How to become a facilities manager in Australia
4 methods and a bonus tip for breaking into a career in facilities management.
If you are thinking about your career or want to pivot or find something new, facilities management is a great option. It is a lucrative career, with top earners bringing home up to $150k in annual salary.
Getting into facilities management can seem tough, especially if you don’t know much about the role. But, with the right advice, you can give yourself a great chance.
We are keen to give away as much useful advice as we can here at Matshop, and facilities managers are one of our main client groups. We are also based in Australia, so here is some information on how you can become a facilities manager in Australia.
But first, what is a facilities manager?
A facilities manager is – quite literally – someone that manages the facilities in an area. That is usually a building or public space, but it could be a swimming pool, a construction site or a stadium. Facilities managers are needed in any on-site business.
Their main role is to maintain the building or area to ensure it always meets health and safety regulations. Sometimes, this involves ordering new non slip mats or making sure lift mats are fire retardant. Other times, it means managing the budget for event set up.
Facilities managers can work alone or as part of a wider operations team. They may report to the chief operations officer or directly to the CEO. The tram structure depends on the size and structure of the company a facilities manager works for.
How to become a facilities manager (4 methods to try)
Facilities management is not a role that you need a degree for. In fact, you do not need any formal training to get started. As with any job, it is easier to get a head start in a smaller company and work your way up or move to larger ones once you have more experience.
Some good starting points
Cold call an SME
Despite what some salesmen might say, cold calling is not dead. It also doesn’t have to involve actual calling anymore, although we do recommend picking up the phone if you can get to that stage. Reaching out to prospective employers comes across as proactive and confident.
Reaching out to SMEs (small to medium enterprises) that you see yourself working for is a great way to get your name out there at the very least. At best, they are thinking about hiring a junior facilities management role but haven’t had time to create a job ad yet!
LinkedIn is the best place to cold call, and a month-long free trial of Sales Navigator lets you send heaps of messages to the perfect people for free. Reach out to people that are likely to be hiring facilities managers: internal recruiters, chief operations officers and managing directors.
Find a recruiter
The next best way to find any role is to get someone else searching for you. External recruiters have access to roles that aren’t published on job boards, so you always stand more of a chance when you go through one.
A recruitment consultant can also match you to roles that you are best suited for, saving you the time and effort of applying to companies that won’t even consider you.
Search job boards
It’s not typically the avenue with the best chance but searching job boards can be a gold mine. Our main advice is to constantly check the boards and apply for roles as soon as you see them. Placing yourself in the first round of contestants is always preferable.
Also, make sure your CV and cover letter stand out. The reason job boards are not the highest converting spaces is the high volume of applicants that view each role. Your CV and cover letter are what get you an interview (or not).
Ask your network
This might be your LinkedIn or your current workplace, but someone in your professional and personal network is likely to know someone that needs a facilities manager. Like cold calling, it is always better to ask before the organisation posts an ad.
Write a post stating that you are looking for work or looking for a career change. Posts spread through social media like wildfire, and you never know who might pick it up. You can also keep an eye out for potential openings by following people and companies you would like to work for.
Increase your chances
Up your game with a professional facilities management qualification.
It is not essential and work experience will always look more impressive than education, but sometimes it can help you stand out. Plus, professional training teaches you the skills you need for the job, which some employers value highly.
The best qualification to enhance your facilities management skills is a diploma. Diplomas work well because they feed into industries, whereas most bachelor’s degrees are purely academic with an emphasis on theory.
A quick Google search of facilities management diplomas in your area will show you which universities offer qualifications to suit you. Other names for similar courses are property management and operations management.
If you live in regional Australia or think you might struggle to afford to study on campus, the open university offers cheap diplomas that are 100% online.
So, what’s stopping you?
If you think facilities management might be a great career choice for you, then go ahead. It’s an important role that offers autonomy and the chance to apply problem-solving skills. The best part about being a facilities manager is that you can get to work with mats!
For more information on the types of mats that facilities managers work with, check out our range of safety mats. Or, browse by industry to see which mats suit which application. Shopping centres, schools and retail all have different requirements for a facilities manager.
As always, the matxperts are on hand waiting to help you out with your mat-related inquiries. They can’t help you get a job, though. That’s on you!