The issue

When the topic of water is brought up countries such as Australia or Dubai come to mind, areas which experience high temperatures with little rain fall during the summer seasons. It is often assumed that the UK as a water locked island where it is known for its constant rain has enough water, but this is not the case. The SMFI was founded in 2012 and annually assesses FM providers on their integration of sustainability into their strategy, operations and supply chain.  Since it’s inception water has been one of the lowest scoring criteria from these assessments. Unlike carbon, energy and waste, it is often overlooked as an opportunity for reducing negative environmental impacts.

In a recent webinar delivered jointly between The SFMI and Methven UK we started to build up a picture of risks, challenges and solutions of water management in the UK.

Over the last 50 years rainfall has not changed in the UK but the population growth has. As a result of this, the water stressed areas of the UK have grown and spread.  In the 1950s the UK’s population was 50.6 million people. This has now increased to 68.2 million, an annual growth rate of 0.43%[i], but the amount of water available has not changed. An increase in population density has resulted in less water being available per capita. In addition to this, the amount water individuals consume has increased from 85 litres per day per person 150 litres (2020) and this number is still rising[ii]. This increase in consumption coupled with limited resources has led to an increase in water stressed areas around the UK. Despite this, many people, companies and the government continue to underestimate water issues in the UK.

One of a major issue surrounding water in the UK is leakage. A large proportion of water usage is lost through leakage, with more than 20% of firms confirming they have had a leak at their site [iii]. FM companies deal with and manage leaks whenever they occur on their sites, however these leaks are costly in time, money and resources, thus have a negative impact on the business.

Chris Billingham from Methven UK states – Large businesses are at greater risk from having to stop operations because of a problem with their water supply [iv]. Without functioning toilets and washrooms you are not legally allowed to continue your operations. This has a direct financial impact on a business which is clear to calculate. Leakages can not only impact business operations but also have a direct financial cost on the business as well, due to being often overlooked water is not often recorded and therefore cannot be easily financially calculated as a loss of resource. Only 46% of large firms and 33% of SMEs track their water usage. With non-households accounting for 30 % of the UK water usage this is very low.

Furthermore, there is growth in interest in ESG targets and data collection however the data being provided on water usage and consumption is poor. This can be due to poor financial motivations, and a lack of understanding of future risk when compared to other major issues such as the looming climate crisis.

Chris Havers from The SFMI adds – Currently energy and waste have a high level of corporate attention. This is due to the long association with cost savings,  the legal and compliance frameworks that have been developed, and the links as major contributors to climate change; this motivates solution providers to report data to a higher standard. With certification schemes in the built environment we often see a lower focus on water from the operational-use category, and much higher emphasis on the construction phase, which again highlights the barriers to uptake.



Within the FM industry companies have the power and choice to make changes which will help and improve water management for their own operations and, sometimes, their clients. One of the key first steps is prioritising the problem. Water management issues have a lower financial impact but will not go away without direct action. Companies which prioritise improving water management can unveil opportunities as a business, see reductions in their carbon footprint, and also create benefits for society. By making strategic plans water can be easily managed and become less of an overlooked burden.

Another key solution to improving water management is through measurements. By using smart fixtures and fittings, water and its impact can be measured and financially calculated; consequently, companies can benefit from improved efficiencies.  By making water measurable the allocation of financial impact becomes easier and enables the business case of water to be made in a simpler and more efficient way. As a result, businesses will be able to push through water change with less opposition. In addition, smart fixtures and fittings also provide feedback and can offer suggestions on reducing waste, Methven UK case studies have found that urinal flushing can be limited whilst still providing he same quality of service. By setting a urinal to only flush after so many uses. This lowers water waste and focuses on using water when needed not just on autonomous schedule. Studies have shown that smart fixtures and fittings saved 85,170 litres through optimising flush duration and shutting off when not in use[v].

In addition, the use of smart fixtures and fittings also enables responsive communications Methven case study “Charter Hall, NSW Australia” found that by using these communications waste was lowered by 18%. Furthermore, it found that this could also be used to prompt better behaviour from employees, for example by communicating how long people wash their hands their triggers people to spend more time cleaning their hands and since the pandemic we all know the value of this, with most washing their hands for 6.2 seconds they found that simple signage increased this by 7%. This helps contributes to the wellbeing and health of the employees, this is another motivator for the business.

