Global challenges, such as rising energy prices and climate change, are continuing to impact businesses this year. As organisations respond, Mark Arcari, Group Business Development Director in Banking and Professional Services, says ISS will use fresh insights and new technology to align facilities management solutions for clients, in line with their evolving priorities.
Having worked in the industry for over 25 years, Mark has seen many shifts in the way that companies think about their workspaces. He believes that understanding how companies can better support sustainability, both in terms of environmental and social priorities, will become even more important this year. “In 2023, more than ever, we’ll be continuing to challenge ourselves as to how we can help customer journeys to net zero by reducing their emissions—through, for example, energy and waste optimisation programmes,” says Mark. “There’s also an important social element to consider: how do we drive environmental engagement while connecting people and communities?”
In the wake of rising interest rates and predictions of a global recession, Mark highlights that responding to these economic pressures will be an immediate priority for most businesses. “It will be an industry-wide challenge for our clients and suppliers alike,” he says.
Data will continue to be a crucial enabler in helping ISS optimise costs and services to clients’ needs, and mitigating risks. “Having business intelligence to support better value-based decisions will be core,” Mark explains. “We will work with our clients to inform and advise on which building to invest in, how much space is required, cost and value decisions, and how to improve the services—helping to balance their colleague experiences while optimising their input costs. How we, together with our clients, use those insights is going to be key in 2023.”
He notes the further potential in analysing the links between facilities management and real estate data. “Very often these two service towers are looked at in isolation. We will integrate these data streams to uncover opportunities for both portfolio and service optimisations.”
In the banking sector, Mark says conversations about space requirements—and whether they are fit for purpose—are “front and centre” of client discussions. In turn, as banks digitise and migrate to a hybrid working model, the focus on “removing any barriers between real estate and facilities management data” will enable more intelligent insights, he explains.
The way companies use workspaces is another key consideration for 2023, as businesses continue to adapt to working life post-pandemic. “I think the challenge we are faced with is how to think creatively about space optimisation,” says Mark. “Most companies want to update their workplace offerings for three main reasons—enabling teamwork and innovation, attracting talent, and enhancing the feeling of belonging. This will require a reimagined workspace, with collaboration at its core.”
And, as data becomes increasingly important, cyber security will remain a priority, he adds. “We will continue to work with our clients to ensure data security and protection.”
The changes in the market will call for ISS to be “more flexible and fluid in our approaches going forward”, says Mark. “Who could have foreseen some of the global events we’ve just gone through? We know we need to be agile and nimble to help clients through these challenges.”