A webinar exploring whether facilities managers are using performance management to maximum effect has revealed that the approach is only just beginning to be recognised as a valuable part of the strategic FM function. Just 38% of the more than 300 delegates who signed up for the webinar, hosted by FM software provider Service Works Group in collaboration with the Facilities Show, believes that their organisation's approach to performance management in FM enables them to improve their supplier performance significantly.
Notably, 18% do not measure performance at all, and 8% even feel that it has had a negative effect on performance and that results have been contested by suppliers. However, the benefits of well-executed performance management could be on the horizon as 37% of webinar attendees reported that they are currently in the early stages of implementing performance management strategies and are awaiting the results.
Organisations are also changing the way they define their FM service expectation, with the trend for the output defined specification, rather than input specification, rising. 9% of delegates, polled during the webinar, use only input specs while 30% use output specifications. There are advantages and disadvantages with both methods, indicated by the fact that 61% use a combination of the two.
There is a general lack of understanding and agreement surrounding the standard measures for FM industry performance. 30% of attendees believe that service level agreement (SLA) and key performance indicator (KPI) acronyms are confusing, 14% consider that SLAs are too loosely defined, and 24% think that organisations are hampered by too many KPIs. Only 31% agree that the measurements are being broadly used as intended.
The new concept for using gain-share contracts to split the proceeds of successful business, incentivising FM suppliers to drive change on outsourced services and rewarding them based on the level of saving received by the client, has seen a reasonable industry take-up with 29% using gain-share contracts or similar and another 11% considering using them in the future.
In relation to technology in the FM environment, the growing trend for self-service was evident as confirmed by 33% of webinar attendees, although 53% are still using manual methods to manage contractor and in-house performance with only 8% using a mobile app for that purpose.
The audience polls were part of the 45-minute-long webinar hosted by Service Works and chaired by Cathy Hayward, deputy chair of the BIFM London region. It featured a panel of experts from the facilities management profession - Debra Ward, managing director for Macro; Tristam Slater, contracts and performance manager at King's College London; international FM and organisational strategist Dave Wilson; and Mark Kirkham, director of Service Works Group.