fm credentials

Earn More Money with an FM Credential

  April 15, 2021

In a world that increasingly demands professionalization, facility managers — like all others — are being called upon to produce their bona fides. Credentials are differentiators signaling to others in the industry that an FM has expertise as well as initiative. But credentials are more than cachet: The training behind them is invaluable to helping facility professionals become experts across a wide spectrum of competencies. 

“In the next 10 years, credentials may be something that’s a standard requirement when you are hiring someone for a facility management position, particularly at the upper levels,” says Stormy Friday, president of The Friday Group. In addition to augmenting a facility professional’s knowledge and skills, a credential assures people that a facility professional is keeping up with their profession, says Friday. Moreover, statistics show that people with credentials have the opportunity to earn between $3,000 and $5,000 more per year in salary simply by having a credential. 

“A credential allows you to demand more money and probably get it,” says Friday.

The first credential a young facility professional may obtain is a college or university degree in facility management, says Friday. For example, degree programs can be found within schools of architecture, engineering, or design, or they may be freestanding programs. Such degrees provide the foundation for a career in the facilities industry, while a credential provides “specific information in certain areas and is much more concentrated,” says Friday, and can be obtained in a short period of time. 

A wide range of credentials are available, but it’s important to understand the difference between a certificate and certification, says Bill Kent, executive director for the Association of Energy Engineers (AEE). A certificate involves taking a training class or classes and then passing an exam. Once earned, the certificate is a permanent credential that does not require renewal. A certification program covers a body of knowledge and areas of competency and generally requires a combination of education and work experience to meet eligibility requirements to begin training, says Kent. After passing an exam for a certification, the professional gains a credential that must be regularly renewed by fulfilling continuing education requirements.

There is no such thing as a bad credential, and which one to choose depends on many factors. According to Friday, a comparatively small investment in time and money yields a large payoff in terms of learning and potential salary increases. 

“The important thing is that you get one,” says Friday, a credential advocate. “I am hoping that in the future it will be a requirement from hiring professionals.”

To read about 7 credentials available to facility managers, check out our new premium content product, fnPrime. With an fnPrime membership, you get access to dozens of premium articles, webcasts, videos, and ebooks. And throughout the year, you’ll get discounts on events and invites to exclusive member-only functions. Sign up today for $199 a year or only $19.99 a month. 


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