CHOOSING A CAREER / SEP. 28, 2014
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How to Become a Utility Manager in the UK

Utility Manager in the UK

Currently, it’s no longer sufficient for organizations to run their property and various other property-based assets. To gain maximum output, they must be managed efficiently and economically. This brings out the need for a utility manager. Utility managers are responsible for ensuring that utility systems in various trades are installed correctly and are in good working condition and strive towards boosting efficiency and reducing operation costs.

What Do Utility Managers Do?

As a utility manager, it is your duty to:

  •         Manage renovations, refurbishment and office moves
  •         Ensure building adherence to safety and health standards
  •         Manage maintenance and general upkeep activities
  •         Provide advice on energy efficiency
  •         Manage budgets and keep payment records
  •         Manage services such as waste disposal, catering, cleaning and parking
  •         Negotiate the best deals with suppliers and contractors
  •         Manage office systems such as office equipment and IT
  •         Manage security
  •         Plan best utilization and allocation of resources and space for new buildings or re-organize current structures
  •         Manage and lead change to core activities receive minimal disruption
  •         Investigate accessibility  and appropriateness of options for new properties
  •         Calculate and compare costs for required services and goods to gain optimum value for money

Salary

Earnings for utility managers vary with many factors such as sector, location and employer. Below are their median annual salaries in various regions:

London

 

£59,000

South East

 

£48,000

East of England

 

£47,000

South West

 

£44,000

North West

 

£44,000

East Midlands

 

£42,000

North East

 

£42,000

Yorkshire and The Humber

 

 

£41,000

West Midlands

 

£41,000

Source: CIC

Skills

The career of a utilities manager requires you to:

  •         Be able to manage a complex and varied workload
  •         Be able to control large budgets
  •         Have excellent client and customer management skills
  •         Have good organizational skills
  •         Have outstanding oral and written communication skills
  •         Have technical knowledge in construction services
  •         Have proper judgment and decision making abilities
  •         Be highly competent in science, engineering, math and technology
  •         Be able to cultivate working relationships with various people

Qualifications

To become a utility manager, you require a combination of appropriate qualifications and experience needed for utility managers. These include soft management skills as well as hard technical skills connected to buildings and property. For instance, you might have a competitive advantage if you are skilled and experienced in IT installation, building services engineering, and management practice in hospitality, the armed forces or security. Important qualifications include:

  •         HND, degree or foundation degree in facilities management
  •         A bachelor’s degree in a related specialty such as management and engineering
  •         Related professional qualification in areas such as surveying

Alternatively, you can work your way up the hierarchy to a utility management position by receiving in-house training. For instance, you might find an apprenticeship program in utilities management to be helpful. If you pursue this training, you might also consider gaining professional qualifications such as a Certificate/Diploma in facilities Management.

It is advisable to obtain a health and safety qualification to increase improve your prospects. You might find qualifications such those offered by the NEBOSH or IOSH to be useful. With experience, you can seek postgraduate training to improve your skill set. This will not only boost your employability but will also make you eligible for senior positions in training and management.

Career Prospects

Typical employers for utility managers include space management, security, catering and vending, health and safety, procurement and contract management and building and grounds maintenance sectors. They can also work in many industries in numerous job titles such as estates, asset, operations, technical services or property managers.

If you enjoy organizing and have excellent client and customer management skills, this could be a perfect profession for you.

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