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Striving for operational excellence


From being considered as a merely back-office set of day-to-day activities to looking at this indirect spending category as one that can drive value, the facilities management industry has surely come a long way.


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November 22, 2019
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Striving for operational excellence

From being considered as a merely back-office set of day-to-day activities to looking at this indirect spending category as one that can drive value, the facilities management industry has surely come a long way. And this wouldn’t have been possible if not for the strong set of talented people working towards reaching their goals. Over the years one can easily say that the facility management industry has been constantly evolving – utilizing the best in technology, management practices and stewardship of physical assets and the environment. No matter what the industry, facility managers are being challenged to reach beyond their capabilities and industry and utilize best practices to strive for operational excellence. Without an effective strategy for doing this, they are limited to their own experiences and will struggle to find the most effective approach. And to give an insight into some of their best practices in the industry, few facility management companies in the Middle East shared a case study which highlights one of their best practice policies and success stories.

Company: MMG, Qatar
Best Practice: Performance Management System (PMS)
Case Study: Doha Festival City by Youssef Abillama,

As a market leader in FM, MMG is a keen proponent of spreading best practice within the region. I’m a founding member of MEFMA, and I work within the group to help improve standards across the industry.

In Qatar, MMG is keen to ensure best practices are embedded within our service delivery model to all of our customers. One of the important best practices that have a significant impact to all stakeholders is the Performance Management System (PMS).

PMS is essentially a management planning tool which enables MMG Qatar to have a clear understanding of the work expected from them, and provides ongoing feedback regarding how a particular team is performing relative to customer expectations. It drives key stakeholders (service provider, client, supply chain) actively to participate and align with the client’s objects and success criteria. MMG Qatar is currently employing such a PMS across its portfolio.

The initial stage in the implementation of the PMS is to agree the weighting of individual line items that are important to the client. This weighting acts as a multiplier to the line score, so the higher the weighting the more impact the line has on the overall result.

In order to score the performance of any contract, the client and MMG sit together and discuss each line number. In many cases this is done at the monthly performance meeting and includes both the client and tenants from the building in question. Issues that are raised are recorded and an appropriate score is given.


Following the meeting the scores and comments are reviewed and added impetus is given to the areas identified, with the end goal to eradicate the concern as quickly as possible to ensure that the concern is not repeated. The results are shared across the business and are used to identify potential areas of concern and address them before they become a problem on another site with another client. In its infancy client satisfaction was scored at around 64 percent, but now that figure is an impressive 98 per cent on average.


Youssef Abillama,

One of the first projects where MMG Qatar introduced the PMS was for the Doha Festival City project offices. Our FM contract there is with Bawabat Al Shamal (the client) but we are managed by Mace Macro (the client rep).

Looking back now at the first time we went through the scoring metrics, it was a very interesting learning curve as the score we received was quite low. Our initial reaction was that we were not doing a particularly good job. However, the score actually provided MMG Qatar with a much clearer understanding of the system and its working mechanisms and that this preliminary PMS score was a benchmark and baseline upon which you continually and progressively improve upon, whether monthly, quarterly or annually.



What ensued was a team highly focused on what mattered to all stakeholders and aligned with the client expectations and objectives. MMG Qatar can now claim that our current performance at this project and PMS related scores are consistently high, thanks to this PMS tool that guides and keeps our team on track.


Company: Mosanada UGL, Qatar
Best Practice: Facility Management Training
Case Study: Recognised Centre to deliver BIFM qualifications by Mark Cooke,
Chief Operating Officer


Mark Cooke, 
Chief Operating Officer,
Mosanada UGL, Qatar

Mosanada UGL (MUGL) has been awarded Recognised Training Centre status by the British Institute of Facilities Management (BIFM). This accreditation will enable MUGL to deliver Facilities Management Training to selected staff and clients, which will result in the issuance of an industry recognised FM qualification on completion of the course. Investing in people is essential to the growth of any organisation and BIFM’s long standing commitment to engaging with employers to develop meaningful and relevant standards for the facilities management profession is clearly demonstrated through partnerships such as these. Mosanada UGL is now amongst the growing number of internationally recognised employers committed to raising the level of skills and knowledge development amongst their employees.

