through an in-house building or engineering division, which typically focused on the tactical issues that arose in the day-to-day operation of individual buildings. As new functions were assigned to the in-house facilities division—strategic planning, construction coordination, utility management, space planning, and project management, among others—the essential areas of expertise and the skills base required to discharge these responsibilities broadened to include financial management and business-related skills (Figure S.1).
The recognition of facility costs, their impact on business operations, workforce health and safety, and the environment, in combination with technological, geopolitical, and socioeconomic trends, is driving a paradigm shift in how public and private organizations manage facilities and in the skills and capabilities required of the people who manage them. This paradigm shift is referred to as “facilities asset management.” In this report, facilities asset management is defined as a systematic process for maintaining, upgrading, and operating physical assets cost effectively. It combines engineering principles with sound business practices and economic theory and provides tools to facilitate a more organized, logical approach to decision making (NRC, 2004).
The goal of facilities asset management is to give an organization the work