How Small Businesses Can Benefit from using a Facility Management Tool
It’s well-known that many enterprises and large organisations benefit from using facility management (FM) tools, but there are many advantages to small businesses using FM solutions too.
The world of work is changing faster than ever. To thrive, businesses of all sizes need to be ready to adapt while they sustain planned 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. With the global market for outsourced facilities management expected to be valued at $1trillion by 2025.
For SMBs and small business owners, adapting your business to include integrated FM or outsourcing support may not feature in your 5-year plan. But, there are several ways that facility management tools can support small businesses and startups. 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.
In this article, we’ll outline how SMBs can benefit from FM tools, which features will help the most, and at what stage you should consider implementing facilities management software for small businesses. We’ll cover:
How can FM tools help small businesses?
Facility management is an essential function in the workplace of every organisation. Covering a diverse set of requirements—from managing people to processes, and responding to emergencies—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 your office manager or a 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 which stage your business is currently at. But, to help you decide, it’s worth considering the following:
- What budgets are available?
- How complex are your business operations and processes?
- How fast do you need to turn things around?
- Are you 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 your FM processes. For instance, do you work in a fast-paced industry that requires fast response rates? Is your area of work specialised or in need of an expert view? If so, outsourcing can drive efficiency in your processes.
If running your facilities processes in-house makes more sense, using facilities management software for small businesses can help. To outline the benefits, we’ve listed some of the ways that FM tools can be beneficial to SMB’s:
For your business to achieve its goals, you need to use the right amount of space. Using facilities management software will ensure the space you use is purposeful. If you take on a lease, facilities management tools ensure you generate revenue from the available space while letting nothing go to waste.
You can’t do everything on your own as a small business owner, so you’ll need to delegate. That may mean several team members running your facilities. To keep everyone on track, you’ll 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.
Enables small business growth
Keeping costs low will help to promote growth. Using a tool to plan how you use space and manage your assets can speed up this process. Using facilities management software for small businesses or outsourcing your processes will better enable the monitoring of space and assets, making it easier to move on to the next stage of development.
Which features of facilities management software for small businesses are the most beneficial?
When it comes to choosing what’s best for your business—delivering facilities services in-house or outsourcing your processes—cost is a major factor. Remember, that your time is also a cost. That means you’ll need to review and compare a range of metrics to make sure your investment aligns with the goals of the business and equates to a profitable ROI.
Facilities management software for small businesses will save you time and money by organising both your hard and soft FM services in one central system. Some of the key features that can benefit SMBs include:
Tracking assets in real-time
FM tools enable you to access real-time data using tracking technology. With closer monitoring of assets, you can respond to needs as they arise. Including equipment repairs, premises maintenance, and adjustments to energy supplies.
Recording expenses such as ground maintenance or energy bills is easier, which helps to keep running costs to a minimum, reduce unnecessary spending, and increase your ability to grow.
Tracking the life cycle of your facility assets is easier too. Facilities software enables small business owners to take a preventative 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 your business 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:
1. 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 you’ll 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.
2. You’re struggling to track your assets
How does your asset register look? Are you able to declare your position on assets when asked? Do you know the current condition of all your assets? If you’re planning on scaling, using manual processes instead of software to track your assets will leave you struggling to stay on top of things.
3. Safety concerns have been raised
It’s a legal responsibility to ensure your workplace meets the requirements of the health and safety act, not to mention a moral obligation to your staff. With the coronavirus continuing to disrupt lives, making use of software to monitor staff activity will help protect the future of your business.
4. Maintenance costs are increasing
If you’re noticing increased costs each year, it’s time to get a handle on what’s causing it. Your current equipment may be being under-utilized, your inventory may be wasteful, or space may not be being used to its full capacity. Wasting money on facilities will set your business back and prevent you from making the gains you need to expand.
How can FM 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 your business 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 your business to grow.
To help you decide what’s best for your business needs, you’ll find further detail in our buyer’s guide to facilities management software.