BIFM is the professional body for FM in the United Kingdom. Founded in 1993, BIFM’s focus is to promote excellence in facilities management for the benefit of practitioners, the economy and society as a whole. Supporting and representing over 14,500 members around the world, both individual FM professionals and organisations benefit from BIFM’s qualifications and training syllabus. BIFM’s primary focus is to embed professional standards in facilities management and they are committed to advancing the profession to ensure Facilities Management practitioners perform to the best of their ability.

Mosanada UGL is a provider of end-to-end property services to the Aspire Zone and Qatar Olympic Committee, delivering hard and soft FM services to prestigious sporting venues throughout the State of Qatar. One of Mosanada UGL’s key objectives is to attract and retain the right people to support the growth of the company. To achieve this Mosanada UGL is committed to developing its in-house training capability whilst working with external training providers to create a company that has a reputation for excelling in the provision of FM services. To support this objective Mosanada UGL has achieved BIFM Recognised Centre status for training, and now has the in house capability to deliver levels 2 and 3 (supervisor level) qualifications internally and also mentor staff up to level 7 (Senior Management appointments). Gaining this accreditation is a significant milestone for MUGL, as it gives staff the opportunity to progress their career within the business against a structured internationally recognized framework. In addition, clients know they are dealing with a professional entity that can support their own graduate FM Engineers to become qualified using the latest industry standards.

In addition to achieving the BIFM accreditation, Mosanada UGL has developed a graduate training programme for Qatari graduate engineers and is currently hosting four graduates for one year while they gain work experience. The graduates come from various engineering disciplines and are employed by Qatar Olympic Committee (QOC), a partner and client in the Mosanada UGL joint venture.

As part of the graduate program, Mosanada UGL arranged a trip in August 2014 to visit DTZ’s operations in Singapore. The graduate engineers who were accompanied by Mustafa Adra, QOC Project Director were provided a guided tour across a diverse range of projects. The visit provided an overview of key areas including Safety Management, Sustainability, Asset Management, Operations and Technology.

The program sees the graduates spending time in each department at the QOC project, undertaking typical work tasks of Mosanada UGL staff across all levels. It is proving extremely successful for both graduates and Mosanada UGL staff alike, who are enjoying the opportunity to interact with Qatari Nationals, the future leaders in the Engineering and Facilities Management fields of QOC.

Company: Averda, Dubai
Best Practice: Waste Management
Case Study: Technology in waste management by Jeroen Vincent,  Chief Operating Officer GCC and  Anthony Kurban,  Chief Risk Management Officer

Jeroen Vincent

Waste is generated by activities in all industries and sectors, and each material has its own characteristics, environmental impact, recycle and re-use options. Averda, a Middle East-based global waste management giant, believes that the rapid and comprehensive adoption of integrated technology systems can address a broad range of organisational needs—as demonstrated by averda’s partnership with Dubai Municipality to roll out the ‘My City, My Environment’ programme.

In waste management, taking advantage of technological advances can make otherwise cumbersome processes much smoother. IT enables averda to grow beyond a collect-and-transport role, to become an integrated waste solutions provider with access to vast amounts of usable data, which allows for quality control. Firstly, an integrated IT system gives averda’s workforce and customers a high level of mobility which enables a quick and timely response to clients’ requests. All averda trucks, drivers, workers, and supervisors are connected, either by handheld devices, or by computer terminals and kiosks at every site across every market. Secondly, averda manages its fleet through vehicle tracking, which gives specific details on the location, speed and the behaviour of drivers. Averda started to work with dynamic weighing on lifters that relay data on the volume and weight of the collected waste. Radio-frequency identification (RFID) technology on bins updates the company on waste activities in residential, commercial and municipal areas in real time. This data is also centrally available, allowing averda and its partners to keep track of the volume, type of waste and, how this is being managed for both quality control, and as a platform to build awareness.

