2019: The Year of Engineers?

This year has started with a steep increase in demand for Engineers. We have seen an influx of vacancies with a further advanced skill-set required in comparison to similar roles available this time last year: the need for highly qualified, experienced and customer-facing engineers is increasing rapidly… but why is this?

Technology has transformed the way in which we operate, work and socialise, and it is no different for buildings. Technology has brought – and is constantly developing – new and innovative opportunities to manage and maintain building services. Technology led solutions offer greater efficiency, real-time asset data to aid decision makers and allows for further advanced sustainable design and procedures.

Technology has enabled smart buildings and workplace solutions, allowing engineers and facilities professionals to access real-time information on an asset’s space, environment, usage and the people within it. This information allows engineers to respond rapidly to needs and often react before an issue arises.

Sustainable engineering is becoming increasingly important with buildings required to reduce energy consumption, water and non-recyclable waste to respond to global challenges. This has meant Engineers need to be knowledgeable of the sustainable products available and be confident implementing and managing new environmentally friendly processes.

The way in which tenants use and acquire space is changing. Tenants want agile working solutions with the flexibility to grow or reduce headcount easily. There has also been a massive increase in flexible office leases, resulting in Engineers needing excellent technical knowledge and the ability to manage fit-outs in the most sustainable and efficient way possible. Engineers need to keep up with the shift in tenant demands and consequently, be more proactive in considering planned and reactive maintenance, security, lighting, access control, installation, and be able to advise and/or select the right technical equipment to utilise within a space.

In addition, tenants are becoming more demanding and selective with the space they chose to acquire. The impact the workplace has on a tenant’s wellness has become a crucial factor, which has brought growing attention to internal building environments. Engineers need to ensure that space is flexible, encompassing natural elements and the air quality, including heating, ventilation and air conditioning, are all checked and maintained regularly.

Rising tenant expectations now include a customer service approach from the entire facilities management team. This has led to the engineering job spec advancing, requiring excellent communication and personable skills. Tenants also expect consistent smooth running of the building with any problems reacted to immediately, resolved timely and clear proactive procedures in place to prevent issues emerging.

Competition from alternative landlords and business offerings are growing. Building management teams need to ensure building services are slick, flexible and innovative, with engineers advancing their offering to appeal to a vast array of tenants, maximise leases and increase asset value.

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