Should I use a contracted facility maintenance company or hire onsite staff?

The answer to this question is not necessarily a clear cut one. I’ve seen businesses on the entire contractor-to-onsite-staff spectrum: from 100 percent outsourced to 100 percent in-house and every spot in between. That’s the way it ought to be. In the business world, every company is a little different and will have unique maintenance needs.

Here are some tips to help you strike the right balance between onsite maintenance staff and outside contractors for your own organization.

Employ Full-Time Point Person

Whether you hire a full-time maintenance supervisor or simply have one person at your contractor company assigned full-time to your organization, it is critical to have that point person to manage the maintenance work.

Someone must be accountable for the planning, management, and execution of the overall maintenance program.

Use Contractors to Check Performance

Even if you choose to hire an internal maintenance staff, consider using contractors occasionally to stay efficient. Outside facility management companies must be dedicated to best practices and efficiency in order to stay competitive in the market. Make sure your internal staff is performing as well or better than those outside contractors. If not, invest in improving internal performance or considering outsourcing some tasks to cut costs.

Outsource Specialty Work

If you’re looking for a mix of internal and external maintenance staff, I’d recommend keeping your daily preventive maintenance work in-house. Invest in the people that provide your bread-and-butter maintenance services.

Contract out temporary work or specialty jobs that require particular expertise or certification that you don’t require all the time. For instance, seasonal work such as lawn care or new construction should be contracted as well as both low-skill, low-paying work and high-skilled, specialty work.

Both maintaining an internal staff and hiring a facility management company have advantages and disadvantages. When you’re trying to make the decision for your company, try to create the combination that maximizes the advantages of both options.

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