Anthony Kurban

Through technology like RFID sensors, GPS monitored collection trucks, dynamic weighing, and other advancements, collecting data has become more efficient. Data that was once inaccessible is now readily available, which allows averda to monitor operations, while analysing patterns and trends in waste generation and public perception, to react appropriately in each market.

One of averda’s key goals is championing environmental awareness within the communities it serves. In Dubai, averda has provided each of the 981 villas in Al Mizhar 2 with 240-litre colour coded bins—blue for general waste, green for recyclables. The scheduled collection occurs daily for general waste and twice a week for recyclables. Each bin is RFID tagged to allow for unique identification and to draw details as specific as waste generation per villa. The data from this and dynamic weighing generates a waste usage report that is delivered to the client at the end of the month.

All recyclables collected from this project are brought back to averda for segregation, where the recyclables are sorted into individual streams such as cardboard, plastics, and aluminum. Following the success of this project, averda was awarded city cleaning and integrated waste management contracts for Al Barsha 2 and 3.

In the future, corporations and municipalities will need to take on leadership roles in promoting public awareness on waste avoidance as well as how to reduce, reuse and recycle. It is time for corporations, governments and the general public to rethink waste. This can be achieved through stakeholder collaboration—from having a smart city where there is a comprehensive waste management and infrastructure in place to garnering public support, bolstered by strong public policies in the form  of legislation.

Company: United Facilities Management, Kuwait
Best Practice: Water conservation
Case Study: UFM Achieves Efficiency in Water Use at Marina Mall, Kuwait by Eng.
Sherif Shawki Abdel Wahed,
UFM Facility Manager - Marina Mall.

Eng. Sherif Shawki Abdel Wahed, 
UFM Facility Manager - 
Marina Mall

The importance of water as a sustainable resource has always been a prominent issue in Kuwait. With desert climate, the need for optimizing the use of water in all aspects of life is crucial. At UFM, we recognize the fact that water is a scarcity resource and have set operational priority to adopt efficiency practices in the use of water in all the facilities we manage. Our practices were designed to fall under two categories: behavioral and engineering practices.

Behavioral practices are based on changing water use habits among the tenants and are typically on-going activities that require substantial and sustained efforts. UFM facility management personnel have designed tools and programs to promote such practices leading to tangible results.

Engineering practices include ways to better manage the use of water within the facility’s infrastructure. Such practices are typically based on modifications in equipment, plumbing systems, fixtures and water supply operating procedures or enhancement features such as the deployment of metering and water reuse programs.


In keeping in line with UFM strategy of applying sustainability at facilities we managed, our facility management and engineering team embarked on water saving project at one key facility UFM manages in Kuwait, the Marina Mall. The team monitored the water flow rate and the consumption volume at Marina Mall for the summer period, July through August of 2013. Data was recorded and measures were then implemented to reduce usage. Some of the key measures that were implemented included:

• Identified unnecessary uses of water and limited such use
• Determined leakage points in the water supply infrastructure
• Controlled bleeding at all cooling towers
• Ceased blow-down of cooling towers during day time
• Implemented strict control of chillers

The implementation of the water savings measures were completed within a period of two months. The team then monitoring water flow and usage for the summer period in 2014. The results were successful and a saving of 1,768,000 gallons of water was achieved in the three months period.

The savings had direct financial impact. A savings of US $4900 per month was attained against direct cost; that in addition to the decrease in cost due to the reduction of chemical use and water purification treatment. A further savings was accomplishment through the elimination of the supply of water tankers. Reducing the amount of water consumption contributed to energy saving as well as a reduction in Marina Mall’s carbon footprint. Such initiatives are important to us as a facility management company since the owner of the facility look to us for cost-savings guidance and it is UFM’s responsibility to continue to develop sustainable solutions in order to reduce cost and improve the value of the asset and the built environment.