Another way to improve water management and efficiency is to improve the washroom design and layout.  This is something to consider predesign but can be implemented during refurbishment. Design can affect water consumption and impact both the efficiency and effectiveness of water fixtures and fittings. These consumption impacts can be from increased ease of repairs but also by influencing unconscious behaviour. Methven UK discussed this citing a case study where they found that the use of urinals has a substantially lower water consumption. However, often if one urinal was being used majority of men opted to use the cubicles if in line of sight. Methven UK found that if the cubicles were around the corner that this led to an increase in using urinals despite having another one in use.  Over 381,000 litres are saved through using urinals instead of toilets[vi].


The SFMI believe that more FMs should be prioritising water management as part of their sustainability journey. With the backdrop of the growing climate crisis, the issues surrounding water will only worsen. By taking positive action now, FMs can reduce their impact and help build the reputation of the FM industry as a sustainable solutions provider. Being a responsible business requires organisations to take ownership and responsibility of their actions. With the ever-growing attention and investment in ESG, now is the time for FMs to act. Water management can be efficient and innovatively manged if truly embraced. The SMFI aims to drive thought leadership and work alongside industry leaders to discuss and further the FM industry’s sustainability standards; the topic of water management will be tackled in the upcoming March Leadership Forum, and the findings from the Forum will be published in the Spring.









Embracing Technology in the FM Sector

Technology is all around us and continues to encroach into our lives. Whether through the applications on various office appliances, voice-controlled tech at home, or the sensors used to measure and improve the space we live in. We have an enthused world where anything is possible with the use of technology. The role of technology and its disruptive influence is one of the three key themes that was identified in the RICS Responsible Business Forum. This article explores some of the challenges ahead with the impact of technology on the built environment. Is your business fully embracing technology?

Setting the Expectations

Data-enabled systems have become the standard operating approach for many.  The potential opportunities to save costs and improve the workplace are widespread. But, cutting through the sales talk and communicating the benefits to your clients or your business is tougher.

The challenge with communicating the benefits is the balance between perception and what can be delivered today – which is very much about setting expectations. There is often a need to oversell the opportunities that can be achieved or underplay the integration costs. In part, this is led by misunderstandings by leaders on the role that technology can take, and a lack of experience on the ability to deliver and achieve results from data.

Simplifying what the technology is, how it is being used and the resulting data that can be utilised is fundamental for communicating the expectations. There are also lessons that older business leaders can learn from the younger generation in technology.

Getting Technology to do what we want it to do

So, what do we want the technology to do and how will it help us? We are all still the same people, but adding layers onto needs. Technology can help this and the interface is still important. In the built environment, we use technology to:

  • optimise or reduce plant run times through AI,
  • ensure space is optimised for user comfort,
  • help teams to optimise condition-based maintenance programmes; and
  • extend asset lifetimes.

Together this has significant benefits to the energy performance of the building, employee wellbeing and cost savings.

However, over-reliance on technology can mean we lose the ability to communicate with each other. People skills are vital in the FM sector, but with technology becoming the interface instead of the person, it promotes small changes in behaviour. For example, leaving a message instruction to another to close off an issue rather than seeing a problem through to the end. This encourages a loss of accountability for activities along with the loss of team working.

Rise of the Data Analyst in the Responsible Business

Technology can enable FM to be more customer-focused, but its advance requires new skills. For example, the ability to analyse the data that is being generated. Whilst AI tools are available, the dynamic approach of most organisations will require individuals who understand the data to translate it to a people/ business perspective.

Not only are employee skills sets changing, but the requirements on business is changing too. The level of data captured increasingly infringes on personal information. Therefore, disclosure and openness about what data is held is critical. Gaining confidence from workers on this subject will require communicating the reasons why data is held, and the benefits of holding the data. There will be kickback to this, and the use of opt-outs will help to provide a mechanism to act on this.

We are moving into a sphere where organisations are challenged about what they stand for. It is no longer about money, but increasingly about purpose, transparency and values. Those entering the workforce want to work for organisations that share their beliefs, which are becoming more altruistic. Commercials are good and an absolute necessity, but so too are the ethics – how do we get this mindset through to the FM sector?

