What is Facility Maintenance?

Facility Maintenance DefinedFacility maintenance plays a vital role in ensuring the smooth and efficient functioning of buildings and their assets. From capital equipment to commercial appliances and various areas within and around the premises, facility maintenance encompasses a comprehensive range of responsibilities.

What is Facility Maintenance?

At its core, facility maintenance is the process of enhancing the utility and value of a building by regularly servicing its capital assets, such as machinery, robotics, research equipment, and medical devices. Additionally, it involves the maintenance of commercial appliances like boilers and HVAC units, as well as the upkeep of various areas within the building, including rooms, hallways, parking lots, and garages.

It’s important to distinguish facility maintenance from other related fields. While equipment maintenance, industrial maintenance, and property maintenance share similarities, facility maintenance specifically focuses on commercial buildings that are not involved in manufacturing processes. Industrial maintenance pertains to manufacturing plants, and property maintenance relates to residential buildings. However, building maintenance aligns closely with facility maintenance, targeting similar objectives.

Types of Facility Maintenance Workers

Facility maintenance teams typically comprise two main types of workers: facility managers and maintenance technicians.

Facility Manager

A facility manager holds the responsibility of ensuring that the building remains clean, safe, and fully functional for its intended purposes. This involves creating cleaning schedules for janitorial staff, testing fire safety systems, implementing maintenance schedules for capital assets, and efficiently delegating work requests to maintenance technicians. To streamline these tasks, facility managers often rely on facility management software, such as a Computerized Maintenance Management System (CMMS).

Maintenance Technician

Maintenance technicians are tasked with conducting building walkthroughs, performing preventive maintenance, and carrying out repairs on capital assets and HVAC units. These technicians are often required to have specific certifications, particularly when dealing with HVAC systems.

Example of Facility Maintenance

Major fulfillment and distribution centers, like those used by e-commerce giants such as Amazon, heavily rely on facility maintenance. Forklifts transport pallets of products within the facility, while conveyor systems move packaged products to shipping areas. Maintenance technicians play a crucial role in servicing and repairing this equipment, ensuring smooth operations. Furthermore, regular cleaning and building maintenance by janitors and other staff contribute to a safe and efficient working environment.

Buildings that Utilize Facility Maintenance

Facility maintenance is essential for various types of buildings to ensure their optimal functionality and the well-being of occupants:

Offices: Large commercial office buildings require regular maintenance for boilers, HVAC units, elevators, parking lots, and hallways to ensure comfortable working environments and smooth operations.

Hospitals: Hospital facilities adhere to strict sanitation and safety standards. Facility maintenance is vital to comply with these regulations and perform preventive maintenance on vital assets like imaging equipment.

Universities: Educational institutions house diverse buildings with valuable capital assets, including research equipment. Equipment maintenance is crucial to maintain the condition of these assets, while facility management oversees the complete asset lifecycle and handles other maintenance tasks such as lighting, HVAC inspections, and emergency repairs.

Benefits of Professional Facility Maintenance

Increased Equipment Reliability: Regular maintenance by skilled technicians ensures that capital assets, machinery, and equipment are functioning at their optimal level. Preventive maintenance reduces the likelihood of unexpected breakdowns, minimizing costly downtime and improving overall productivity.

Extended Lifespan of Assets: Proper maintenance and care can significantly extend the lifespan of capital assets and equipment. By addressing minor issues early on, facility maintenance helps avoid major breakdowns that could lead to costly replacements.

Enhanced Safety: Well-maintained buildings and equipment contribute to a safer working environment. Regular inspections and repairs of fire safety systems, electrical systems, and structural elements reduce the risk of accidents and injuries.

Improved Energy Efficiency: Facility maintenance includes the inspection and tuning of HVAC systems, lighting, and other energy-consuming elements. By optimizing these systems, businesses can lower energy consumption and reduce operational costs.

Compliance with Regulations: Many industries and commercial buildings are subject to specific regulations and safety standards. Professional facility maintenance ensures compliance with these regulations, preventing potential legal issues and penalties.

Better Indoor Air Quality: Regular cleaning and maintenance of HVAC systems, air filters, and ventilation contribute to better indoor air quality. This is particularly important for facilities like hospitals and office buildings, where occupant health and comfort are paramount.

Increased Property Value: Well-maintained buildings retain their value and appeal to potential investors, tenants, or buyers. Whether it’s an office space, a university campus, or a hospital, a facility with a solid maintenance track record is more attractive in the real estate market.

Quick Response to Emergencies: Having a facility maintenance team in place means prompt responses to emergency situations like equipment breakdowns or structural issues. This rapid resolution minimizes disruptions and ensures business continuity.


Facility maintenance is not merely a routine expense but a strategic investment that yields a host of valuable returns. By ensuring the smooth functioning of capital assets, addressing potential issues proactively, and prioritizing safety and energy efficiency, businesses and organizations can create a conducive environment for productivity and growth. The benefits of facility maintenance extend beyond cost-saving measures, as it also enhances the overall well-being of occupants, prolongs the lifespan of assets, and enhances the value of the property. Embracing the importance of facility maintenance empowers businesses to focus on their core objectives while providing a foundation of reliability and excellence that sets them apart in their respective industries.

Other Resources

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