The Importance of Benchmarking Your Facility Maintenance Activities

Posted by Marcell Haywood on Dec 10, 2015 9:00:00 AM
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Benchmarking is an incredibly important practice in the field of facility maintenance; primarily because it’s a powerful way to reduce operating expenses and improve sustainability.

Here are some reasons why your outsourced facility maintenance contractor should be properly benchmarking their activities. 

The Perks of Benchmarking 

Effective benchmarking will give you visibility into your vendor’s spend and the service performance that’s being carried out at site level. It should also position the performance in your facility in relation to global standards as well as your particular contractor’s performance across all of their accounts.

According to the IFMA Foundation, the value of benchmarking lies within:

  • Transparency of operating costs at the granular level
  • Facts and statistics to support decision-making
  • Agility and speed in making decisions, saving money and improving outcomes
  • Business intelligence across sectors to compare performance, analyze the impact of investments and leverage innovations

Facts and Figures 

Here are some statistics from IFMA that show the power of benchmarking:

  • The median company in one benchmarking database was able to reduce its operating expenses by 31% over 10 years of benchmarking
  • The median company in the same benchmarking database was able to reduce its energy consumption by 40% over 10 years of benchmarking 

How it Works

Your facility managers can work to decrease costs by understanding how their facility performs relative to other comparable facilities.

Among the most popular items that facility managers want to measure are space utilization and energy consumption or costs

In order to accurately benchmark, they need to first take note of the cost of their current maintenance activities, including standard (internal and contracted) and exceptional (internal and contracted), costs in the analysis.

Next, the data needs to be normalized on a unit cost basis (e.g. gross square feet or factored gross square feet) to determine how efficiently the services are provided. The data then needs to be analyzed with special attention paid to where your organization stands in relation to the median and if your current position warrants corrective action.

Last but not least, the analysis should be validated to distinguish both the similarities and differences between facilities being benchmarked in order to confirm the findings are accurate.


Remember, these metrics are not meant to stand alone. As Facilities Net points out, “New technologies and trends should be considered to present a true picture of space needs. This type of analysis is intended not as a simple comparison, but as a way to identify an acceptable range.”

At the end of the day, properly benchmarking can not only lower your operating costs, but reduce your energy consumption as well. Find out what numbers you should be hitting today!

Are you currently benchmarking your facility maintenance activities? If so, how do you go about benchmarking?

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Topics: Outsourcing, Sustainability

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