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Maxwell Stephens Salary Survey 2020 – Ten Things We Learned

Maxwell Stephens Salary Survey 2020 – Ten Things We Learned
26 February 2020

ThisWeekinFM looks at the key insights from this year’s survey, including information on salary levels, career motivations and work/life balance.

In the fifth annual survey from Maxwell Stephens, a specialist facilities management recruiter, over 1,000 FM professionals from the UK are interviewed. As the report states:

“Our industry-renowned salary surveys have proved immensely popular in past years, with Facilities Management professionals using the results to gain a deeper insight into the industry, allowing them to compare their own professional life to the rest of the sector, and feedback has shown that the surveys have been very useful is helping FM professionals to advance their career."

Let’s take a closer look at ten of the most interesting things TWinFM learned from the survey


1. FM is still a male-dominated industry – but is a change coming?


70% of the survey’s respondents are male, suggesting that Facilities Management remains a male-dominated industry. However, more female professionals are joining the sector and there are more females in senior FM positions. Of the respondents surveyed, 25% of Director/Head of FMs and 24% of Senior FMs are women.

Maxwell Stephens also suggest that the increased presence of females in junior FM roles may signal that the industry is an ideal place to start a professional career: 

“In addition to more women in senior FM positions, the data also suggests that more female professionals are joining the industry–particularly when we consider the gender balances in specific roles. In previous salary surveys, a developing trend highlighted was the increasing proportion of women in junior FM roles, and the results show that this trend has continued to develop. This may suggest that more female professionals are being attracted to the industry and starting a career in Facilities Management.”


2. Experience counts, but FM needs more young professionals


The survey indicates that there continues to be a lack of younger professionals within facilities management. Only 15% of the survey’s participants were aged 34 or below, leaving them unrepresented in the survey.  A significant proportion of the respondents (55%) were aged over 45, an increase on previous years. 


3. Head to the South 


The South was much more represented than the North within the survey, with 63% of survey respondents being from the London and South East regions. 

Maxwell Stephens claims that “a significant proportion” of the roles they fill are based in this area. This region also unsurprisingly offers a higher overall average salary across all FM roles, in line with national salary statistics.


4. Property and real estate still rule in terms of sector


Property and real estate continue to be the largest employer of Facilities Management professionals within the UK (22%), although this has slightly decreased from previous years. 

Results show a slight increase in respondents working within the finance sector (13%). The results also highlight an increase in the variety and number of industries that facilities managers work across.


5. Earn a higher salary by working in IT


The IT industry has topped the charts in terms of remuneration within the FM sector, with an average salary of £67,177. This is followed closely by the media and legal industries, with average salaries of £64,444 and £63,544 respectively. Energy, utilities and charity were shown to be the lowest-paying industries.


6. Benefits are key


From both an employee and employer perspective, the importance placed on benefits and bonuses has increased in recent years, with Generation Z inspiring a more agile workplace culture.

This trend is also highlighted in the survey responses, with 56% of respondents stating that more than 6% of their total remuneration package is made up of benefits.

Pension benefits are cited as being the most important and influential benefit when it comes to finding a new position in the FM sector.


7. Flexible working high on the agenda


Coming in at third place after pensions and annual leave. flexible working is a favoured benefit for FM professionals:

“Considering past salary surveys and our own experience recruiting in the sector, work/life balance has been a potential issue, with the general consensus being that FM is not a ‘9 to 5’ industry and often requires long or unsociable hours. This could be a key factor in the importance placed on these types of benefits and a good selling point to potential employees.”


8. Hours worked per week still above the national average


70% of respondents work at least 41 hours per week. Although this is a slight decline in the average number of hours work since Maxwell Stephens’ last survey, it is still above the national average


9. Qualifications increase in value as you progress


The majority of the FM professionals interviewed hold at least an HND or equivalent qualification (62%). Maxwell Stephens expect these levels to continue, reflecting general trends in higher education attendance. 

How valuable did participants feel these qualifications were in securing both their first and most recent FM role? The results suggest that qualifications are less valuable to FM professionals when starting their career, but may become more influential as they move into more senior positions.


10. Industry-specific qualifications count


Maxwell Stephens state that past salary surveys, in addition to their own experience, indicate that there is definitely a demand for industry-specific qualifications within FM

IOSH and NEBOSH qualifications are particularly prominent in the industry, with 59% of respondents holding an IOSH and 38% holding a NEBOSH qualification.

IWFM (Previously BIFM) qualifications are also popular, with 29% of respondents holding at least an IWFM Level 3 or above. Survey results also emphasize the sheer breadth of qualifications available to Facilities Management professionals, with over 50 different industry qualifications mentioned in the responses.

You can access the survey in full here

Picture: Maxwell Stephens Salary Survey 2020 – Ten Things We Learned


Article written by Ella Tansley | Published 26 February 2020


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