Integrating Technology into FM

This provides a very different role for FM moving forwards. A role where technology is integrated into the service, and key skills revolve around customer service and data analytics. But being mindful of the disruptive influences that could be lurking on the horizon. Improvements in technology could easily lead to the ‘uberisation‘ of standard services – particularly maintenance and hospitality functions. Has the industry considered this though?

With new technology part and parcel of modern life, it is illogical for the FM sector not to embrace it. However, the integration of technology through the lens of a responsible business is necessary. Weighing the balance of environmental improvements with social and Governance costs is fundamental. Look out for the release of the RICS Responsible Business Leaders Forum Report at the end of the Summer 2019. We delve into these challenges further as we seek solutions for the sector.

For more information on the RICS Responsible Business Forum please visit the RICS website
Sunil Shah, Chair RICS Responsible Business Forum and Managing Director, Acclaro Advisory.

Implementing meaningful sustainability

Implementing meaningful responsible business attributes within the built environment requires engagement of all levels of the chain – the developer, constructor and operators of facilities. Increasing complexities of roles and knowledge involved means this is no longer possible through a single body or simplified framework across the property lifecycle.

Acclaro Advisory and the SFMI (Sustainable Facilities Management Index) are delighted to be a major contributor to a collaborative approach in partnership with RICS. The aim is to create the new model necessary to transfer knowledge of sustainability through the property lifecycle. Sunil Shah, MD of Acclaro Advisory will be chairing a series of discussions across the globe, with the SFMI team developing and building upon the necessary discussions to develop a single approach for the industry.


For a long time, collaboration has been key for organisations to deliver sustainability; it has been the subject of many reviews within the property sector from the Latham Review in 1994 through to the present discussions from the Hackett Review. We have experienced a rise in dialogue develop between a client and their major suppliers, together with a governance system between the two stakeholders. Much of this is measured in more complex projects to improve performance and outcomes – great news for the parties involved!

Professional bodies, on the other hand, are showing a different approach to advancing the sustainability agenda. An increasing number of groups are jostling for position and funding. They are focussing on what separates or differentiates themselves from their peers. However this doesn’t promote a sector or an industry in a cohesive way, nor does it show leadership internally or externally. Discussions are blighted by arguments over semantics (the most recent is that experienced on the definition of Social Value), and with so many opinions there is little room to tackle key areas that would give consistency and a common approach for the good of the sector.

What we need is a more joined up structure

RICS have been taking a lead on one area related to Responsible Business. As the appointed Chair of the Forum, I (and our partners at RICS) see the importance of collaboration across the delivery lifecycle for two main reasons. First, is to ensure that as a collective we are working together and that multiple points will drive changes in behaviour and the need to comply. Secondly, simply, is that no organisation knows everything and that to build a practical response spreading over the lifecycle of a property requires a number of actors knitting their specialisms together.

The journey that we have been on in the sustainability sphere has promoted environmental specialisms including energy, waste and water, largely because they were easy to measure and understand. Social aspects have been considered by organisations for a long time, slowly becoming more widespread. For example, it formed a fundamental part of the London Olympics legacy programme.

In fact, volunteering and philanthropy have been easy wins for businesses to prove corporate responsibility with minimal strategic considerations. However, we haven’t had a structured approach. Since 2010, there has been a step change in the role of society within the sustainability framework.

Regulation in supply chain management (through Modern Slavery and Social Value ), the conceptualisation of wellbeing (through mental health awareness and workplace productivity), and increased competition for talent have driven employee development up the agenda.

Looking into the future, we can see the increasing trajectory of societal and community needs as part of the built environment dovetailed into environmental requirements. Assessments of place and occupier services will be based upon the provision of these services and engagement with the community to drive improved satisfaction, a safer environment and a location where people want to work.

Technology will play a significant role in this. The deployment of technology is driving the collection and use of data, but we have yet to answer the question of who owns this data. We are entering into space where knowledge is being captured that can denote the behavioural characteristics of individuals to help provide a tailored working environment. Should individuals be made aware of the data held and how it is used? Protocols are necessary –technology and data are a vital part of our necessary progress. – but a negative perception can damage the brand of an organisation quickly.

The Solution – The Responsible Business Forum

So, RICS has been working with Acclaro Advisory, UKGBC, Arup, Business Services Association and others to capture insight and identify solutions required for a responsible business to operate property assets. This work aims to influence the corporate culture, operational level and interaction with the supply chain to ensure the long-term sustainability of the built environment. See here our opening discussion in the UK, and the finding that we took home from a business leaders roundtable event.

