Occupancy is always at the top of every facility owner’s list of priorities—keeping current clients happy while attracting new business is the key to profitability.

The key to client happiness is, in turn, a function of facility condition and overall costs. This is where facility managers and maintenance personnel come into the picture.

They are immediately responsible for addressing maintenance needs, ensuring that facilities are helping clients meet their objectives. For your typical facility, this might be where their responsibility ends: satisfying basic needs in order to retain clients that are already there.

Elite facilities, on the other hand, bring a proactive outlook to the cost equation, looking for ways to lower overall operating expenses so they can pass some of these savings to their clients. Here are three ways you can accomplish this in your facility.

+ Minimize turnaround time on maintenance requests. Before any proactive, cost-cutting measures can get underway, you’ll need to have a solid system for scheduling and managing facility services.

They only way to carve out additional time for proactive maintenance and facility upgrades is to minimize the resources typically devoted to maintenance emergencies. Clients have cut average turnaround time on maintenance requests from 4 or more days to 24 hours or less with facility management software.

With dramatically less time spent putting out fires, companies that streamline their maintenance operations with facility management software are able to perform more preventive maintenance tasks.

Most importantly, building occupants won’t have to wait as long to have their needs addressed. This has a direct impact on their overall satisfaction, making it more likely they’ll stay in your facility long-term.

+ Reduce energy costs. As any facility manager knows, HVAC and lighting tend to be the two primary contributors to facility energy costs.

If these systems are deteriorating, they may not be functioning efficiently, which means that they may be wasting energy. If these assets are tracked using facility management software, it will be easy to see how often they require maintenance, and whether it would be cost-effective to upgrade them.

Smaller measures, such as replacing traditional lights with LED alternatives, or installing variable frequency drives (VFDs) in HVAC systems, can substantially lower energy use. Building heating levels can also be analyzed in terms of BTUs (including those generated by the occupants themselves) and HVAC cycles can be calibrated accordingly.

These do not require a major investment and occupants will be happy to see the savings on their energy bills.

+ Make smart upgrades. Tracking historical costs will make it easier to make the case to owners for larger-scale sustainability measures.

Consumers report a growing preference for environmentally friendly products and services, and facilities that stay ahead of the curve on these technologies will position themselves to capture more business. Restroom fixtures, lighting, HVAC systems, green roofs, and other major upgrades can have a major impact on the appeal of your facilities.

These projects will be a much easier sell if the deterioration of existing facility infrastructure can be expressed in terms of dollars and cents. With facility management software, reports can be run on historical costs to determine whether it would be cost effective to make the switch to cleaner technology.

Many eco-friendly technologies also save significant costs over the long-term in addition to attracting more occupants, so it’s important to have a clear understanding of their benefits when weighing upgrade decisions.

As a facility manager, the better you are at your job, the happier your clients will be, and the easier it will be to win more business. Going from average to elite is a simple matter of streamlining operations and tracking detailed data with facility management software to drive upgrades that will keep clients happy and attract new business.

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