13 April, 2021 | Posted by Cian Fahey

Facilities Management - A Certain Career Choice in Uncertain Times

Facilities Management

Comedian John Bishop recently met with actor Hugh Bonneville.

Bishop and Bonneville are both famous for different reasons so no, they weren’t coming together to create a comedic version of Downton Abbey. Instead, Bishop was waiting in line to get his vaccine while Bonneville organized the queue as a volunteer at a facility in West Sussex.

It’s the kind of bizarre meeting that doesn’t make sense even after you witness it. But that’s just one of the many side effects of living during a pandemic. Admittedly, it’s one of the more quirky, enjoyable side effects among a litany of horrible ones. Unfortunately most of us aren’t celebrities so we are dealing with new and unusual experiences that we don’t actually want.

For many of us, that means financial uncertainty and questions about our job security moving forward. Industries across the globe are taking financial hits. Employees across the globe are suffering. Nobody wants to be expendable anymore.

Celebrities at the top of their respective fields such as Bonneville and Bishop aren’t going to be the first ones out the door when companies inevitably cut costs.

It’s those of us further down the ladder who have to be wary of where we stand. That’s true across all industries.

Fortunately, the Facilities Management market is going to change but not suffer the same devastation as other economies. FM has become an integral department in industries of different kinds across the globe. Companies of varying sizes are seeking out qualified Facilities Management professionals to help them create more efficient working environments moving forward.

Preparation has already begun for life after the pandemic. FM professionals are going to have greater influence, greater financial reward and job security in the post-Covid world.

According to WhatisFM.com, these are the main benefits of becoming a qualified Facilities Management professional:

  • Great compensation
  • Job security
  • Problem solving
  • Travel opportunities
  • Leadership opportunities
  • Working closely with others
  • Providing a safe and desirable workspace for everyone
  • Striving to make working environments more efficient and sustainable

In America, the average annual salary for a Facilities Manager is $100,188. As of March 2021, the range typically fell between $85,896 and $114,622. While these are obviously guidelines and not directly related to jobs available in Ireland, they do reflect the health of the industry at large. This same average was around $70,000 in 2017 long before the pandemic.

Making six figures per year typically requires years of investment in education and a foundation of early achievement in education. That’s not the case for FM graduates.

Facilities Management students at Portobello Institute are working professionals. Some are tradesmen, others began their careers as security guards and worked their way up. You don’t need a Leaving Cert or prior qualification to quickly and effectively begin taking steps up the career ladder in FM.

Over 100 countries in the world offer employment opportunities in FM and the roles filled are rarely the same from company to company.


Why Facilities Management As A Career

In this video, we hear the reasons why working FM professionals chose their respective careers and what they enjoy about their work:


As an FM consultant, companies will fly you out to their base buildings or to their facilities to get your expert opinions on site. You can live in whatever country, city or town that you choose and still take advantage of the global marketplace at no cost to yourself.

Getting to see different cities across the world is a big attraction too. The participants in this video reference New York, Hong Kong and Las Vegas for example.



"Everyday I get to do something different."

Although technically an office job, this isn't an office job. You're constantly moving during the day. FM professionals rarely sit on the same seat and stare at the same screen for eight hours in a day. They're constantly facing new challenges and coming up with fresh ideas that entertain and engage their minds. Instead of having your brain slip into an autopilot state, each day is different so there's no such thing as monotony and the variety of tasks lets you engage with different elements in different settings.


Problem-Solving Skills:

Much of a FM professional's job is about anticipating problems before they have an impact. Building an environment that self regulates itself is the ideal endpoint but there will always be unforeseen issues that arise. It's the Facility Manager's responsibility (and in most cases their preference) to find solutions and work around/through those issues.

You start your career with some understanding of how to solve different problems and you continue to expand your skill set the longer you work in your industry.


Financial Gain

"You can make a tonne of money. There is so much money in this."

Ultimately, that's the reality of it. FM combines activity, enjoyment and benefits that allow you to build a fulfilling career while setting yourself up to maintain a high quality of life outside of the work environment. You can support yourself, support your family and trust that you have long-term job security with the right qualification.


Information on Facilities Management Courses

Portobello Institute will be holding a virtual open evening on the 22nd of April at 7pm. You can sign up here.

If you would prefer to read more about Facilities Management, the FM section of the knowledge zone has various articles discussing Facilities Management including What Does Facilities Management Cover?  To browse through the different FM courses available at Portobello, you can go directly to the Facilities Management department.

Finally, if you have any questions, you can contact course advisor Brandon on 01 892 0035 or email brandon.mclean@portobelloinstitute.com.

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