Utilising partners, frameworks, tools and events from across the world, we will look to capture the knowledge, benefits, challenges and risks that will affect the management of property and integrate responsible business practices that will improve society and the environment that we live in.

RICS is calling on strategic thinkers and decision makers across the supply chain who have a desire to embed responsible corporate values in their business, to join the conversation. Together we can deal with challenges and look to shape clear solutions and drive responsible business leadership.

Visit the RICS website and download the RICS Responsible Business Leaders Forum summary report to gain further insight
To get involved in these discussions and for further information on what RICS is doing in this area, contact us or get in touch with Ana Bajri, Property Standards Project Manager, RICS 

Article Image : RICS


It is a year since the collapse of Carillion and we have accepted that the facilities management side of their business was not the result of the failure. Important lessons have been learnt from the downfall and progress made by both the Government and the industry towards rectifying problems. This article looks at a number of these areas from the perspective of supplier activities and gives an insight into how the Sustainable Facilities Management Index (SFMI)  can help you to manage these activities.


One area of real change has been the management of suppliers. In the past, suppliers were used as an extension of the balance sheet to delay or avoid payments should cash flow get into difficulty. As a result, many suppliers have gone into administration, and many more livelihoods have been impacted. Suppliers have recognised the high risks of relying on a single client and vice versa.

The Government is asking suppliers to draw up ‘living wills’ to protect against supply chain risk. The Sustainable Facilities Management Index (SFMI) looks to incorporate these changes into the relevant sections of the assessment to understand how they are being delivered with an ongoing low margin model. The SFMI continues to drive best practice across all aspects of sustainability to the industry and sees these issues as a method to improve the reputation of outsourcing tarnished by bad practices.


Greater responsibility is being mandated to clients through regulation such as Modern Slavery Act and the Social Value Act. This is driving a different conversation for both clients and suppliers.  In particular, the role of social value has significantly increased as we look for different metrics to the simple financial ones to base decisions on.

Clients need to understand which social and environmental improvements are necessary and which suppliers can be engaged to help deliver them. This will require a mapping exercise to understand the local community needs. These needs can be aligned with the values of the organisation to develop a longer-term programme.


Developing a deeper relationship with suppliers is necessary to enable two-way dialogue, transfer of knowledge and the understanding of what true value and innovation can be achieved. The SFMI has supported several supplier workshop programmes to help critical suppliers understand the main environmental and social impacts and to foster a dialogue to deliver shared services.

These themes play a fundamental role in a responsible business approach. The SFMI is driving this approach in FM – there is a long way to go, but there are some real cases of best practice out there to learn from. You can read the latest reports and Research from the SFMI here.

If you are an FM service provider, being part of the SFMI in 2019 will give your company the pathway it needs to be managing and implementing key issues that a responsible business needs to address.

Clients that procure FM services can also benefit from the SFMI. Look out for our tools that you can use to quickly assess if your FM is providing real long-term value by managing environmental and social issues responsibly for you.

Your Sustainability Shopping List

We are almost at the end January and there is already a growing list of activities and aspirations for the proactive Sustainability Manager in 2019. It’s now time to focus on the priorities of a Sustainability Manager.

If you are looking for inspiration, and want to freshen up the tired strategy from previous years, read on. Before reading Acclaro’s top 5 sustainability priorities, we should remind you that underpinning all of these areas is the need for good quality data to be captured and interpreted. Without which little can be achieved.

1. Developing a Social Value Approach

Globalisation offers many positives, but the drive for cheaper goods and services has affected not only, supply chains but also the communities that companies work within.

Social Value is currently measured on the value and impact of the corporate, rather than the benefit derived by the community. Some are scrambling to measure a monetary value. Assessing the benefits that supply chains can bring, or engaging with communities we operate within, is surely the first logical step.

We suggest, take a step back. The first stage is to understand what already takes place across the business coupled with assessing the needs of the community in which you operate, (or serve if you are a public-sector body). Capturing this information will help to develop a cohesive programme of engagement. This can be structurally managed across internal, supply chain and community programmes. There are many benefits to gain from a social value programme. This includes an increasing number of tenders requiring some form of disclosure of the value you create, so now is the time assess what your organisation can bring to society.

