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The Evolving Role of Facility Managers Amidst COVID Crisis

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Having 23 years of experience in the services industry, Deepak has led large integrated facilities management enterprises in India and APAC.

We are living in unprecedented times. The spread of COVID-19 across the globe and its repercussions within our country itself stands testament to the severity of the crisis. Post COVID-19, once we move in the normalcy zone, it would have radically altered the ethos of business functionality. There are many service industries such as banking, hospitals, media, and information technology (IT) that are functioning to maintain the financial and healthcare security of the nation amidst this pandemic. To ensure the business support solutions with the cleanliness of the premises of the companies which are currently functional in the lockdown, facilities management companies are deploying resources to ensure optimum soft-hygiene and effective sanitation of the sites.

Blue-collar workforces are on the frontline even amidst this crisis and working in tough conditions. The biggest learning from this critical period is the management’s ability to embrace a whole host of newer measures and operating standards, not only for the safety of employees but also to maintain business continuity. This COVID-19 pandemic has put the spotlight on the facility management services with a focus on cleaning, disinfecting, and sanitization. It has called for a renewed view for hygiene and overall facility management to adapt to the new set of challenges through differentiated services.

Safety Foremost:The big trial that facility managers are facing right now is safety, not only of their own employees but also the residents where they are providing their services. Ensuring compliance with the government’s protocols on health and safety requirements is critical. Adhering to guidelines on hygiene practices, maintaining social distancing, and limiting personnel interaction is another crucial aspect. Screening at the premise via infra-red thermometers has been a set protocol for ingress at all operational sites. A daily update call on COVID status is part of SoP at each site. Keeping medic & authorities reach out details handy is the new normal.

Soft-Hygiene Services: Need of the Hour
Minimizing the risk of infections in buildings, both commercial and residential from the threat of COVID-19, has become core to the entire FM service delivery module at any/all active sites.