The FM frontline

Maximising and improving FM provision

by Jeremy Peters

By Dennis Markey, Chief Operating Officer

You’ll all now be aware of the company’s Facilities Management rationalisation which went into the mobilisation stage on 1 April 2016 and continues to make progress.

When we first set out to rationalise our FM contracts, many people were understandably dubious. However, we’ve now scaled down over two thousand separate contracts and all the inconsistencies they entailed, to fewer than 20 contracts that enable standardised relationships and provide positive outcomes for customers, suppliers and NHS patients.

By reducing the number of contractors we employ and setting a standard service specification, this process is driving efficiencies for the NHS, while making it easier to manage and control contracts. Our FM teams have already saved millions for the taxpayer which will release funds for patient care.

This is a fantastic achievement for our FM teams and I cannot thank them enough for their continued dedication and hard work. This process of change will set a new standard for FM operations across the industry.

New providers for both ‘Hard’ and ‘Soft’ FM contracts have been announced and as we continue to work closely with our new contractors to implement new agreements, structures and new ways of working, I wanted to share with you some of the comments and feedback I’ve received from a variety of stakeholders on their view of the change and how it’s impacted them, their colleagues and their organisation.

FM rationalisation feedback


“Thanks to you, Charles and the team for your efforts on the FM procurement. Much of the anxiety has been somewhat calmed by the professionalism of both the NHSPS transition team, Derek Beck and the supply chain which has been engaged on a proper commercial and legal basis. The feedback thus far has been complimentary with many senior long term NHSPS employees embracing the change in a very positive fashion.”
– Paul Hanrahan, Executive Director – Property, CHP.


“There have been many positives and lessons learnt on the continuing journey of FM rationalisation. The internal channels that were put in place to support colleagues and improve communication throughout the process, helped ensure a consistent approach and provided some team morale, enabling a shared understanding of what FM is, how it is delivered, what it costs and importantly the impact of this change on our customers.”
– Chris Palmer, Senior FM Business Manager – East, NHS Property Services.


“We are very pleased to have been awarded this landmark contract. We are looking forward to working in partnership with NHS Property Services in the years ahead to improve the efficiency of the facilities management services provided to their wide range of buildings across England.”
– Ruby McGregor-Smith CBE, Chief Executive, Mitie.


“This has been a pivotal period in our transition as we embark on our mission to become a professional and legitimate FM service provider to our NHS colleagues and patients. It is an exciting time for us as an organisation and a management team, by strengthening our contracted service provision and developing our in-house service provision we are strengthening our customer relations to ensure they are at the heart of our services.”
– Frances Beckett, Senior FM Business Manager – North West, NHS Property Services.


Outstanding CQC inspection

As the mobilisation continues, we still need to ensure we are providing efficient FM services to our customers and it’s great to receive positive feedback, like we’ve recently seen in Northumberland. I’d like to thank our FM colleagues in the North, who helped Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust secure an ‘outstanding’ rating during a recent Care Quality Commission inspection.

Several factors were given by the CQC for the outstanding rating, with specific references to the cleaning service which is provided by NHS Property Services to community healthcare premises – “Patients received care in a clean, hygienic and suitably maintained environment.” – The report contains a lot more detail but I’d like to take the opportunity to thank Paul Swansbury, John Thompson, Karen Smith and the whole domestic team for their effort in supporting this outcome. It’s great what we can achieve when we work closely with our customers and I’d like to congratulate the Trust and everyone involved.


As always, I’m keen to hear your views on any aspect of the work we do at NHS Property Services. Please contact me and I will respond to you directly.
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