2. More accurate GHG Supply Chain Emissions

The reporting of greenhouse gases provides an ever-greater understanding of how our organisations impact climate change. However, when it comes to affecting change, it can be difficult to understand which areas of a business to target that will yield the most effective results. Carbon emissions from the supply chain is being increasingly scrutinised. Therefore, understanding these burdens and your ability to target them effectively is critical.

Using economic models based on annually updated economic data can map supply chains and associated emissions. The data from industrial Supply and Use tables is combined with emissions factors to create a model that maps national emissions linked with the spend of an organisation. This maps the entire organisations economy using matrix algebra to link environmental and economic data. Save yourself time and move away from the bottom up approach that sees us plot only a small proportion of supply chain emissions very inaccurately. There are other ways of doing it, and you can have a greater impact on climate targets by using correct data to being with.

3. Energy Audits and Reporting

Carbon emissions and energy consumption remain some of the biggest risks and contributors to climate change. The move towards nearly zero carbon buildings is accelerating with standards being developed as part of the wedges associated with science based targets.

The first stage should always be to minimise emissions and the energy being consumed through an effective understanding of how and why energy is used the way it is. Regulations are asking for public disclosure allowing for greater scrutiny and the need for verified and accurate information to be disclosed.

Significant quantities of information exist, but translating this into usable data and tangible outcomes from dynamic systems is the challenge – but can yield significant savings in excess of 15% energy reduction.

4. Environmental Risk Management

Whilst often initiated and implemented as part of management systems, the recent driver for climate and biodiversity related risk evaluation has come from the investor community. The premise is simple and equates to understanding the environment’s impact on you. These disclosures are targeted at mainstream investors and are intended to help them assess whether climate risk is appropriately priced in to their valuation of your company, enabling investors to make more informed decisions

Techniques and approaches for the scenario testing are still in development, but this year will see an increase in the understanding of the risks and early stages of validating the implications. Early movers will benefit from the opportunities available.

5. Building a Responsible Business Culture

Finally, this is the piece that joins the dots together. Business culture is changing and the expectations of new employees and our major consumers are dictating different terms – we now have a language of Purpose.

Responding to the societal pressures, the increased level of data, reporting pressures and investor requirements will necessitate a different response from organisations. And that culture needs to extend beyond the four walls of the sustainability team, into business and towards supplier management and sales programmes.

This is a long journey, that connects together forward risks, social benefits and environmental impacts, a develops a long-term strategy. Ultimately it will mainstream your role, but a concept we need to grapple with is, will it make it redundant? In time, perhaps some day-to-day operational parts. But there will always a need for strategic thinking and forward planning.

Acclaro Advisory wishes you a belated Happy New Year, and we hope to see you at many an event to discuss the direction you are taking for a sustainable future.

Good luck with putting  your priorities as a Sustainability Manager into action.

Joining the Sustainable Facilities Management Index (SFMI) a year ago has given me some unique insight which I hadn’t appreciated before. The Facilities Management (FM) holds great potential to influence the sustainability agenda. There are shining examples of sustainable FM and the SFMI celebrates these in our awards. However, there is a lot of work to be done for many others. Investors, clients, and internal business leaders can all drive the sustainability agenda in FM outsourcing, and now is the time to start.

Corporate Sustainability reporting in outsourced services

In my previous life in sustainability reporting, I admit, I had over-looked the FM sector (as many do). I found that the classic outsourcing corporation did not account for impact within the contracts they deliver. The focus would be on the scope 1 and 2 measurement approach. This boundary-wall approach meant that the measured impacts are minimal and based mainly on office locations. Alongside this, when a major business with outsourcing services responds to a corporate reporting initiative, they would neglect the FM side of this integrated business. Because it would be compared to the heavy industry component (for example) the construction arm. Therefore, the FM business will often fall through the cracks of corporate non-financial reporting, and non-financial risk identification. This historic approach means that many FM businesses have fallen behind other industries in their ability manage sustainability. Times are now changing, and demand for corporate responsibility is rising, so areas for influence are increasing.

So there’s a gap?

