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Agile Strategic Facilities Plan


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Given the rate of change and budget pressures today, many organizations do not invest the time or resources to develop a traditional strategic facility plan. However, an agile management approach can be used to leverage available information so executives and facility staff can be confident that they have the right facilities in place and they are making good investment decisions.

Published in: Leadership & Management
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Agile Strategic Facilities Plan

  1. 1. Presented by Robert Lambe, CFM President, RAL Location Strategies Preparing An Agile Strategic Facilities Plan Insight From Your Facility Data
  2. 2. Insight From Your Facility Data Abstract Given the rate of change and budget pressures today, many organizations do not invest the time or resources to develop a traditional strategic facility plan. This makes it difficult for executives and facility staff to be confident that they have the right facilities in place and they are making the best investments in these assets. However, an agile management approach can be used to leverage available information and quickly create or revise a draft strategic facility plan. Once developed, this draft strategic facility plan can be used to guide decisions as well as to identify important information gaps.
  3. 3. Why Consider an Agile [Strategic] Facility Plan? You want some type of directional facility plan and don’t have one. (Because of funding, time, buy-in, etc. etc.) An agile facility approach may not be right for your organization.
  4. 4. Draft Facility Plan “Placeholder” – Established direction for near future – Based on documented baseline & forecast – Used to engage stakeholder input Prioritized Action Plan / List – Provides framework for decisions on asset investments and operational priorities Ongoing Assessment & Refinement Cycles – Agile project management used for action items – Reassess Draft Facility Plan based on measured progress after completion of action items What is an Agile Facility Plan?
  5. 5. PERSPECTIVES OF FACILITIES What are the different dimensions of facilities? Insight From Your Facility Data
  6. 6. Architectural Perspective “The Facility as Sculpture” • Size & Configuration • Form is important • Image matters (inside and out) • Physical Context • Asset Cost
  7. 7. Engineering / Building System Perspective “The Facility as Machine” • System Efficiency & Reliability • Facility Condition • Supporting Technology • Asset Cost • Sustainability
  8. 8. Business Operations Perspective “The Facility as Workplace” • Operational Efficiency • Productivity • Service Levels • Occupant Satisfaction • Supporting Technology
  9. 9. Real Estate Perspective “The Facility as Property Asset” • Location • Market – Asset Value • Image - Curb Appeal
  10. 10. Business Executive/ Finance Perspective “The Facility as Business Asset” • Business Value • Operating Cost • Workforce Recruitment & Retention • Sustainability
  11. 11. Different Perspectives Often Emphasize Different Dimensions of Facilities The perspectives may use different criteria to evaluate a facility. A plan helps alignment or prioritization of potentially conflicting perspectives. Size & Configuration Occupant Satisfaction System Efficiency/Reliability Asset Value Location Sustainability Image & Quality Business Value Facility Condition Operating Cost Operational Service Levels Supporting Technology Architectural Engineering Operations RealEstate Business
  12. 12. COMPETITIVE ADVANTAGE How can our facilities best support the organization’s mission? Insight From Your Facility Data
  13. 13. Why Have Facilities? • Facilities provide physical space for a business purpose – Size and location – Suitable image & environment – Budget and duration • Increasingly displaced by virtual space – Where physical presence not required, and – Where technology can effectively support remote-ness
  14. 14. How Can Your Facilities Provide a Competitive Advantage? • Location – Market position – Labor/recruiting – Logistics • Design – Image – Productivity: efficiency & effectiveness by type of space • Operation – Service levels – Risk management • Cost effectiveness – Capital (investment & asset) – Operating costs • Specific business value – Sustainability Understand Your Current Facility Assets Understand Your Organization’s Competitive Position Capitalize on the Value Each Facility Asset Contributes
  15. 15. STRATEGIC FACILITY THINKING What is the value of a strategic facility plan? Insight From Your Facility Data
  16. 16. Strategic Thinking is Always Important for Facility Assets • Facilities are expensive, and often take a long time to put in place or change. • A strategic facility plan helps to identify the highest value facility actions and their appropriate sequence. A strategic facility plan helps properly align your facilities with your needs.
  17. 17. Strategic Facility Plan A strategic facility plan (SFP) is defined as a two-to-five year facilities plan encompassing an entire portfolio of owned and/or leased space that sets strategic facility goals based on the organization’s strategic (business) objectives. The strategic facilities goals, in turn, determine short-term tactical plans, including prioritization of, and funding for, annual facility related projects. - IFMA (International Facilities Management Association)
  18. 18. Simple Illustration Office for Business Admin Business Plan WHY? Facility Plan WHAT, WHEN? Action Plan HOW? Retail for Local Sales & Service 25,000 SF, Baltimore, 2016 Refresh existing, Per approved, $$ Data/Call Center for Virtual/Online Remote work sites, 2018 Define roles and touchdown space Replace xx SF, TBD, 2019 Capital plan approval Close... Complete scoping study by ABC Rebrand... Extend lease... Find site... 8,000 SF, North site, 2016 4,500 SF, North site, 2016 5,000 SF, North site, 2016 6,100 SF, North site, 2016 5,000 SF, North site, 2017
  19. 19. Why You Need a Plan Better Cost/Investment Management • Facilities typically are a large part of most organization’s budget/assets so a plan is just good business. • Provide guidance (not commitment) on investments and activities to fund. • Minimize “mistimed” investments. Better Asset Management • Facilities cross all organization lines so a plan helps “visibly” coordinate sometimes competing needs. • Minimize waste (underutilized facilities). • Maintain asset values. Better Facility Operations • Respond to changing business environment more easily. • Improved alignment of SLA with organizational priorities. • Improved awareness of facility criticality.
