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Facilities Management Journal September 2016

FOCUS WINTER PREPARATION annual budget for seasonal risk management. It is virtually impossible to ensure that a property is completely risk free but a robust winter maintenance plan, along with the latest knowledge and innovation and a quality service delivered by highly trained M' $( achieved with optimum claim defensibility, should an incident occur.” DE-ICE ‚-~( ƒ \ 2 \ ' , supplier of gritting and snow clearance services. She agrees that planning thoroughly and early }|6 ,-€ $ Z ",'$ M of our winter service season. It’s a busy time of - ' , clients, preparing our teams and their machinery, ,, M months ahead. It’s hard to believe, but summer , ( ,J busiest time of year. | , - ,#J of activity as a result of extremely cold weather at the very beginning of November, but it wouldn’t be unheard of. And, for that reason, we guarantee to be 100 per cent ready. “The stark reality is that there isn’t much time J( ( *- , days remain until summer is over, and the frostier mornings begin to set in. We, and our clients, are ready, but are you? |1 '2 \ M ( $ ',$ - Z are ready to take on the cold weather that lies ahead. 2€6946*** , preparation. Know where you stand Be aware of what service you already have in place, when it comes to the gritting and snow clearance of your site(s). Have you re-signed a contract with last year’s supplier? Are you on a rolling contract? Do you work along the selfservice lines? Or, are you in a position that you don’t have anything in place at all? Review previous service levels Take the time to review the services that you have previously had in place. Look at what worked well and what didn’t. Use these as key learnings, so that you can ensure the examples of best practice filter across into the season ahead, and are used by your service provider. Equally, you need to ensure that any mistakes previously made don’t happen again. Making a physical record of these and sharing is recommended. Know your sites Make sure you have a full understanding of your 40 SEPTEMBER 2016 sites, and what is needed at them. Which exits and entrances need to be covered? Are there car parks or any real hotspots of activity, where you cannot afford for downtime or accessibility issues? Or where an incident could easily occur? Know your budget Knowing the level of service you require and engaging with a professional service provider will help manage budgets and enable you to be fully aware of what is available to you. Any reputable service provider will always look to work to the best of their ability within that budget and to effectively communicate with you. Be aware as in most cases – if it looks too good to be true then it probably is! You don’t want to be left with the phone ringing off the hook with complaints when adverse weather hits. Start to do your research and due diligence on winter service providers With this, you should appreciate that there is a solution to every specific need; one size doesn’t have to fit all. The winter maintenance industry has matured, winter gritting and risk management is the norm and forms part of the FMs buying cycle. This maturity means that leading providers are, or should be, consistent when it comes to basic service provision. However, when it comes to bespoke requests, additional costs will apply. Standard contracts should include: Daily weather monitoring with forecasts from a reputable weather provider 4$,$ attendance Service provided using dedicated gritting equipment 9%" Transparent audit trails Trained and fully insured operatives “What you need to do is to work with a provider who is ready to partner with you, ,, ,,-, M - on your requirements. Building a relationship is key; everyone needs to pull in the same , ', Z , operational at all times. Remember, you are buying a winter ‘safety blanket’ Have an appreciation for the implications of things going wrong, whether that is legal action and/or reputational damage. Yes, setting up winter service is going to cost money, but you are effectively buying winter insurance. The money that it will cost will - inevitably - end up being a saving to the organisation. Start preparing... It’s a message we hear drummed out year after year, but probably because it’s a valid one. Don’t leave planning to the eleventh hour - be prepared and take action now. Those who don’t are taking a serious gamble. “De-ice is one of the UK’s longest-established and leading winter gritting and snow clearance specialists. The company provides winter maintenance services, helping to keep businesses, hospitals, schools and retail outlets safe and open during extreme weather. “The company has built a bespoke technology system which monitors the weather and triggers service delivery alerts. The system then ( %23' whether service delivery has taken place. In the event of a possible claim, De-ice customers can rely on an extensive service audit trail in order to evidence that a site or an area was fully serviced.”


Facilities Management Journal September 2016
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