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Australian standards set to transform FM industry

Last week the business case for the adoption of the ISO 41000 standards for facilities management (FM) was lodged with Standards Australia. This milestone event marks the next significant step in their transition towards becoming national standards.

The development of the ISO 41000 series (which includes 41001, 41011, 41012 and 41013) began almost seven years ago, and engaged the interest of 45 countries. The Facility Management Association (FMA) played a key role in this international process, and has also driven the identical adoption of the standards at a national level through Standards Australia.

FMA Chief Executive Officer Nicholas Burt believes the standards will demonstrate the importance and professional nature of the industry. “The ability to be accredited to what is now commonly known as ISO 41001 is a landmark event that will place the industry on the international stage,” he said.

“This is an incredible achievement by all those involved in the development of the ISO 41000 series,” said Acting CEO of Standards Australia, Adrian O’Connell. “We thank the FMA and the MB-022 Facility Management technical committee for driving this significant work at the international level. Australia’s contribution has provided better alignment to international facility management industry practice, and it demonstrates the value of Australian participation on a global scale.”

The FMA has undertaken considerable work to prepare the industry for the new standards. It has held information sessions on the ISO 41000 series, as well as professional development courses to help facilities managers understand the technical detail, implementation options, and how the standards will drive efficiency and productivity.

The FMA will also ensure those responsible for certifying organisations to ISO 41001 are qualified to undertake the work and have relevant knowledge and experience in facilities management.

Australia’s identical adoption of the current ISO 41000 series is set to deliver a host of benefits, including:

  • greater consistency within Australia’s FM industry;
  • more reliable FM outcomes, achieved through consistent definitions and improved procurement procedures;
  • greater understanding of FM practice, both within the industry and among the wider community;
  • improved efficiency and reduced waste, thanks to lower risk of duplication due to misunderstandings;
  • alignment across global markets and an international set of parameters to assist in service delivery; and
  • advances in FM research and innovation.

In addition to ensuring the health, well-being and sustainability of our built environment, facilities management underpins activities economy wide. As we take the final step towards adopting ISO 41000, we enter a new phase in which the FM industry will become better recognised for the profession it is and the value it provides.

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