne, Group Marketing Director, ISS, on driving value, not just cost – and learning to make the argument

• John Telling, Group Corporate Affairs Director, MITIE, on delivering brand and positioning success by defining your strategy and sticking with it

• Katie King, Managing Director, Zoodikers Consulting, on the social media landscape and its potential for effective marketing and communication

• Lucy Jeynes, Managing Director, Larch Consulting, on bridging the communication gaps between buyers and suppliers.

• David Purdy, Director, Energy Efficiency Deployment Office, DECC, on the Green Deal and other current government policies and plans for energy use in existing buildings.

The conference was adeptly chaired by Martin Pickard, Principal of FM Guru. Summing up the day, Pickard said: “UK facilities management has had a ‘good’ recession in that it has come through the past several years in considerably better shape than many other business sectors. But it’s a new environment now, and we have to move forward in response. We must embrace change and find ways to respond positively and effectively. If we can do that, the future is bright.”

Special thanks to our sponsors for a highly successful Workplace Futures 2012:

Cofely FM

FM Guru

Service Works Group
Reliance FM

Sodexo Property Solutions