Five minutes with Julian Khalil, Farnek
fmME delves below corporate strategy to understand what makes the region’s FM professionals tick
What does your role involve?
My role is focused on strategic management, the financial and operational growth and performance of Farnek’s soft services in the UAE. We are committed to improving our service delivery through the application of international standards and the implementation of technology and innovation. I am also responsible for the development of our in-house training centre.
What do you love most about your job?
I have an excellent team who are a genuine joy to work with. With the mix of backgrounds and experience we have developed a great environment for learning and development and sharing best practice.
What is the most memorable project and why?
In 2013 we mobilised Emirates Integrated Telecommunications Company. It was one of our first projects covering all emirates, which at the time created a range of new challenges for us. The learning experience allowed us to develop our mobilisation skills and coordination within the company and paved the way to manage other unique projects such as Dubai Airport, City Walk and Dubai Parks & Resorts.
Where do you see the FM industry in 5 years?
Technology advances in the FM industry are constantly evolving, the Internet of Things and augmented reality for example, are influencing our daily life and will ultimately change the way we’re operating. Smart washrooms telling operatives when to clean or smart glasses that enable onsite teams to be supported virtually in difficult situations are already being used. The benefit of these practices, and the establishment of smart buildings, will make the FM industry more productive and cost efficient long term.
Energy and carbon management will have greater prominence for the FM industry going forward, government carbon reduction targets in the UAE mean it’s imperative for companies to further reduce the impact on the environment and save energy.
What is the most challenging aspect of your job?
Remaining highly flexible as an organisation, especially in the UAE market, can pose challenges. There’s pressure from clients in terms of increased deliverables but at a reduced price point. Finding the correct balance and maintaining a good relationship is crucial but can be challenging.
What do you like to do in your spare time?
My wife and I are very passionate about supporting animals in need, so we can often be found helping out somewhere locally, we also have our own dog and enjoy long walks in the desert. When it comes to sport I’m a big football fan, and if I’m not watching football I’ll sit down to a good film.