Happy World FM Day!
For World FM Day I wanted to share a blog post that highlighted the role the University of Manchester Library plays in providing the best possible facilities for our customers (including students, researchers, staff and visitors). This role is supported by a range of partners, in particular the University of Manchester Estates department.
University Estates departments have long provided great services across campuses. As the way The University of Manchester campus evolves and our customer’s requirements change, we must understand what we currently provide, where we must change our services and what is on the horizon for us to plan for. Working closely with our Estates department and other service providers, we aim to help build this understanding from the Library’s (or client’s) perspective.
That is why we are enhancing our role in providing client-side Library Space and Facilities Management across the organisation. This will ensure that the inputs to the Library (services such as cleaning, catering, building access, library systems, space management etc) provide the outputs our customers require.
Space and facility management teams will play a key role in exploring options to help meet our customer’s changing needs. I predict a shift towards libraries offering more personalised spaces within communal settings. I believe the following are key trends that will happen within this shift over the next five years.
Transform – people will soon expect a space to be easily locatable and configurable to meet their preferences, by way of e.g. retractable walls and personal light and heat settings (see how this personalisation has been achieved with incredible sustainability performance at The Edge development in Amsterdam)
Power – growing concern for our environment, couple with growing demand for study spaces, will lead to more solutions based on solar powered wireless charging points being provided on all worktops
Informal learning – libraries will have to offer a range of spaces that support ad hoc collaboration and informal learning and that are technologically enriched for all devices (for groups of varying sizes)
Unplugged – growing awareness of digital well being will force libraries to provide technology free, nature enriched spaces for users
Library Space and Facilities Manager