International outsourcing a key trend in facility management

04 June 2024 3 min. read

When organizing their facility management strategies, multinational organizations are increasingly looking to outsource to external service providers at a global or regional scale.

The main reason for choosing a global outsourcing solution is cost, though financial control and standardization are also top concerns. That is according to research from Hospitality Group, which stipulates that large organizations often see facility management as an adjustable tool for cost-saving measures.

“The trend known as ‘Standardization of Services’ emerges as a critical factor and thus one of the main drivers in choosing a global outsourcing solution,” explained George Maas, partner at Hospitality Group.

International outsourcing a key trend in facility management

“This is particularly the case for organizations that have their core business operating internationally. A harmonization of core processes with facility processes becomes essential for these organizations.”

Choosing a single provider when outsourcing facility management services can offer flexibility and efficiency. With all the related services under one umbrella, companies can benefit from streamlined communication, simplification, and uniformity in employee experience across offices in different countries.

A centralized approach does, however, also have its drawbacks. Each country or region has its own unique set of cultural preferences, facility requirements, and regulations – and setting a standard across a whole multinational company might not always work.

“Working with a single global provider may limit the ability to tailor services to local needs effectively. This lack of customization could lead to dissatisfaction among local stakeholders and hinder the overall effectiveness of facility management strategies,” according to Maas.

Organizations need to strike a balance between efficient centralization and local adaptability. When reassessing facility management strategies, they can also consider hybrid models, which might combine global oversight with localized execution.

There are generally a lot of complexities involved in selecting and engaging with global outsourcing services. The report notes that many organizations find it challenging when a provider excels in certain regions but is less present in others.

“The key is to ensure that your expectations align with what can realistically be achieved before embarking on your outsourcing journey. Don’t let what can’t be delivered be an element of surprise,” noted Maas.

When multinationals do embrace an international view to their facilities, collaborative partnering is a good way to fully leverage the benefits of their outsourcing. In this way, they can build relationships that go beyond the dynamic of simply hiring a contractor, in which both companies share in the pain and gain.

Companies that manage facilities can then operate not just as an execution partner, but also add value around performance improvement, experience, and innovation.

With globalization and interconnectedness reaching new heights in recent years, international outsourcing has become big business. A previous report found that the global outsourcing services industry – of which facility management is one segment – will grow by around 8% for the next few years.