Registration is now open for Greenbuild 2023 in Washington, DC   Register

Facilities manager

Facilities managers plan, execute, and manage the physical workspace. The roles and responsibilities of facilities managers are typically both strategic (staffing, property, equipment and services planning and service delivery) as well as tactical (day-to-day supervision of related services, systems and assets).

Quick facts: Facilities manager
2021 Median Pay $97,930 annual; $47.08 hourly
Typical Entry-Level Education Bachelor's degree
Number of Jobs, 2021 109,100
Job Outlook, 2021-31 4-7% (average)
Employment Change, 2021-31 9,900
Source O*Net

The workspace includes real estate, construction, capital and operational budgeting, procurement, security, daily operations, and sustainability of buildings and commercial interior spaces. In an existing building, they can enhance the performance of buildings by establishing a baseline and then determining what data to gather and analyze to benchmark and improve. The facilities manager’s role on a new construction or major renovation project of a building or commercial interior space involves working closely with the architect, general contractor, building engineers, and stakeholders to develop the space to meet its functional needs.

How to become a facilities manager

Facilities managers typically have a bachelor’s degree. Some universities offer degrees in Facility Management, but you may also obtain an undergraduate degree in the field of business, technology, engineering, psychology, building science, or sustainability, and then pursue a professional certificate in Facility Management, which is offered by several universities. Large construction firms increasingly prefer candidates with both construction experience and a bachelor’s degree in a construction-related field.

Facilities managers are typically responsible for and must manage the building lifecycle from inception to disposal, therefore previous experience in any aspect of the lifecycle is advantageous. Individuals who enjoy learning and who are energized by expanding their knowledge and skills across the topics of business, technology, process and human behavior and needs are well-suited for careers in facilities management.

  • Building engineer
  • Building maintenance mechanic
  • Energy auditor
  • Environmental engineering technician
  • Property manager
  • Project manager
  • Procurement/purchasing professional
  • Space planner or interior designer
  • Architect or workplace strategist
  • Industrial hygienist or environmental scientist
  • Consultant, especially in engineering and technology

Education and resources

Access courses and resources to learn about green building and sustainability concepts related to facility management.

Online courses

Stay up to date on the latest developments in green building through access to online courses with an annual subscription to the USGBC course catalog.

Role on a LEED project

Sustainability certification of a new space requires the facilities manager to select sustainable materials, gather data to document energy and water efficiency, write narratives, and develop policies for sustainable operations and maintenance, green cleaning, indoor environmental quality, purchasing and waste, human experience, and pest control management.

LEED is the most widely used green building rating system in the world. Available for virtually all building types, LEED provides a framework for healthy, highly efficient, and cost-saving green buildings. LEED certification is a globally recognized symbol of sustainability achievement and leadership.

Accessibility Tools