The British Institute of Facilities Management is changing its name to the Institute of Workplace and Facilities Management.
A Manifesto for Change unveiled by Chairman Steve Roots earlier this year – which set out to re-frame facilities management by emphasising its ability to make a real contribution to organisations’ performance – has been resoundingly supported by members who have voted overwhelmingly to adopt the new name.
The Manifesto sets the Institute the twin tasks of helping members improve their skills and their status to meet the needs of modern organisations; and raising the profile of facilities management and the value it contributes. It also signals a commitment to work towards members’ desire for the profession to achieve Chartered Body status, confirming that the FM profession is well established and is capable of recognition in its own right.
Research on the current FM landscape, its future, its relationship to workplace and the role BIFM should play showed that, against a background of unprecedented change, FM has built a track record which highlights its contribution to organisational success. The research also identified a clear desire for FM to be operating in a different, more strategic, space – as value creator, not cost centre.
The Special Resolution, which required the support of more than 75 per cent of eligible voting members to succeed, was passed at last week’s AGM in Manchester.
“I am delighted that the membership has voted to change the Institute’s name and approved the course planned for the next phase of the professional body for all those who contribute to workplace productivity,” said Chairman Steve Roots.
“The Board listened to the views of members and the wider profession in shaping proposals designed to make BIFM more valuable to the FM profession, the FM industry and the wider business community.
“The Institute has a role in helping to re-set expectations and forge ahead with making workplace and facilities management a career of choice for the coming generation. This mandate means we can really grasp the opportunity presented by the leading-edge associations of workplace to reposition what FMs do.
“This Special Resolution, quite rightly, required a high level of support to succeed, but I want to say to everybody, including those members who did not feel able to vote for the resolution, that this Institute is today and will remain fundamentally the professional home for all facilities managers. The Board and I are committed to shaping an inclusive organisation that is fully committed to the advancing the FM profession.
“What we will now do both in name and in deed is re-frame expectations of the FM role, adding to it without taking anything away – and that includes our Britishness. We are changing our name, not our geographical focus, but we do recognise that many of our members, including those in Ireland and the Middle East, have broader outlooks and we will continue to work closely with them as we have done for many years.
“As we turn 25 we are entering an exciting new era as a professional body, transforming what we do and what we are. I look forward to working with members and colleagues to make the best of this opportunity for FM.
CEO Linda Hausmanis added: “The external environment for our members is changing rapidly and BIFM has readied itself to change with it. I am thrilled by this result and excited by the prospect of leading a strong, proud and relevant professional body that is a fitting home for the FMs of today and tomorrow.
“We are, and we will remain an inclusive body. Wherever FMs are in their career this Institute will provide a framework of qualifications, professional standards and development opportunities.
“I am absolutely committed to creating a first-class organisation for the best possible support for FM professionals, so they may build the skills necessary for today’s workplace and maximise the impact of the work that they do.
“We have been preparing the ground for some time to strengthen our foundations and fit ourselves for a future of sustained development, so we may build a professional body fit for the twenty first century.
“Our plans to refresh our brand and systems are already in progress and now that the membership has decided, we will adopt our new name and our new look before the end of the year.”