ME’s FM industry undergoing sustainable transformation - GulfToday

ME’s FM industry undergoing sustainable transformation


Facility management industry’s adoption of next-gen technologies rising.

Business Bureau, Gulf Today

The Middle East Facility Management Association (MEFMA), a professional facility management (FM) platform that connects experts from the Arab world, hosted a forum on ‘FM Digital Transformation and Sustainable Development - Opportunities and Challenges’ in Khobar, Saudi Arabia.

The event saw the participants discussing the regional FM industry’s ongoing sustainable transformation amid rapid digital innovations. Featuring comprehensive presentations and a panel discussion, it was held on Jan.29, 2020 at the Al Khobar Business Park Tower.

The gathering came as part of MEFMA’s series of regional events staged to sustain dialogues on major market growth drivers and bring the Middle East’s FM community to an advanced level of professionalism.

Jamal Lootah, President of MEFMA, said: “Like the rest of the world, the Middle East’s FM sector is undergoing a massive digital transformation. Next-generation technologies such as artificial intelligence and the Internet of Things (IoT) are providing us actionable insights, which result in higher operational efficiency and environmental sustainability levels.

This year, we expect to see more adoption of smart tools due to their numerous benefits. Currently, as per the latest report issued by the World Economic Forum, more than 70 per cent of industrial companies are in ‘pilot purgatory’ when it comes to their adoption of Fourth Industrial Revolution technology; only 29 per cent actively deploy Fourth Industrial Revolution technology at scale; and 30 per cent have yet to pilot this technology. We are confident that the use of advanced innovations within the FM community will accelerate in 2020 and beyond.”

The Middle East Facility Management Association kicked off the programme with a welcome remark, followed by a presentation by Suleiman Barada, CEO (Middle East & Africa) of S2E Transformation Inc. Afterwards, Bassam Masri, General Manager of IDC, delivered a presentation titled ‘How Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) for buildings helps Facility Managers?’. The attendees also took the opportunity to network with industry leaders and their peers during the gathering.

The panel discussion was led by moderator Khalil Al-Refaii, Planning and Work Control Leader of Saudi Aramco.

The panelists, who discussed the event’s main topic from their domain of expertise, comprised renowned key speakers from highly influential companies in Saudi Arabia.

The featured panelists were Khalid Al Mubarak, General Manager, Tadbeir; Suleiman Barada, CEO (Middle East & Africa), S2E Transformation Inc; Dr Talal AlHarigi, Executive Director, The National Training Center for Facilities and Hospitality Management; and Turki Matoog Althonayan, CEO, Arabian Security and Safety Services Company.

“The panel discussion served as a platform to explore one of the areas that we need to pay attention to, which is the industry’s sustainable transformation in the digital era. Our top-level panelists and participating FM professionals from Saudi Arabia and other parts of the region discussed and exchanged ideas how we could maximize the newest digital tools to deliver the best FM services while helping protect the environment,” Lootah said.

The event’s main sponsor was MEFMA Corporate Member, Tadbeir, the venue sponsor was Al Khobar Business Park Tower. While the National Training Center for Facilities and Hospitality Management was the supporting partner.

The Middle East Facility Management Association (MEFMA) is a non-profit organisation established in 2010 by the Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Dubai business Events (DBE) and Dubai World Trade Centre.

The association aims to provide specialized services and help unify the facilities management sector by conducting research, organising educational programs, and assisting organizations and institutions to develop sustainable facilities management strategies, networking, education, knowledge exchange, leadership thinking, legislative provisions, and companies’ communications.

The Middle East Facility Management Association is also a registered member of Global Facility Management (Global FM), a worldwide alliance of member-cantered facility management organisations, providing leadership in the advancement of the FM profession.

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