The outlook is bright for the field of facility management. Comprised of many different job titles in a variety of industries, the field is projected to grow 12 percent from 2012 to 2022. New technology and green building initiatives are causing organizations to update or reevaluate their facilities to meet environmental regulations. Organizations are also becoming increasingly concerned with their environmental impact. Along with this, they are finding that embracing sustainability and improving energy efficiency can help reduce costs.
But what exactly does a facility manager do and why is it considered a green energy job?
It’s easiest to think of a facility manager as the conductor of an orchestra. These managers oversee the many different aspects of building management and like an orchestra conductor, ensure that all elements come together harmoniously. The day-to-day tasks of facility managers can vary from operations and maintenance to project planning and management, but overall their main duty is to make sure the facility functions effectively.
This career is considered a green energy job because facility managers are often tasked with identifying opportunities for the organization’s facility to operate more efficiently. They oversee the implementation of these improvements and also make sure buildings meet environmental regulation standards.
Since there are so many moving pieces to an orchestra, a conductor must have mastery of a number of skills to successfully do their job. The same goes for facility mangers. The following skills, identified by U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, are needed for a career in facility management.
Facility managers deal with a lot of different information and often have to use this information to inform their decisions. Analytical skills are needed to help facility managers make the most appropriate decisions based on organizational needs and budget. Individuals in this field are also charged with reviewing organizational procedures and analyzing them in order to find ways to improve efficiency.
Communication skills are useful in many fields, but in facility management it is a necessity. Facility managers must often talk with their employees and work with others to make sure the job gets done. Managers must be able to clearly explain what needs to be done and why to different people at all levels in an organization, from subordinates to executive leadership.
Facility managers are part cheerleader and part coach. They need be able to motivate, guide and coordinate between employees so strong leadership skills are a must. Those who enter this field have to manage others and coordinate with vendors while working on many different projects and tasks. Honesty, the ability to delegate, good communication, creativity and commitment are all part of being a strong leader. Having these skills is also a good way to get promoted.
A career in facility management offers you the opportunity to further develop your analytical, communication and leadership skills and knowledge. However, you may already have some these skills and likely have experience tapping into them in your work as a student or through previous employment. If you are interested in pursuing a job in this field, make sure your résumé reflects those experiences and highlights anything that showcases your experience.
Learn more about green energy jobs by exploring our Clean Jobs Index.