Find out more in these FAQs or explore how businesses use a managed services approach to meet their business objectives.

How can using a managed service reduce your cost of service?

Centralising the management and monitoring of services provides greater visibility of cost and compliance, preventing losses from non-compliance/over-invoicing and highlighting areas for efficiency savings.

For example, by using an automatic call tracker system it is possible to review time spent on site and therefore validate that the correct charge has been applied. A centralised database analyses ‘first time fix’ rates and therefore identifies areas for service performance improvement.

The big picture view also enables a smarter use of resources and better planning. For, example, by assessing maintenance requirements in terms of technical discipline and geographic location, it is possible to combine any non-urgent requests in a single visit made by a particular contractor or to link reactive calls for maintenance with an existing planned preventative maintenance schedule.

As response levels can be adjusted to specific location requirements depending on the business drivers, locations can be appropriately maintained to the standards set for that particular location.

How does SSS verify contractor compliance?

We track contractor activity in real time using specialist software. Every task relating to compliance is registered on the system and validated by a dedicated SSS account manager. All necessary certificates and documentation are stored digitally and assigned to the relevant asset.

How much control can I retain in the process?

Overall, moving to a managed service model tends to increase control of an organisation’s FM service portfolio, thanks to improved visibility of performance and robust management of suppliers.

The modularity of our offering and the flexibility of our processes means our clients can retain as much or as little control of the day-to-day minutiae as they like. Many prefer to simply set service levels, KPIs and targets and leave the detail of how to achieve this to us.

How would I know my suppliers are competent in health and safety practices?

SSS requests evidence that every organisation working as part of the supply chain has been assessed to a recognised health and safety industry standard by a nominated third party. SSS also requires that every employee be accredited with the specific qualifications for their particular trade.

In addition to this evidence of competence, SSS requests documents to substantiate risk assessments and safe systems of work for each specific task, including the availability of the necessary personal protective equipment (PPE), training and communications to ensure that PPE is used and procedures are adhered to.

In what way is the managed service provider “impartial”?

In a managed service model, the management of the service is independent of the supply chain/physical service delivery, resulting in uniquely position between the client and the suppliers.

As the client’s representative, the management service operates on the client’s behalf, objectively analysing and assessing contractor performance.

With visibility of a broader field of contractors (outside the client’s current portfolio), the managed service provider is able to benchmark costs and performance as well as source accredited alternative suppliers when existing contractors are replaced.

What does a ‘single invoice’ mean and how does it work?

The ‘single invoice’ model as offered by SSS means a schedule of costs from multiple contractors that is collated into a single invoice document and validated against an agreed schedule of rates. This saves time, prevents errors and increases invoicing transparency.

What is a managed service?

A managed service means the outsourcing of the administrative and day-to-day processes behind a service supplied by a contractor. These processes include the dispatching, checking and invoicing of contractors, as well as the monitoring of SLA compliance. Wherever the service supplied is not part of an organisation’s core business, this type of admin activity can claim sizable resources. In a managed service model, the management of the service is independent from the service delivery, but accountable to the client. This ensures absolute transparency and robust reporting of delivery performance.

What management information can be made available and in what format?

A secure portal enables a team to access standard reports, such as a performance dashboards and granular data relating to the schedule of works in real time. The reports are available as different graphical representations. The views are defined and limited by the individual log-in. For example different views and types of data are displayed to suit requirements of contractors and client.

Pre-defined reports include calls by site, as well as status and emergency incidents. They can be analysed by individual site, trade or cost. The reports can be exported from the web portal in an Excel format.

Each account manager is able to generate a series of reports that are tailored to very specific client requirements. These types of reports could include specific contractor performance data, accruals for outstanding works or asset information. These are available in a broader range of formats including Access and Crystal.

What type of data about client sites and assets can be held and processed?

Our databases, processes and tools are flexible enough to accommodate a range of information that can be used to assess call history, planned professional maintenance schedules, capital works budgets and project scopes, forecasting and historic spend, as well as asset performance.

Where do I start and how do I find a managed service that is right for my organisation?

A managed service offering should be modular so that any organisation can select the most relevant support for their business. Some of our clients outsource the helpdesk function, others wish to retain their existing supplier relationships and continue to accredit those suppliers against compliance and financial health standards – it all depends on the resources, competence and time available. If there is a clear and pressing need for a clearly defined area or service, a modular offering makes it very easy for companies to ‘dip their toe’ without any organisational or financial risk.

Which types of security services or FM set-ups are best suited to managed service models?

We see the best returns on investment for organisations that operate from either large single complex sites or multiple locations spread across the UK with no on-site property or building management expertise.

The model enables the local manager to focus on their core role without the distraction of issues relating to the building. The management model can be adjusted to manage any service to the building or any assets within it.

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