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Management And Training

Maximizing Expenditures

February 01, 2011
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The largest assets of any organization are its physical and mechanical structures.

Unfortunately, many property owners perceive maintenance as a secondary need, which simply isn''t true.

Raising the level of commitment to these physical assets is essential to achieving long-term functionality, preventing costly repairs and creating a healthy environment for tenants.

From the facility manager''s standpoint, an entire team of individuals needs to execute an effective and efficient operations plan during the operational phase of the building''s lifecycle, which normally extends over several decades.

By imparting valuable information to property owners, you can work together to coordinate and oversee the safe, secure and environmentally sound operations and upkeep of these assets in a cost-effective manner.

Maximizing Available Budgets

Often, the toughest obstacle for a facilities manager is operating on a limited budget.

By using qualified and well-trained individuals to manage, maintain and clean a building, however, you can create an optimal asset management scenario that saves money without sacrificing the lifecycle of the asset.

School districts, for example, traditionally have to work around tight budgets and, as a result, officials tend to take the asset management component out of the equation — thinking they''re saving money when they''re not.

They often eliminate facilities management expertise to lower costs, but this decision can come back to haunt them in the form of higher energy consumption, wasted spending and increased asset deterioration.

These budgetary setbacks are completely avoidable because qualified maintenance professionals can help schools in a variety of ways.

Specific examples include:

  • O,R&L achieved actual operating cost savings of $500,000 during the first six months of our contract for a client with multiple facilities on one campus as a result of re-bidding services and implementing energy cost savings measures

  • For another client, we recommended the use of a robotic floor cleaning machine for a school district, which helped eliminate a $34,000 annual salary from operating costs

  • O,R&L located $200,000 worth of paper supplies buried in school basements, distributed them to schools in the district where they were utilized and the savings were used to pay for modern custodial equipment

  • In a new high school, O,R&L tracked work orders for 90 days and found that a significant amount of repair calls were being made due to improper door function for hardware that wasn''t designed for institutional use.

It''s important to share these types of success stories with your potential clients because by understanding the long-term, tangible benefits of hiring a reputable facilities manager, they can avoid the headaches associated with saving a penny today at the expense of a dollar tomorrow.

Managing A Thorough Process

In the facilities management business, each task is equally important in creating a complete and successful maintenance management program.

For example, a janitorial services philosophy dedicated to a more thorough cleaning process and continuous improvements will have a positive impact not only on the longevity of assets, but also on the health and productivity of occupants.

At O,R&L, we cut operational costs in our clients'' buildings by an average of 15 percent to 20 percent, which is all driven by having the right technical staff to coordinate the process and train people to clean properly and use energy management systems effectively.

Our strategy: Constantly integrate new approaches to managing labor and educating occupants about energy conservation.

Taking into account the unique nature of each facility, we''re able to come up with specifications needed to maintain the building based on manufacturer''s recommendations for every element, including carpets, floors, walls, windows, doors, fabrics, heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) units and more.

Such attention to detail serves only to benefit the client, who can realize significant long-term cost savings by incorporating a high level of expertise into their facilities management process.


Robert Owens, co-founder and president of O,R&L Facility Services, has more than 22 years of experience in the real estate management and construction industries. Under his leadership, O,R&L has become an industry leader in facility management, property management and janitorial services for properties and companies.

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