What is Facility Management in 2021?

The answer should be straightforward, since an international standard, ISO 41011, which defines FM perfectly, has been in place since 2017. The difficulty arises when more than 55% of professionals in the sector state they are unfamiliar with this series of regulations. This issue is addressed in the report “FM awareness survey 2021” with over 2,300 responses from 89 countries. The rate of nescience may exceed 90% globally, if we take into account, firstly, that the channel used was LinkedIn, where we often mention the progress of standardisation work, and secondly, that there are thousands of professionals who are not on this network, and who are probably not even conscious of its existence.

My house, my rules

To understand what Facility Management is in practical terms, despite there being a standard definition, one must bear in mind that it depends on how it is interpreted and above all how it is applied. This is invariably dictated by each company, depending on its line of business and the knowledge it has of FM at a decision-making level.

Concerning the sector, it will always be more common to see it implemented in corporate office spaces rather than in industrial environments, although FM can be applied in all realms. These can include education, shopping centres or healthcare real estate. The focus will be different in every case, but there will always be a more or less advanced FM model.

The scope of knowledge that each firm, or rather each general manager, has of FM will determine which services remain in the area, what it is called or to whom the department reports following company hierarchy. This knowledge can also influence how services are grouped or ungrouped, the resources assigned to them and how competencies are distributed, executed in the same way as with the structure of other departments in the organisation.

Environmental influence

Not everything depends on the company itself when it comes to the size of the department and the activities within the Facility Management area. The degree of maturity of each country is a determining factor. We work with more than 20 indicators to measure how advanced a market is, but in this case, those that best apply are legislation, the existence of suitable suppliers and the relevance of international companies which can establish a roadmap with their models. Whether the country has participated in the standardisation process is also factored in, since this may have helped spread the message among local industry professionals.

All this means that the way Facility Management is implemented may be different in two similar companies, even if the official definition of the discipline is the same. That will be the starting point for each firm, and one it must be aware of if it wants to evolve towards more advanced models. On that account, it is important to take all these factors into consideration.

What will become of Facility Management?

This is a difficult question to answer. After the recognition achieved through the pandemic, we must not be sidetracked by simple flattery during what is now known as “the fourth wave”. Technology is the future but for the time being, FM is not technological. That is not to say that suppliers are not laying the groundwork, which they are. The question is, who is going to make the decisions in companies? The scope and competencies covered by FM will not cease to exist, but the name and the professionals as we know them may. In this regard, universities and Facility Management courses fail to provide sufficient training. If the future of our profession currently lies in lecture rooms and other learning spaces, when these students finish their studies there will be others who are better prepared and who will occupy positions that require knowledge that the former have not acquired. It would not be the first time that the IT department, or until recently the computer science department, has overtaken us without us noticing.

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Participa en el Observatorio FM

Puedes escoger entre estas 3 opciones para participar:

¿Cómo participar?

Colaborar con el Observatorio FM es una decisión personal y voluntaria, no existiendo vinculo contractual ni retribución económica por ello.

Cualquier persona interesada puede solicitar participar como líder de un nuevo proyecto, o postularse como colaborador en alguno ya existente.

Un comité técnico valorará la temática de los proyectos propuestos y las solicitudes de los participantes, decidiendo cuáles se llevan a cabo y por quién.

Cada persona decide cuanto quiere dedicar, en función de  su disponibilidad o tipo de proyecto. El objetivo es que sea una actividad altruista y no una carga de trabajo adicional. 

¿En qué consiste?

En promover y publicar estudios que sirvan de ayuda a los profesionales del sector y para que el resto entienda nuestra profesión y disciplina.

Los resultados y entregables se comparten en abierto, reconociendo siempre las aportaciones de todos sus autores y colaboradores.

La actividad del Observatorio respetará la objetividad, ética, rigor y buenas prácticas que rigen nuestro área de Investigación.

Los colaboradores tienen acceso a las mejores herramientas colaborativas, a información sectorial y a contactos, además de contar con asistencia de expertos consultores e investigadores a nivel internacional.


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.


Service Models

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.

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