  20. 20. THE AGILE FACILITY PLAN What to do when you don’t have a plan...
  21. 21. What is Agile? Agile methodology is an alternative to traditional project management, typically used in software development. It helps teams respond to unpredictability through incremental, iterative work cadences, known as sprints. Agile methodologies are an alternative to waterfall, or traditional sequential development. - See core agile principles at: (2001)
  22. 22. Agile Principles Applicable to Facilities Management • Customer satisfaction • Early and continuous delivery of useful facilities (shorter schedules/cycles) • Harness change for competitive advantage (be nimble and adaptable to changing requirements) • Collaboration between business and facilities • Technical excellence, Simplicity • Continuous improvement – regular review & adjustment
  23. 23. When to Use an Agile Approach • When you have no choice – Do not have a “sanctioned” Strategic Facility Plan – Need affordable plan or update – Have to plan from “bottom up” • When it is a better fit for you – In a dynamically changing environment – Need quick plan or update to current plan Need a collaborative environment with the business and some latitude for the team!
  24. 24. Agile/Strategic Facility Process • ROI • Risk • Goals • Consensus • Skills • Scope • Budget • Schedule • Steady State • Linear Projection • Evolution • Wild Card Future • Facts • Informed / Professional Opinion • Opinion Assess Forecast PrioritizeExecute STATUS QUO FUTURE NEEDS DELIVERY ACTION PLAN This is just a conceptual framework used to organize the presentation – free for unrestricted use (c) RAL Location Strategies 2016
  25. 25. Assess • Opinion • Informed Opinion • Professional Opinion STATUS QUO Assess Start with your current facilities (& operations) and how well they support the current business situation. Tip: Consider the different perspectives of facilities.
  26. 26. Assess • What do you know? – Facts: Size, type, cost – Across the multiple dimensions of facilities – Documented requirements, operations & SLA • What do you believe? – Assessments: condition, utilization... (performance!) – Complete missing info with best available opinions • Tabletop review / assessment can be quick, efficient, and probably effective enough
  27. 27. Suggestions • Have a comprehensive, complete, and available facility inventory. – Define the facilities as intuitively as possible, based on their functional purpose. – Use an appropriate granularity for your quantity of facilities. • Draw on various data sources for economy of effort and consistency; use meta-data to understand data quality – Define categories to quantify “soft” assessment ratings. • Start benchmarking/metrics immediately.
  28. 28. Forecast • Steady State • Linear Projection • Evolution • Wild Card Future FUTURE NEEDS Forecast Project how well the current facilities are expected to support the likely future business situation. Tip: Consider how your facilities can provide a competitive advantage.
  29. 29. Forecast • What will the world look like in near future? – How is this likely to effect your industry? • Estimate the likely short-term business needs – How can your facilities help provide a competitive advantage? • Estimate the likely short-term implications for your current facilities: – Continue status quo – Need more information – Ready for defined investments (projects) – Need major changes
  30. 30. The Future is not Linear • Ask What If? – Much of the value of a plan comes from being ready when things don’t go as expected • Many forks in the road can be forecast – Define trigger points and criteria for decisions • Only do as much as time allows Image source: "Manual decision tree" by User:Gokul Jadhav - Own work. Licensed under Public Domain via Commons -
  31. 31. Prioritize ACTION PLAN • ROI • Risk • Goals • Consensus Prioritize List the “actions” that logically follow from the Assess and Forecast. Prioritize which are most important or valuable to do first. Tip: Apply strategic thinking about value and sequence.
  32. 32. Prioritize • Create a list of potential actions: – Study: Need more information or better assessment – Projects: Make change to physical plant – Initiative: Make change to operational practices (i.e.. facility commissioning or occupant education) • Classify each action by the reason and urgency. – Reason/justification: • Financially justified investments (payback) • Risk reduction, regulatory • Business value, improvement in operations or other goal – Urgency can be simple: immediate - later • Put placeholder budgets and schedules on each.
  33. 33. Who Should Be Involved? • Key Executives – Resource levels – Organizational priorities • Stakeholders (Business & facility occupants) – Business priorities – Impacts to the business • Facility staff and service providers – Resource requirements – Project logic • Decision making may need to be iterative for all groups to understand implications Decisions should be based on consensus
  34. 34. Execute DELIVERY • Skills • Scope • Budget • Schedule Execute Use good project management to implement the selected actions Tip: Use an Agile Project Management approach.
  35. 35. Execute • Reasonable but timely status reporting • Use established organizational systems for execution of selected actions – Team structure is the biggest challenge for most organizations in adopting agile approaches – Follow agile principles for short cycles with ongoing adjustments and evaluation • Track and evaluate results – Use to update assessments – Use for frequent course corrections in plan *
  36. 36. RINSE, LATHER, REPEAT Build better data and better plan each year...
  37. 37. Conclusion • Different perspectives of our facilities both help identify how they provide value and complicate how we evaluate them. • A strategic approach helps prioritize facility investments and initiatives to realize their competitive value for our organization. • The “Agile Methodology” is an incremental, iterative management approach that can be useful for Facility Planning in a rapidly changing environment as long as there is a good relationship between the business and facilities groups. Insight From Your Facility Data
  38. 38. About the Presenter Insight From Your Facility Data Robert Lambe is the Principal & Founder of RAL Location Strategies. He helps companies use available information to better understand their facilities assets and facilities management operations, in order to target investments that align with business requirements. His practice areas are agile/strategic facility planning, facility benchmarking, location analysis, and facilities software implementation. Bob also serves as the Planning and Economic Development Coordinator for his home town of Marcy NY. Connect with me! Blog: