Damien Kirby, BIFM Level 3 graduate shares his journey
Damien’s profession had a focus on various aspects of carpentry work ranging from joinery through to working in large building sites and in 2009 he moved into his current position as maintenance and caretaker at a major facility in Dublin.
The variety of work Damien has been exposed to since the move has increased dramatically, from a carpentry specific role to multiple responsibilities for a building. Throughout his career Damien completed short courses from time to time to up-skill but felt that he would benefit from a more formal, structured and recognised course which would cover a broad range of topics relating to facilities and essential improve his role. Damien alongside his manager began researching suitable courses and found the British Institute of Facilities Management Level 3 offered by Portobello Institute as the perfect starter and so began the course in 2016.
“The BIFM Level 3 course covered a variety of topics of interest to me and appeared very relevant to my role”. For Damien the course structure and duration was perfect. “A course with duration of one year was practical. The course consisted of 10 separate modules which required attendance at classes over a set number of evenings / Saturdays throughout the year which was very manageable while working”.
Course highlights for Damien include Health and Safety Responsibilities and Risk Assessment, Specification and Procurement, Project Management and Budget Management. For him the main advantages of undertaking this course have been:
• An increase in knowledge and understanding of facilities management and its use on a daily basis. “This has enabled me to improve the standard of facilities and services to internal staff and members of public attending the facility”.
• An increase of understanding on safety checks. “My experience from the course has taught me ways to improve safety checks each month and how these are documented ensuring issues are addressed in a timelier manner”.
• An increased confidence. “When carrying out my role, holding meetings with management, contractors and stakeholders I am more confident in my deliverance”.
• An ability to expand role. “Since attending the course I have been able to expand my role and take on additional responsibilities which include more involvement in the procurement process, responsibility for budgets and involvement in project management”.
With projected growth in work and an increase in the level of buildings to be maintained the BIFM Level 3 course is only the beginning of great things for Damien who is planning on commencing his Level 5 course in September which will bring his qualification up to management level. We wish Damien all the very best in his expanding role and future studies with Portobello Institute.