Facility Operations

What Are Facility Operations?

Facilities operations include the management of all of the processes, people, tools, and assets that are required for a facility to fully perform as it is supposed to. Facility operations typically include the day-to-day operations of the facility, as well as getting ready for and executing future maintenance and improvement needs.

The operational procedures and requirements of each facility will vary depending on the industry in question. Facility operations may also be referred to as "facility management" or "facilities management."

Key Takeaways

  • Facilities operations refer to the management of all the people, processes, services, and tools needed to run a facility at the level it is meant to function at.
  • Facility operations is a management job that focuses on the efficient operation of the business, or a variety of businesses.
  • The job ensures that the organization's objectives are being followed and that best practices are being followed, meeting productivity and efficiency standards.

Understanding Facility Operations

Facility operations is a management job that focuses on the efficient operations of a variety of businesses, including retail stores, factories, offices, storage facilities, campuses, hospitals, warehouses, and other commercial spaces and facilities. The main concern in facility operations is operational in nature, such as ensuring that day-to-day management meets the objectives of the organization.

There are also strategic concerns, as well, such as an imperative to follow best practices, meet productivity and efficiency standards, and satisfy legal and safety requirements.

An example of facility operations would be a manufacturing facility. The facility could be broken down into process, production, and maintenance departments, with each department having different teams to oversee. The facility operations are the way each department and the teams work, both independently and together, and help the manufacturing facility reach its goals.

Individuals whose main job function is facility operations may be referred to as an "operations manager," "general manager," or "facilities manager."

Special Considerations: Key Responsibility Areas

Facility operations include a number of key duties and disciplines, such as:

  • Maintaining an inventory of physical assets and the management of those assets
  • Tracking the maintenance of facilities and physical assets, from preventative maintenance to scheduled maintenance to emergency repairs
  • Knowledge and use of computer systems for utilizing and managing facilities
  • The creation, maintenance, and use of facility-specific manuals to assist with the processes, methods, equipment, and tools, as well as the maintenance schedules that must be kept to in order to manage a facility 
  • Management of maintenance staff, as well as consideration of how they can operate most efficiently
  • Project management: given that the requirements of facility operations span so many disciplines, facility operators must be able to effectively define and prioritize needs, manage costs and procedures, and execute various management and maintenance projects simultaneously
  • Consideration and implementation of sustainable practices
  • Conducting risk management assessments and proposing and executing on corrective measures

Some additional areas that may fall under the aegis of facility operations include fire safety, security, cleaning, business continuity planning, space allocation, and equipment inspections.