Starting out in the industry: should you be prepared to move?

26 Sep 12:00 by C-J Green


If you’re trying to get your foot on the ladder for the first time, I think there’s this idea that if you want a good job, you have to move - whereas I don’t believe that’s necessarily the case, especially in FM.


FM is an exciting industry; it’s about the unsung heroes who work behind-the-scenes and it’s happening everywhere. In every pocket of the UK, there’s a need for facilities management. As such, for those pursuing a career in the industry, it won’t always be necessary to move. Saying that, the more flexible you are, the more opportunities you have.


Part of Servest’s Future Leaders programme requires an element of travel - but that’s because the accredited learning scheme has been designed to give individuals a flavour for all elements of the business. This two-year programme prepares the next generation of Future Leaders for taking on a management role in the company. As such, they need to be pretty mobile - and willing to experience first-hand how different parts of the business work.


We receive hundreds of applications from every region of the country. Those who are lucky enough to be selected will spend the first nine months in Servest’s headquarters in Bury St. Edmunds working through key support functions such as HR, sales, payroll, marketing and finance.  They will then go on to spend time in each of Servest’s main operational divisions including building services, catering, security and cleaning.


Although Servest’s Future Leader Management Programme requires an element of upheaval, this intensive vocational path will, in turn, give these aspiring FMs the tools to carve out a career that will ultimately tick their boxes. Therefore, the individuals on the programme do not consider the associated travel demands to be a sacrifice. If anything, they are grateful for the opportunities on offer!


Flexibility is, of course, required if individuals decide to pursue a career with a service provider specifically. These organisations tend to be multi-site and, subsequently, employees need to be relatively mobile. Opting for this sort of career means that every day will offer something different - which some people love. For instance, the senior members of our catering division not only work client-side but they also support the operations and sales teams. This means they can be here, there and everywhere on any particular day. To them, the fact that their schedule chops and changes keeps things interesting. 


There’s a lot of behind-the-scenes project work going on across other areas of the business too, which means many of our team are often out and about. Working for a service provider requires travel, yes, but the pay off is that you’ll meet a lot of different people and spend time at various sites, working on different projects, learning an array of skills.


Adapting to change is sometimes necessary when it comes to following your dreams. Such opportunities aren’t always on your doorstep but the rewards reaped from taking the plunge will, more often than not, outweigh the personal sacrifice.  


C-J Green - Servest: UK Facilities Management Services -