Strategies for Managing Facility Budget Cuts

We’re mid-pandemic and just starting to slowly reopen the economy. But the jolting stop and uncertain business landscape has many of us facing facility budget cuts.

Genuine reminder: We’re all in this together.

Navigating the pandemic has been no easy feat for any of us. It’s no secret. There are many novel challenges that we have and still have to overcome. One of those is a major adjustment to our facility procedures, and likely cuts to your maintenance budget.

post pandemic facility budget cuts

A huge investment is being made around the globe in personal protective equipment, cleaning, and disinfecting.

But what about the landscaping? The HVAC filters that need changing? The leak that just popped up in the CEO’s office?

We can’t lose sight of the other important elements of keeping our buildings up and running. We’re working within tighter budgets, but it’s important to make sure your facility budget accounts for all the necessities.

Here are a few strategies to keep in mind and you re-prioritize your M&R funds.

* Perform essential preventative maintenance only. Or at least until your business reaches financial stability and certainty to set aside additional cash. Cosmetic and non-essential work orders like paint touch ups can be put on hold. Add these to a maintenance back log and as they pile up, you may even be able to negotiate a favorable rate for a larger quantity of work.

* Review and revise your scope of work to minimum. This is a necessary step before (spoil alert) putting contracts out to bid. If you aren’t putting work out to bid, you should at the very least review your service contracts to make sure you’re getting what you’re paying for and nothing less.

* Put contracts and service out for competitive bid. This is especially true if you’ve had a contract in place for a while and haven’t had the time or need to renegotiate. Contractors and suppliers will be eager for business and you’ll likely get a better contract rate.

* We should have covered this first, but if you don’t have a budget, MAKE ONE. How? Well, start with the information you have. And read our 5 Quick Building O&M Budget Tips. Pull your past 3 years of maintenance spend. You should be able to pull this easily from a report in your CMMS. Otherwise, work with your accounting department to pull together an annual or monthly summary. Take it a step further and break that spend down by contractor so you can see what you spend in each trade.

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Mariel Nowack

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