It would be fair to say that Ian Harfield, CEO of Cofely Besix Facility Management (CBFM) has been busy since the fourth quarter of 2016.

To begin with, CBFM announced in October 2016 that it has been awarded a three-year integrated FM (IFM) contract to manage two Aldar Academies schools in the UAE.

The following month, CBFM launched the Al Mareefa Training Bus, a mobile training facility developed for the company’s staff at more than 50 sites across the UAE.

December saw Harfield claim seventh place on the 2016 fmME Power 50 list. A significant contributor to Harfield’s high rank on the list was CBFM’s financial performance, which included a 30% YoY hike in 2015 revenues, with projections showing a 20% rise in corresponding figures for 2016.

CBFM’s steady growth should surprise few in the region, given the company’s wide range of services and its depth of knowledge within each sector it operates in – most notable among which is the mechanical, electrical, and plumbing (MEP) and heating, air-conditioning, and ventilating (HVAC) segment.

As Harfield explains, CBFM currently boasts “a wide range of MEP and HVAC service agreements”.

He continues: “At the extreme end of the spectrum is the undertaking of infrastructure maintenance at Yas Island, as this brings into scale the repair, maintenance, and replacement of what will become a major city’s basic infrastructure to support power, water, and wastewater to the theme parks, malls and residential areas located at Yas Island.

“On the other end of the scale, we also manage data centres that require extreme detail, precision, and preventative maintenance. These requirements form a part of the entry levels of operations, because losing power to the data centre is not an option to be contemplated.”


Planned preventive maintenance (PPM) programmes are a crucial element of not only a facility’s day-to-day operations, but also its life cycle and longevity.

Harfield points out the key considerations to bear in mind while designing PPM programmes and how these plans, if prepared diligently, can optimise an asset’s lifetime: “The key considerations when preparing the PPM plans are the condition of the plant and equipment to be maintained, and the client’s maintenance strategy.

“In the absence of a clear strategy, we would start by stabilising PPM activities, which would be followed by working with the customer to introduce a maintenance strategy that is best suited to their intentions relating to the property.

“This will include establishing long-or short-term ownership, as well as the most appropriate method to maximise the assets’ value and life span.

“A building’s internal environment, is directly related to the condition and effectiveness of its MEP and HVAC systems,” he adds.

“Obviously, soft services also seriously impact the overall environment. As for the life cycle of a facility, it is only logical that to prolong the life of a building, a balanced and intuitive maintenance regime will be the only determining factor.”