Belonging to a professional association and even having a designation is a great way to develop more credibility, find solutions, expand your professional contacts, make yourself more marketable and generally advance the Facilities Profession.
There are a large number of national associations around the world, as listed in my Facility Management book , and provided further below for your convenience, plus many other regional or facility specific associations. Some have their own training/designations and others don’t. I’ve also listed designations.
While most are focussed on facilities, there are a few, particularly in North America, that are more related to commercial property management, some related to condominiums or residential and others for retail, recreation, schools, universities, colleges, hospitals and even churches
In some other countries, the lines are less clear, and this is probably a good thing. However, no matter where you live, you should check out related associations in other countries to see if they have material or information that can help you.
In any case, even if you belong to a specialized facility type association, you should also belong to one of the broader industry associations. They are not mutually exclusive. No matter what your specialty, you can learn from others who have mostly the same fundamental responsibilities and issues that you do, regardless of facility type. Don’t limit yourself to networking and learning from others who are the same as you – you truly expand your knowledge and expertise when you learn from those who are different.
Two particular associations, IFMA (International Facility Management Association) and BOMA (Building Owners and Managers Association) are often confused. I recently talked to a facility manager who was considering the RPA (Real Property Administrator) designation from BOMA yet the IFMA designation is probably more appropriate, if you have to choose just one.
BOMA (and the BOMI organization that runs the designations) is primarily geared to commercial property management, meaning people who lease space to others, even though they have an accreditation with Facilities in the title.
IFMA is primarily geared to organizations who lease space (from the folks above) or own and occupy their own space for their own business purposes.
The scope of these roles is slightly different, with a range of overlap and some things that are very different. Managing office space/accommodations is mostly an IFMA thing, much less so with BOMA, for instance. My FM Pie (link) outlines the overall responsibilities, but I don’t break it out by these two associations, due to the overlap and variations.
Both organizations and designations are good quality and well-recognized in their respective markets.
As mentioned, there are many other designations (mostly North American based). Here is a listing.
If I’m missing anything, particularly from other countries, please add a comment with the relevant info.
Designations are one way to promote your skills and capabilities with your employer or in the marketplace. They usually require you to demonstrate industry experience and take specific training. Most also require you to maintain your designation through additional continuing education. These designations are either general FM or industry / facility type specific.
BOMI – Building Owners Managers International http://www.bomicanada.com
RPA (Real Property Administrator)
FMA (Facilities Management Administrator)
SMT (Systems Maintenance Technician)
SMA (Systems Maintenance Administrator)
CoreNet Global http://www.corenetglobal.com
MCR (Master of Corporate Real Estate)
SLCR (Senior Leader of Corporate Real Estate)
IFMA – International Facility Managers Association http://www.ifma.org
CFM (Certified Facility Manager)
FMP (Facility Management Professional)
CPM (certified property manager)
ARM (Accredited Resident Manager
AMO (Accredited Management Organization)
ACoM (Accredited Commercial Manager
RAM (Registered In Apartment Management)
NAA – The National Apartment Association http://www.naahq.org
CAM (Certified Apartment Manager)
CAPS (Certified Apartment Supervisor)
NARPM – The National Association of Residential Property Managers http://www.narpm.org
RPM (Residential Management Professional)
MPM (Master Property Manager)
CRMC (Certified Residential Management Company)
CSS (Certified Support Specialist)
PRSM – Professional Retail Store Maintenance http://www.prsm.com
RFMP (Retail Facility Maintenance Professional)
RFMA – Restaurant Facility Management Association http://www.rfmaonline.com
CRFP (Certified Restaurant Facility Professional).
This is a list of national and international associations.
If I’m missing anything, particularly from other countries, please add a comment further below with the relevant info.
Note that there are many more local and regional associations as well as associations that focus on specific elements of facilities or are dedicated to particular supplier services (i.e. janitorial, landscaping, HVAC, etc.)
Read my article about getting the most from your association
ABRAFAC – Associacao Brasiliera De Facilities (Brazil) http://www.abrafac.org.br
AFE – Association for Facilities Engineering (US) http://www.afe.org
AIFMI – Alliance of Infrastructure and Facility Managers of India http://www.aifmi.in
APFM – Association of Property and Facility Managers (Singapore) http://www.apfm.org.sg
APPA – Association of Higher Education Facilities (North American) http://www.appa.org
ARSEG – Association des Responsable Services Généraux. (France) http://www.arseg.asso.fr
BGFMA – Bulgarian Facility Management Association http://www.bgfma.bg
BIFM – British Institute of Facilities Management http://www.bifm.org.uk
BOMA – Building Owners & Managers Association (International) http://www.boma.org
CCFM – Conference for Catholic Facility Management (US) http://www.ccfm.net
CHES – Canadian Healthcare Engineering Society http://www.ches.org
CREW Network – Commercial Real Estate Women (North America) http://www.crewnetwork.org
CRFC – Canadian Recreation Facilities Council (Canadian) http://www.crfc.ca
CoreNet Global http://www.corenetglobal.org
EuroFM – European Facility Management Network http://www.eurofm.org
FMA – Facilities Management Austria http://www.fma.or.at
FMA – Facilities Management Association (UK) http://www.fmassociation.org.uk
FMA – Facility Management Association of Australia http://www.fma.com.au
FMN – Facility Management Nederland http://www.fmn.nl
FM-ARENA (Switzerland) http://www.fm-arena.ch
GEFMA – German Facility Management Association http://www.gefma.de
Global FM http://www.globalfm.org
HEFMA – Health Estates & Facilities (UK) http://www.hefma.org.uk
HEFMA – Higher Education Facility Management Association of Southern Africa http://www.hefma.org
HKIFM – Hong Kong Institute of Facility Management http://www.hkifm.org.hk
HFMS – Hungarian Facility Management Society http://www.fmportal.hu
IAAM – International Association of Assembly Managers (US) http://www.iaam.org
IAAPA – International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions (US) http://www.iaapa.org
IHEEM – Institute of Healthcare Engineering and Estate Management (UK) http://www.iheem.org.uk
IFMA – International Facilities Management Association http://www.ifma.org
IPFMA – Irish Property & Facility Management Association http://www.ipfma.com
IREM – Institute of Real Estate Management (US) http://www.irem.org
JFMA – Japan Facility Management Promotion Association http://www.jfma.or.jp
MEFMA – Middle East Facility Management Association http://www.mefma.org
MFS – Maintenance and Facility Management Society of Switzerland http://www.mfs.ch
NAIOP – National Association of Industrial & Office Properties (US) http://www.naiop.org
NARPM – National Association of Residential Property Managers (US) http://www.narpm.org
NPMA – National Property Management Association (US) http://www.npma.org
PMI – Project Management Institute (US) http://www.pmi.org
PRSM – Professional Retail Store Maintenance Association (US) http://www.prsm.com
RICS – Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (UK) http://www.rics.org
ROFMA – Romanian Facility Management Association http://www.rofma.ro
RFMA – Restaurant Facility Management Professionals (US) http://www.rfmaonline.com
SAFMA – South African Facilities Management Association http://www.safma.org.za
TEFMA – Tertiary Education Facilities Management Association (Australasian) http://www.tefma.com