The new triple bottom line for fm (3)

FM’s new “Triple Bottom Line”

While the term is not a recent creation, applying it to Facility Management is a response to pursuing ways to award the discipline visibility and recognition. Endowing FM with appealing adjectives can generate interest in sectors or groups which until now have not been paid due attention.

The Triple Bottom Line

In order to make a valid adaptation, it is essential to understand what the theory is based on, i.e., to know what Triple Bottom Line (or TBL) represents for companies. The concept is linked to the promotion of a sustainable economy which prioritises three aspects of business; not only the obvious financial component, but also the environmental and social factors. When an organization integrates a TBL-oriented policy, it will attempt to maximise financial profit without neglecting the social or environmental considerations, while simultaneously seeking to eliminate, or reduce to the greatest possible extent, the negative impact on these facets.

It is worth mentioning that Robert Kaplan, who, for those who may not know, is one of the creators of the Balance Score Card (BSC), so widely used in business, states in his latest research study that implementing a TBL is more effective and measures results more effectively than using the ESG approach, which is currently so popular. Kaplan states that TBL is like ESG but without the G. He points out that it has a social and environmental focus while factoring in a company’s own economic objectives. How the management of each aspect is measured is very different and therefore it may not lead to measurable results, since the measurement performs as a process. In any event, this is the basis of the analogy we are advocating.

Our interpretation

The idea emerged during a consulting project, while sorting different factors to define the best FM strategy with a clear business policy based on the TBL. This is when the idea arose: why not devise our own approach, but with 3 components of the model? We decided to prioritise people, but without losing sight of the sustainable side, while integrating technology as the main lever. The three components must coexist and none of them can be omitted, ensuring a viable and long-lasting equilibrium over time.

The first key point is that TBL applies to companies and here we want to extrapolate it, albeit in other terms, to a single area, specifically the FM department. This means that the emphasis is no longer on the business itself, but rather on the support required, with all its consequences. If you consider the perception of those who use or “inhabit” a space as a priority without overlooking the remaining factors, we are referring to people-centred models. This idea is not new either; we addressed it in 2016 (watch video), expecting this approach to be common practice today.

The sustainable component has been rising through the ranks of FM’s priorities, while general awareness and the legislation surrounding it concurrently grows. It is imperative to define policies, or at least procedures which regulate the functioning of the area and the conduct of external suppliers. If we could also offer solutions to reduce the impact, or propose measures that help achieve the overarching goal, we would further strengthen the rationale behind including it as part of our TBL.

Finally, technology is no longer an option but an obligation. We might say that, just as we cannot conceive running a company without the use of computers, it is hard to imagine an advanced FM model without a technology layer that receives and processes data, acts more or less intelligently, and provides the best information in real time to aid decision-making. The traditional reporting model, understood as a set of documents, is obsolete.

The event

The new concept of the Triple Bottom Line in FM will be the theme of the CIFMERS 22nd September congress. The 3 components will be grouped two by two in three conference blocks; people and sustainability, sustainability and technology, and technology and sustainability. One of the objectives, apart from dissemination, is to test the validity of the proposal in order to create a white paper or document to promote and use the concept. Those who cannot come to Madrid will be able to connect to the online webcast. For more information and to register, click here.

Hopefully, this approach will encourage the upper echelons in the business community to take a little more interest in what we do and allow us to gain visibility and recognition.

David Martínez  

share on your social networks
Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin

Do you want more information about what we do in Consultancy, Training and Research en Facility Management?

Hola, ¿cómo
podemos ayudarte?

Rellena el siguiente formulario y te enviaremos el reglamento interno y código ético:

Participate in the Observatorio FM

You can choose between these 3 options to participate:

How to participate?

Collaborating with the Observatorio FM is a personal and voluntary decision, and there is no contractual obligation or economic retribution for it.

Any interested person can apply to participate as a leader of a new project, or apply as a collaborator in an existing one.

A technical committee will evaluate the subject matter of the proposed projects and the applications of the participants, deciding which ones are carried out and by whom.

Each person decides how much they want to dedicate, depending on their availability or type of project. The aim is for it to be an altruistic activity and not an additional workload.

What does it consist of?

To promote and publish studies that help professionals in the sector and to help others understand our profession and discipline.

The results and deliverables are shared openly, always acknowledging the contributions of all authors and contributors.

The Observatorio FM’s activity will respect the objectivity, ethics, rigour and good practices that govern our Research area.

Contributors have access to the best collaborative tools, sectoral information and contacts, as well as the assistance of expert consultants and researchers at international level.


FM Observatory

FM Observatory is a platform which develops and disseminates Facility Management information. It’s accessible to all those who’d genuinely like to participate. Ethical use and objectivity are essential, and all results must be shared. You decide how long you devote to it and what you want to achieve.

You can participate as:

  • Leader: define the topic and coordinate the activity
  • Collaborator: help with development

We will provide:

  • Current situation and trends regarding the subject
  • Access to experts and advisers
  • Collaborative tools
  • Design assistance and dissemination platform

All contributions will be given credit in completed projects.



We are part of the European research group and we work in international teams to develop different types of initiatives:

  • Public financing
  • International bids

We also work for service providers who require support with decisions linked to:

  • Positioning
  • Product launches
  • Finding partners


As accredited experts in the drafting processes of European and International standards on Asset and Facility Management, we are the perfect partner to assist you with:

  • Standards alignment
  • Assistance with certification
  • Specialised training

FMHOUSE is the only Spanish-speaking consulting firm that participates in these processes.



At FMHOUSE we think that progress made in Facility Management should be shared, so we strive to produce and publish the following material:

  • National and international trends
  • Industry analyses
  • Market studies

The “FM Observatory” is open, should you like to contribute with a publication.



Our view of spaces or workplaces from a Facility Management perspective leads to a better understanding of such a need as a service, as it is essential to apply the same logic and methodology.

Generally we offer:

  • Assessment and optimisation
  • Design strategies
  • Solutions and scenarios
  • Wellbeing and productivity

We apply our knowledge and experience to offices, learning spaces, shopping centres and the industrial environment.



In order to make the right decisions, clear accurate market data as well as facts about the organisation itself is essential. In the Facility Management environment, this is even more critical due to the impact it has on business.

Examples of benchmarks:

  • Operating costs
  • Resource use/allocation
  • Audits and compliance assessment

These services are requested mainly by end users, but also by service providers.


Customer Experience

Facility Management’s overarching goal is customer satisfaction, whether they are internal or external. Understanding their feelings and needs is the key to offering a good service.

Our support is based on:

  • Satisfaction assessment
  • Customer perception
  • People-oriented models
  • Change management

We strive to understand and get to know our clients’ customers, in all sectors and types of businesses.


Digital Transformation

The Facility Management world is experiencing a major transition to digital environments. We help our clients understand how it impacts them and assist them throughout the change.

Our areas of support are:

  • Process digitization
  • Viability and integration
  • Digital culture
  • Technological response

We operate as independent advisers, not as brand vendors.

We advise end-users and service providers.

Hello, ¿how
can we help you?


Service Design

All kinds of companies need to define or improve the way in which it structures supporting activities provided by Facility Management.

Our main products are:

  • Status diagnostics
  • Service dimensioning
  • Grouping and models
  • Help with tenders
  • Assistance with implementation

Our proposals are structured according to individual requirements.

We help end customers and also service providers.

In FMHOUSE, we use third party cookies to improve our services. If you continue with navigation, we will consider that you accept our terms of use y nuestra privacy policy y de cookies