Facilities Director Job Description
The primary role of facilities directors, also referred to as directors of facilities or facilities managers, is to oversee the maintenance of buildings and grounds. These directors manage landscaping, building repairs, construction, renovations, and ordering of supplies for organizations’ facilities. Facilities directors oversee various personnel, such as repairmen, maintenance workers, supply managers, and landscapers, among others. In addition, facilities directors organize and set up furniture and workstations, manage the budget for a facility’s repairs and maintenance, relocate offices and workstations as needed, and communicate with contractors.
Facilities directors are employed by private businesses, colleges and universities, government agencies, and non-profit organizations. Reports from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) show that the employment growth rate for these professionals is projected to be 10 percent through 2026. The requirement for buildings to meet environmental standards and the need to increase energy efficiency, in addition to emergency management services provided by facilities directors, are believed to be the major factors impacting this expected growth.
Facilities Director Duties and Responsibilities
Facilities directors must pay attention to a variety of tasks to meet the demands of this position. Among the most common job responsibilities for this occupation are the following:
Manage Building Maintenance, Renovations, and Repairs
From overseeing security systems to managing renovation projects, facilities directors are responsible for everything that affects the buildings and grounds of an organization. They direct landscaping design and activities, manage crews for renovations or new building projects, and schedule and follow up on repair and maintenance of building structures and electrical, plumbing and other systems.
Arrange Workstations and Placement of Office Furniture
The interior design of workstations, furniture, and other items within an organization’s building typically falls to the facilities director. These directors choose furniture and office equipment styles and models, arrange furniture placement, and supervise the layout of departmental workstations and offices.
Manage Facilities Budgets
Facilities directors create and manage the budgets for building maintenance and other related activities. They develop budgets for supplies, personnel, contractors, and other facility needs. They update this budget as needed, ensuring that all operating costs fall within this structured budget. These budgets must be periodically reviewed with senior management.
Facilities Director Skills
Facilities directors should demonstrate strong oral and written communication, problem-solving, leadership, and organizational skills. They should be driven to meet deadlines, capable of working with little or no supervision, and have an eye for detail. The ability to set schedules, maintain budgets, and exercise time management skills is essential to the success of individuals working in this field. Strong interpersonal skills are also a must, as is the ability to work with diverse individuals, from maintenance technicians to top executives. In addition to these skills, facilities directors should display the following capabilities:
- Arrange maintenance schedules and manage projects
- Organize maintenance personnel and contractors to complete building repairs and renovations
- Oversee the arrangement of office furniture and workstations
- Maintain inventory of maintenance tools and supplies
Facilities Director Education and Training
Employers requiring candidates for facilities director positions to hold a degree typically look for a bachelor’s degree in engineering or facilities management. Some employers require only an associate’s degree, while others will accept a high school diploma. Voluntary certifications in this field, such as the Facilities Management Professional (FMP) or Certified Facility Manager (CFM) can be helpful for starting or advancing in this profession.
Facilities Director Tools of the Trade
It is imperative that facilities directors have knowledge of various systems and tools to help them achieve their daily goals. Facilities directors should be knowledgeable about the following:
- Maintenance systems – facilities directors should be familiar with all aspects of maintenance systems, such as preventative maintenance and supplies management
- Project management processes – from scheduling to budgeting, facilities directors employ project management knowledge on a daily basis and should be well schooled in these processes
- Basic computer systems – knowledge of computer tools, such as Microsoft Word and Outlook, are beneficial to facilities directors, as they utilize these programs to communicate with inter- and intra-company personnel
Facilities Director Salary
Statistics supplied by the BLS show that facilities directors earn a median annual salary of $90,050. Those in the lowest 10 percent are paid a median annual wage of $49,270 and top earners can realize a salary of $159,330. Those employed by companies, medical facilities, and colleges/universities are among the highest paid in this field. Facilities directors working in the northeastern U.S. see the highest mean annual salaries, led by New Jersey ($130,400), New York ($128,030), and Delaware ($113,300).
Facilities Director Resources
The additional resources provided below offer more insight into what is involved in becoming and working as a facilities director. These links to blogs, professional associations, and more can help one make an informed decision about pursuing a career in this field:
International Facility Management Association (IFMA) – Since 1980, IFMA has been providing professional facilities directors with educational and professional development opportunities, networking, and certification information.
Association for Facilities Engineering (AFE) – Begun in 1915, AFE offers classes, webinars, and certification training for facilities directors.
FMJ Magazine – The official magazine of IFMA, this online publication contains articles about current trends, best practices, technological advances, and other relevant information pertaining to facilities management.
Facility Executive Blog – From safety tips to sustainability practices, this blog contains various articles that supply insight into the role and duties of facilities directors.
The Facility Management Handbook – From case studies to responsibility overviews, this book provides an extensive look at the everyday work life and duties of facilities directors.
Facility Manager’s Maintenance Handbook – An updated look at equipment, procedures, and systems utilized by facilities directors. This book also reviews the management of costs, building codes, maintenance planning strategies and more.
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