There is indeed a gap! An FM manages facilities on behalf of their clients. but are not taking responsibility for reporting on non-financial risk. On the flip-side the client may not be incorporating the FM provider into their sustainability strategy and processes. Meaning a gap in the ability to achieve sustainability targets and running buildings / operations in line with those targets. The gap impacts energy targets at a country and global level, and does not address climate change and energy security. Many do not incorporate the social challenges in the corporation either. For example, employee health and well-being may not be linked through the Facilities management team. Also, there are unrealised savings to be made in energy efficiency and other resource efficiency. The Facilities manager is a problem solver and a pragmatic one at that. They are perfectly positioned to fill these gaps, if they are unleashed and have the resource!

What’s been causing the gap? – A concern for investors and clients

I came into this sector during what can only seem like a dark age in FM. On a media headline level, it seems that in the last few years all hell is breaking loose in the outsourcing sector.  Major outsourcing business have seen share drops (Interserve among a few) and profit warnings, and we have witnessed the collapse of Carillon which brought major clean-up costs to the public purse – one third of its revenue (£1.7bn) came from public FM contracts. Also to private suppliers who will never get paid (there were thousands of them). On top of this, there have also been scandals from the running of the UK’s HM prison’s through G4S, and another major security-based outsourcer has seen regular negative coverage. “So there is a lot of bad press in FM. – What’s your link”, I hear you ask?

I am not naive to think that poor environmental / social management is the cause of these issues. Ultimately, it boils down to the economics of outsourcing. The public and private sector clients decide to outsource services because they want to save money and concentrate on their own business. By outsourcing to a specialist provider, they aim to make efficiency savings under those who do this for a living, and who can incorporate economies of scale.

However, the overwhelming drive to make short-term savings causes a multitude of risk:

  • instability,
  • excessive transfer of risk,
  • low unsustainable profit margins, and
  • a cost focused model that includes many contractual performance stipulations that are weighted in the clients favour which aim to refund money.

It’s a multi-pronged attack on the concept of a sustainable business model. Multiple players are driving this scenario:

1. the customer who wants the cheapest outsourcer at whatever cost. (The UK Government found itself guilty of this after the Carillon inquiry; and

2. The outsourcer whose business model is to undercut the opposition with the aim of rapid market expansion. (We’ve seen how the Carillon model ends up for stakeholders).

So what’s the correlation between profit warnings, the SFMI and E,S,G management?

The “race to the bottom line” is a cause of major systemic issues. Economic sustainability is realistically the bedrock that can drive environmental and social sustainability. What we are seeing at the SFMI is; once those companies fall into this “race to the bottom line” culture, they will start to peel back on their ability to manage sustainability:

  • Reduced corporate Governance,
  • Lack of internal environmental and social impact management, and
  • lack of implementing social value and environmental services into client contracts.

What is left is a stripped back and potentially loss making service with higher risk. By not integrating sustainability into an FM model, it removes them from being part of the solution towards major issues such as climate change. This means a higher risk for investors and all other stakeholders being part of the unsustainable business model. I wouldn’t want to be the supplier of unsustainable business, would you?

Therefore, at the SFMI, we believe that ESG performance of the outsourcer can act as a proxy warning for poor business management.

This year we have seen a number of FM’s fall back in their sustainable FM performance. This simple chart shows 7 large FM providers have dropped from a silver performance level to a bronze (according to the SFMI annual assessment. We are seeing the beginning of a two tiered FM system. Sustainable value added companies (Platinum, gold and silver), and bare basics (Bronze and assessed).

The change of sustainability performance bands for large FM providers

How can the SFMI be used to flag this?

Showing the historic ESG performance based on public data for Carillion against the SFMI criteria

For 6 years the SFMI has been auditing and guiding FM providers so they improve their in-house corporate responsibility agendas, AND (very importantly) to implement sustainability management into their clients contracts. We score companies across a range of 23 topics of sustainability stretching from environmental, social and governance issues against a range of evidence presented. No evidence = no score. Our approach separates the marketing talk from the action.

Therefore, if we start to see FM providers drop in their sustainability performance from year to year, this should raise red flags for those clients and investors who are stakeholders of the company. A provider’s ESG performance can correlate towards the business model  taken by an FM provider. By using an audit based approach rather than a self-reporting approach, we can separate the marketeers from the doers.

Who can get involved, and how?

The SFMI is an assessment for FM providers, however, there are plenty of stakeholders that gain from selecting a sustainable FM business as part of the SFMI.

