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FM ORGANISATIONS CONFIDENT OF GROWTH, SHOWS i-FM SURVEY

FM ORGANISATIONS CONFIDENT OF GROWTH, SHOWS i-FM SURVEY

The 2021 FM Business Confidence Index survey, produced by i-FM in association with Barclays, reveals that overall confidence levels across the facilities management market are pushing back towards the highs recorded early last year prior to the onset of the pandemic.

Throughout the first five months of this year the sector is reporting optimistic views on multiple key indicators. More than three-quarters (78%) of survey respondents rate the current facilities management business environment as at least satisfactory, with 56% rating it positive or very positive. 

Just over two-thirds (67%) expect trading at their organisation to improve this year. Almost a third (31%) expect headcount at their organisation to increase, with more than half (56%) expecting to at least maintain current job numbers.

The FM Business Confidence Index survey is designed to test frontline market views across UK facilities management, a business sector valued at about £110bn. The 2021 survey extends a research series first launched 10 years ago. 

Unpublished FM Business Confidence Index results from Q1 2020 showed high levels of confidence in this market and broad optimism for continued growth. However, the spread of the pandemic and subsequent lockdowns rapidly undermined these views. 

2021’s results show a move back towards last year’s early optimism, though with the challenge and pain of the intervening 12 months clear in some survey findings, too. But with the apparent success of the vaccination programme and the steady withdrawal of restrictions, combined with some emerging new opportunities, UK FM appears to be firmly on the road to recovery.

Terry Myatt, Director of Property Services Coverage at Barclays Corporate, commented: “Barclays is pleased to partner with i-FM for the 2021 Facilities Management Business Confidence Index. The last 12 months have highlighted the importance of the sector to the UK, and the latest version of this index highlights some of the unique developments seen over the course of the pandemic. The next 12 months look set to continue providing both opportunities and challenges for the FM sector, and we expect its resilience and adaptability to prove key in supporting UK PLC.”

David Emanuel, MD at i-FM, said: "While it is reassuring that the sentiments recorded in this year’s FM Business Confidence Index are back firmly on the positive side, we know there is still much more change to come – in all aspects of work and the workplace, including the implementation of new technologies, and around the multiple issues involved in sustainability - and that means many more challenges and opportunities for FM. 

“Throughout this whole pandemic period the spotlight has been on the discipline as never before. And that is a good thing, as it opens the door to more effective communication of the vital role facilities management plays in the lives of people, communities and the country as a whole.”

www.i-fm.net/bci2021 

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