How Small Businesses Can Benefit From Using Facility Management Tools

It’s well-known that many enterprises and large organisations benefit from using computer-aided facility management (CAFM) tools, but there are many advantages to small businesses using digitised facility solutions too.

The world of work is changing faster than ever. To thrive, businesses of all sizes need to be ready to adapt while sustaining growth. For larger organisations, this can mean integrating services, using data-driven processes, or adapting to a more remote workforce. In particular, there’s a rising trend for outsourcing. The global market for outsourced facilities management is expected to be valued at $1trillion by 2025.

For SMBs and small business owners, adapting businesses to include integrated CAFM or outsourcing support may not feature in a 5-year plan. But, there are several ways that facility management tools can support smaller organisations. These include helping to reach annual KPI’s, scaling up, and future-proofing services to ensure businesses stay flexible to the changing needs of the workforce.

How Can CAFM Tools Help Small Businesses?

Facility management is an essential function in the workplace of every organisation. From managing people to processes and responding to safety regulations, facility management ensures staff remain safe, comfortable, and able to perform their jobs to a high standard.

In a small business, responsibility for facilities may rest with office managers or a designated team member. But, what about moving to the next stage of growth? Acquiring customers or increasing year-on-year revenues require careful planning and well-devised processes. By using the right tools to manage facility processes, small businesses can break even quicker and accelerate growth.

So, which tools are best? Well, that depends on the current stage of a business. Small businesses should consider:

  • What budgets are available?
  • How complex are business operations and processes?
  • How fast do they need to turn things around?
  • Are they able to work with several third-party suppliers?

With outsourcing becoming more commonplace for businesses, it may be worth considering how a third-party supplier could benefit an SMB’s facility management processes. For instance, do they work in a fast-paced industry that requires fast response rates? Is their area of work specialised or in need of an expert view? If so, outsourcing can drive efficiency in various processes.

Why do small businesses outsource their facilities management processes
Survey report data from Clutch, 2019

If running facility processes in-house makes more sense, using Facilities Management Software for small businesses may be the answer. It provides various benefits, including:

Maximising Space

For a business to achieve its goals, it needs to utilise the right amount of space. Using Facilities Management Software will ensure the space available to small businesses is used purposeful. If buildings have a lease, facilities management tools ensure businesses generate revenue from the available space while letting nothing go to waste.

Co-Ordinating Activity

Small business owners on;t have the capacity to do everything on their own, so they need to delegate. That may mean several team members running their facilities. To keep everyone on track, managers need a centralised platform to hold the right data that everyone can access. Keeping data centralised also means each delegate can run the right processes with efficiency, without repeating work or overlooking key information.

Enabling Small Business Growth

Keeping costs low will help to promote growth. Using a tool to plan how space and assets are managed can speed up this process. Using Facilities Management Software for small businesses or outsourcing processes will better enable the monitoring of space and assets, making it easier to move on to the next stage of development.

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Key Facilities Management Features That Small Businesses Need

When it comes to choosing the best options for delivering facilities services, whether in-house or outsourcing, cost is a major factor to consider. That means businesses will need to review and compare a range of metrics to make sure investments align with business goals and equate to a profitable ROI.

The right SMB facilities management tool will save business owners time and money by organising both their hard and soft FM services in one central system. Some of the key CAFM features that can benefit small businesses include:

Tracking Assets in Real-Time

FM tools enable businesses to access real-time data using tracking technology. With closer monitoring of assets, managers can react to needs as soon as they arise. This includes equipment repairs, premises maintenance, and adjustments to energy supplies.

Recording Costs

Recording expenses such as ground maintenance or energy bills is easier, which helps to keep running costs to a minimum. As well as helping to reduce unnecessary spending and increase your ability to grow.

Scheduling Maintenance

Tracking the life cycle of facility assets is easier, too. CAFM tools enable small business owners to take a planned preventative maintenance (PPM) approach to scheduling repairs. Centralising processes also helps to replace assets quickly and avoid interruption to business activity.

When Should Small Businesses Introduce Facility Management Tools?

Knowing when to take the next step in the best interest of business operations depends on having the right knowledge, advice, and business acumen. But, there are also clues that can indicate when a small business should consider investing in facilities management tools. Such as:

Maintenance Tasks Aren’t Completed

Letting a few processes slip here and there is inevitable, but if regular maintenance is beginning to pile up then businesses need to address the problem fast. If staff are unable to access the tools or equipment they need because of delays, this could hinder their morale and business productivity.

Teams Are Struggling to Track Facilty Assets

If a business is planning on scaling, using manual processes instead of software to track facility assets can leave them struggling to stay on top of things. It’s important that SMBs have an asset register, are able to know the exact location of an asset, and know the current conditions of their assets.

Safety Concerns Have Been Raised

It’s a legal responsibility to ensure a workplace meets the requirements of the health and safety act, not to mention a moral obligation to their staff.

Maintenance Costs Are Increasing

If businesses are noticing increased costs each year, they need to quickly get a handle on what’s causing it. Equipment may be under-utilised, inventory may be wasted, or space may not be being used to its full capacity. Wasting money on facilities will set businesses back and prevent them from making the gains they need to expand.

How Can CAFM Tools Help Small Businesses?

For SMBs and small business owners, making the best use of available opportunities is a key objective. To break even sooner rather than later, every penny spent should plan for a return that supports revenue growth. Where facilities management remains an inevitable part of every small and mid-sized business, making good decisions early on will prevent businesses from running into problems that could prove costly, or even detrimental to future trade.

Facilities Management Software for small businesses, such as CAFM tools, will help to lay a strong foundation for the future and support strong ROI’s that enable businesses to grow.