Clients – Clients who haven’t made the link between their FM and their sustainability goals are missing a trick. Also, if you are selecting your FM contract on cost alone, then you are part of the problem. Using the SFMI is your way of integrating your sustainability goals with your facilities operations, and gaining more value in the long term. Get in touch to speak with us further.

Investors – Seeking to understand the risk in your portfolio is fundamental. The SFMI has been developing a historic database of scoring information that can aid investors in risk management. We do not count carbon, or quantities of water used – We score processes, initiatives and outcomes and how they are implemented in a company and its contracts. This is a unique approach.

FM business leaders – Differentiate your business from the race to the bottom culture. Show your stakeholders you offer value added sustainable FM, with an SFMI audit. By opening your company to a transparent audit against our tried and tested criteria of sustainability, you will gain the path forward. Be a pack leader, not a pack chaser.

A responsible business approach will give long term value to all stakeholders involved.

Contact us today to discuss how we can help you support@SFMI.UK

On the 8th November, the Sustainable Facilities Management Index released its annual insight into the state of sustainable facilities management in the UK. After a summer of assessing 26 major UK FM’s against a tried and tested sustainability criteria, we can offer a look at the 2018 leaders, and our look at the market.

If you missed the event, sign up for our webinar on the 12th December. The webinar highlights key parts of the report, and gives three top rated businesses the chance to tell us how they have developed a sustainable facilities management approach, and the challenges faced to get there.

State of the Market round-up

Two tiered FM – separating those who add value

The SFMI predicts that the FM market is developing into a two-tiered hierarchy.

  1. A top tier of businesses able to evidence successful implementation of environmental, social and governance added value into their corporate management and contractual approach.  The companies achieving the top tier scores are overall winners; Engie, along with fellow leaders Vinci Facilities and Skanska. Then Bouygues, BAM FM, Sodexo and Galliford Try all performing well and looking to gain ground on the leaders.
  2. A second (larger) tier lacking in disclosure and evidence showing how they manage sustainability. They show varying signs of being part of the ‘race to the bottom line’ approach. Many business that offer FM are part of a diversified wider company. The SFMI always focuses on the FM division of the business rather than this wider corporate group. Therefore, an FM business cannot rest on the laurels of corporate wider programme to see them to higher scores.

The SFMI approach shows a need for higher transparency in the FM sector. It also benefits the client interest who are seeking added sustainability value. The SFMI cuts through smooth marketing talk and requires evidence to back-up claims around social value and environmental management.

Sign up for our webinar for insight into what a top tier company does, and how they do it.

Red Flags

Page nine in the report draws comparisons and the concerns about the sector in relation to Carillion’s score from 2013 and the risk of a two tiered market. While the Carillion collapse was not isolated to sustainability and was a complex issue, we can draw signals from the Carillion approach to sustainability over the years which acts as a proxy for the long-term strategy of a business.  The SFMI will delve further into this on our webinar on the 12th, and now we have 6 years of data, we will look to see how data can portray red flags in the future.

Partnerships announced

The SFMI announced two strategic partnerships at its launch event. Working with RICS, the SFMI will play a key role in the establishment of a global approach to responsible business management in FM and the supply chain. This role comes in the form of a series of global forums called the RICS Responsible Business Leaders Forum. The forums will be Chaired by Acclaro Advisory MD, Sunil Shah, and the SFMI is tasked with analysing and compiling the findings from the series of events into a report for RICS. This will be used to build the case for a global approach to Responsible business management in the built environment.

Our second partnerships works on a practical level for the companies taking part in the SFMI. Working with Ditto Sustainability  will help to deliver improvements through three means:

1. Utilise Ditto’s experience with technology, software and data handling to improve the annual assessment approach that we take.

2. Potentially integrate an improved bench-marking approach through technology

3. Provide access to interactive e-learning tools so business can cultivate and integrate sustainability across all levels.

Also, to look out for

Assessed companies will soon receive their scorecards, and partners will be setting up their feedback presentations for the upcoming months – these presentations are a chance for the board room to gain exposure into the feedback that was gained from the audits, and the potential for improvement in key areas of sustainability.

Consultation – The SFMI seeks to improve its approach and is conducting consultations with interested stakeholders. Our discussion will give insight and input into improvements to our offering. Get in touch to setup a call.

2019 partnership offers and pricing will be available soon – contact us for further information.