Facilities professionals have a lot of great training opportunities available to us. In 2012, I decided to pursue IFMA’s Sustainability Facility Professional (SFP) certification. To do that I enrolled in a class that was offered in our area and taught by our esteemed instructor, Larry Morgan. This curriculum and class are the best, most valuable training available for the facilities professional. Everyone who is serious about facilities management as a profession needs to take this class and earn this credential.
What is the Sustainability Facility Professional (SFP)?
First, what exactly is an SFP? It is a fairly new credential offered by IFMA that goes beyond certifying a building design. It provides facility professionals with the tools that allow us to develop and implement plans that improve the facility’s impact on the environment and its occupants—not just today, but into the future. When you become an SFP, you gain a key leadership role in creating, managing, and operating sustainable facilities.
The SFP training program consists of 3 modules. The first module provides students with a solid foundation (developing strategy and obtaining organizational alignment) that the other two modules build on. The second module covers important aspects for managing sustainable facilities, including policy development, change management, performance management tools, finance, and procurement. The final module, Operating Sustainable Facilities, dives into details that you, as a sustainability facilities professional, need to learn and apply in your FM work, including learning sustainability practices and proven ways to get your projects approved.
For more details about the SFP program, please go to: http://www.ifmacredentials.org/sfp
Why You Need the SFP
Now that you know what the SFP is, you are may be thinking – who needs it, why bother? Well, here are three very good reasons why:
- Your customers want it – they expect, demand and deserve the healthiest work environment possible. The SFP credential will provide you with valuable tools that will allow you to develop and implement sustainable programs into your facilities.
- Your boss wants it – I’m sure that your boss likes healthy work environments as well, but chances are he or she also likes eliminating waste and saving money. Earning the SFP credential will provide you with the financial tools that are needed to develop and implement sustainable capital initiatives.
- The rest of us want it – we all know that there are a limited number of natural resources on this planet and that we all need to find ways to reduce our carbon footprint. Therefore learning ways to manage facilities more sustainable will benefit all of us and the rest of the planet.
Since earning my SFP credential, I manage facilities with a new perspective. How can I accomplish everything I did previously, but now with do it in a more sustainable way? From implementing paper reducing programs to obtaining capital funding for electric vehicle charging stations, the SFP has given me the direction and tools that I need to manage facilities more sustainably. What could be better than that?