A Healthcare Facilities Manager’s role is a more crucial version of a Facilities Manager role as it is in a healthcare setting where an oversight of a problem can bring about a life-or-death situation for some patients.
A Healthcare Facilities Manager’s (HFM) key responsibility of external upkeep includes the facility’s aesthetics such as lawn maintenance, keeping windows and flooring clean, excellent paint job, maintaining clear driveways and uncluttered pathways. Normally people are less critical of building structures in general but when it comes to a hospital or other healthcare setting, they tend to scrutinize every little detail. Windows blurred with greasy fingerprints, cracked floor tiles that pose a falling hazard, peeling paintwork or un-mowed lawns can project a substandard corporate image. It will appear as if the patient service provided is haphazard and instill little confidence in visitors, prospective patients and customers. Projecting a good image is always vital in the healthcare sector.
Besides maintaining a good corporate image, the HFM’s major day-to-day responsibilities include ensuring all heating, HVAC, ventilating, and refrigeration are properly functioning; water, electricity, and other utilities are operating at efficient levels. He works closely with contractors or internal personnel to adhere to maintenance schedules. He is expected to conduct frequent inspections and have inspection reports generated. He oversees all building repairs and renovations, and may have to co-ordinate work with other HFMs of facilities beyond his scope of responsibility.
An ideal candidate for the HFM job will be someone who is proactive, reliable, honest, a quick-thinker and fast worker, alert, independent, can prioritize and effectively multi-task. A pleasant disposition greatly helps when dealing directly with customers and tenants who may have complaints. He is prepared to work after office hours and possibly on weekends either for specific projects or attending to emergencies. Good in math, he is able to approve new projects or prepare cost estimates for the approval of top management.
Above all he must be appropriately qualified (usually a Bachelor’s degree in Healthcare Facilities Management in an approved institution), AHA certified, be familiar with OSHA Regulation, Life Safety Code, EPA, Fire Regulations, Joint Commission, and other relevant qualities and standards that pertain to the facilities. He must have around 7-10 years of relevant work experience in preferably a healthcare setting and is familiar with healthcare equipment, of which about 5 years is in a management position. He will be familiar with basic computing equipment like a desktop, a tablet or mobile communicating device, pagers, and operating basic office software like Microsoft Office.
Not always deskbound, he is expected to work in varied environment conditions – outdoors and exposed to climatic extremes like snow or dry heat, or in enclosed areas with potential exposure to hazardous chemicals such as PPE. He should be physically fit, able to climb tall ladders, move nimbly into small crawl spaces, and lift heavy objects around 50 lbs.