March’s spotlight is dedicated to Andrew Hulbert, Founder and Director of Pareto Facilities
Management. Andrew began his FM career in 2007. He was drawn to the profession after completing an internship whilst at university - he realised he could make a real impact in FM. In 2010 he won the Young Manager of the Year award, which he is now one of the judges for. Andrew saw that one of the biggest challenges in FM was getting young people to recognise they could have a big impact, so he continues to promote the importance of young people thorough BIFM, YMF and talks to schools and universities.
How and why did you end up in Facilities Management?
I completed an 8 week internship within a facilities services SME whilst at University. I knew nothing about FM but after spending sometime within the sector I knew I could make a impact on this industry. Firstly as a graduate and secondly about starting my own facilities services business one day. I joined the SME permanently after I finished University and the rest went on from there.
What were your biggest challenges when you first started in FM?
I started in 2007 and I felt the biggest challenge was getting young people recognised as being able to have a strategic impact on the industry. At that time graduate schemes were rare and many people did not come in to the industry from university. I worked hard to pioneer the importance of young people in the sector through BIFM, YMF and talks to schools/universities. FM had (and still has) a tough time selling itself to young talent and we all need to continue to promote it to secure the future of this industry is prosperous.
What are your 5 top tips for someone about to start out in FM?
4. The opportunity for swift career progression is there. You need to seek it out and exploit it.
5. Be prepared to work hard to get ahead. There are some great people in the sector now and you need to work hard to differentiate yourself to keep progressing.
What’s the best piece of advice you have ever been given?
Don't let the bastards grind you down. FM can be a difficult job sometimes and you need great determination to keep going. If you work hard and consistently you will be a success.
What is your key for success?
People. You need to be able to adapt your work persona to be able to operate at all levels. The underlying principle of this is respect for people at all levels. Whether operative or CEO everyone is interesting in their own way and may be useful to you in the future. I have always had great relationships with all levels and it's helped me enormously in my career.
What has been the best part of your career so far?
Starting Pareto FM and seeing it grow to over nine million turnover in just over three years. When I started Pareto I had a vision for what facilities service delivery could be and I've enjoyed every second of making that happen. I have an incredible team and we serve some of the most exciting workplaces in the world across three countries. We're only just getting started but we literally #LoveWhatWeDo
As one of the judges for the Young Manager of the Year award, what qualities do you think next year’s winner should have?
We are always looking for someone who is going to take FM to the next level. We're not looking for same old. We want trail blazers who absolutely blow us away with their journey to date and where they want to take the industry. They need to be exciting and excited for what the future of FM may hold.
What would make the biggest difference to the FM sector?
Chartership would make a big difference to the sector as it would give people a defined route to enter FM. The sector is still made up of several entry routes, which is what makes it a great industry, but if we wish to attract the brightest talent consistently, then we need a defined route in.
What are your predictions for the FM industry over the next few years?
I'm already seeing a transition to Workplace Management and I expect this trend to continue. Most organisations we serve are looking to create incredible, vibrant, exciting environments that are looking to modernise the work place. This is to simultaneously attract better talent themselves but also improve the productivity of the organisation via the workspace. That to me is exciting and what Pareto is all about.
Where/what you studied:
Business Management BSc at University of Essex - graduated 2008
Workplace Management & Sustainability MSc at UCL - graduated 2012
Current job/ responsibilities:
Founder/Director of Pareto Facilities Management Ltd. Pareto FM is a pioneer of modern facilities management service delivery serving some of the most exciting and important workplaces in the world.