The International Facility Management Association is pleased to introduce a quarterly survey entitled “Facilities Snapshot.” The new survey features input from a broad cross-section of IFMA members from around the globe and highlights the latest trends and developments impacting the facility management profession. The survey is designed to be a barometer of facility management activity worldwide.

“Facilities Snapshot” will ask a sample of facility professionals an identical series of questions every three months, with the intent of monitoring what changes in activity occur over time. These questions will address topics such as staffing and service provision, spending, facility planning and sustainability initiatives.

Additionally, each survey will include a few questions relating to current events affecting the present and future of the industry. Questions posed in the first survey ask facility professionals what they think the impact of recent health care legislation will be on both health care facilities and their own facility operations.

“Facilities Snapshot” begins with a look at the second quarter of 2010. Facility professionals largely see space, staffing and spending levels remaining the same over the next six months. The majority of FMs (59 percent) are implementing a variety of sustainability initiatives, though they’re not spending a lot on them. Sustainability efforts that don’t require a large financial outlay — such as energy conservation, recycling, waste reduction and employee education — are the ones most likely to be implemented first.

In regard to recent health care legislation, opinion is mixed. Most FMs say they are not sure what impact the legislation will have on health care facilities (38 percent), while several have a negative view of the legislation’s impact (30 percent) and notably fewer think it will have a positive effect (14 percent). When it comes to their own operations, facility professionals largely believe it will have no appreciable effect (27 percent), while others say it will lead to less capital for improvements (15 percent) or will place a greater demand on facility operations (7 percent).

“When comparing the facilities sector by industry, we see continued growth in the health care and educational sectors,” said Shari Epstein, IFMA’s director of research. “Other areas poised for growth include manufacturing, insurance and banking — specifically bank branches. The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 provided millions of dollars to federal entities for upgrades, and many federal facility managers have been able to use these funds to make needed improvements.”

For a free copy of “Facilities Snapshot – 2nd Quarter 2010,” click here. To learn more about IFMA research reports and survey results, click here.