By Anne Cosgrove
From the February 2018 Issue
Facility management is a profession well-suited for those who are comfortable taking the lead on projects, large and small. And as the scope of facility management has evolved, this quality has become all the more important. Often heard throughout the industry these days is that facility departments are being called upon to “do more, with less.” At adidas North America in Portland, OR, Kirk Beaudoin, FMA, RFMP, LEED Green Associate, took on this task with gusto upon joining the company in 2012 as facilities manager of retail stores across the United States.
Upon his being hired Beaudoin recalls, “Our vice president of retail told me, ‘Make whatever changes you feel are necessary. Nothing is off limits’.”He took that to heart, and perhaps also his new company’s slogan at the time—Impossible is Nothing—to map out the future of his facilities department. There were just over 100 adidas retail stores across the U.S., totaling 850,000 square feet at that time, and without a dedicated facility manager, these locations were being managed by the company’s construction staff in concert with store staff.
As a team of one, Beaudoin embarked in his new position with a systematic approach—identifying items requiring immediate attention, while also evaluating long-term goals. A significant early focus was to address the backlog of work orders, as did developing a rapport with the field, notes Beaudoin. But once expectations were set and new standards established, he began moving the adidas retail facilities management operation from a reactive fix “eventually” model, to a quality support/service department. For this accomplishment, and the resulting initiatives and efficiencies that continue to flourish, Beaudoin is this magazine’s 2018 Facility Executive of the Year.
Setting The Ground Rules
“The starting point was early implementation of the facilities model,” Beaudoin explains, “and that included the creation of a facilities specific mission statement, and list of values.” He introduced a mission statement to guide his work: “To provide exceptional facilities support and efficiently maintain the built environment to ensure a premium consumer experience.” This mission, along with six values serve as daily reminders: Identify sustainable and innovative solutions; Protect and maintain company assets; Foster healthy partnerships; Be easy to do business with; Never stop learning; and Be Great!
With limited bandwidth, Beaudoin’s facility management model has a strong focus on managing external vendors. He points out, “We depend heavily on our vendors in the field, so quality partnerships are imperative. It’s all about the relationships, communication, and setting clear expectations.”
As he assessed the vendors serving the adidas stores, Beaudoin had a laser-like focus on the value of vendor relationships and communicating his expectations. “We created onboarding documents that we share with our vendors, which we revisit frequently,” he explains. “At the heart, the first and most powerful of these documents is our mission statement. We share these with vendors to provide insight into our thought process and these reverberate within our most successful service providers who embrace the partnership with aspirations to excel.”
He continues, “From the start, we emphasize that the vendors must be able to execute across all these areas, it’s not solely about being great at performing the actual service.”
Beaudoin expects stellar service from his vendors, and that is accompanied by his recognition of the valued role those service providers have in the overall success of adidas stores across the U.S. “The result of this model and an ‘open door’ management style is we have group of vendors that exceed expectations, that are long time partners who take pride in maintaining our fleet of stores.”
Impact Throughout The Portfolio
Being hired by, and reporting directly to the head of construction gave Beaudoin the proverbial “seat at the table”, which resulted in opportunities to participate in defining new standards on new store construction.
Eventually, Beaudoin took on the facilities management responsibilities for additional adidas affiliate brands, Reebok, Rockport, Mitchell & Ness, & TaylorMade, as well as flagship stores in New York for the NBA and NHL. At the peak, he was overseeing 330 stores; today, his responsibilities include 235 stores totaling 1.7 million square feet, comprised by the adidas and Reebok brands.
“We’ve implemented many key improvements,” says Beaudoin. Lighting retrofits in existing stores was an early initiative, converting track lighting in the 100+ sites from ceramic metal halide lamps to LED spotlights. The project resulted in a reduction of over two million kWh of energy per year, or a savings of $245,000 per year on the utility budget, with a 2.5 year payback.
2018 Winner Profile
Created and formalized facility management department.
- Type of Facilities:
235 retail locations.
- Square Footage:
- Annual Budget:
$13 million (maintenance/repair, and utilities); $1 million (CapEx projects).
2018 FEY Judges
Charles Carpenter: CFM, Facility Executive Contributor
Ralph Linne: Director of County Facilities, Hamilton County OH (FEY Award 2016)
James (J.B.) Messer: Chief Facilities Officer, Community College of Allegheny County (FEY Award 2013)
Fred Reddig: Director of Facilities, Detroit Lions Ford Field (FEY Award 2017)
Maria C. Vickers: Facility Services Lead, Willis Towers Watson
Another area for opportunity was HVAC. With 300 rooftop units across the fleet, Beaudoin implemented a proactive replacement program, targeting end of life equipment, and replacing in the off season. At the same time, he standardized a single brand for replacements. Proactively replacing units also removes equipment running R-22 refrigerant from the fleet faster, notes Beaudoin.
Units have been proactively replaced at 26 stores, and with the store count increase, the current adidas fleet has over 500 units. The current average age of units is eight years old, and the percentage of units that are 15 years old or older has dropped from 13.5% to 11%.
“Our replacement program was recognized by the Department of Energy’s Better Buildings Alliance,” Beaudoin shares. “We received an award for ‘Most innovative RTU management approach’ and Leadership in the 2014 Advanced RTU Campaign.”
A most recent initiative was to install wireless thermostats in stores, that can be controlled remotely. Researching the options, Beaudoin identified ecobee Si as a promising choice. A pilot test was run in a store to measure the results of year over year utility consumption. A 15% reduction was discovered and they proceeded to a larger scale roll out. “We installed the thermostats in about 100 adidas stores between February and May 2017,” says Beaudoin.
He adds, “Comparing utility bills for June, July, and August in 2017 to the same period in 2016, we see an average reduction of 9.8%. For stores that didn’t have the equipment installed, we see an increase of 3.3% over the same period. While weather normalization wasn’t factored into comparisons yet, it is promising to see favorable savings.”
In late 2016, Beaudoin hired an associate facilities manager, Patrick Koehler. He says, “Patrick is a great addition to the team, and a tremendous asset to adidas. With a background in construction he quickly got up to speed, and has been efficiently managing the day to day service workload.”
And what’s next for Beaudoin? He and Koehler are planning more HVAC upgrades as well as fine tuning the thermostat program. “I continue to seek sustainable and innovative solutions,” he says.
Beaudoin also points to adidas leadership as a foundation of his successes to date: “We have very supportive leadership. This encourages a creative and innovative mindset, and there is a culture of empowering people to look for those solutions. ‘Be a disruptor. Don’t settle for the status quo.’ And that’s very inspiring. It makes me look forward to coming to work every day.”
Product & Services Information
HVAC: Brinco; Carrier; ecobee (thermostats); Responsive Service & Maintenance
Lighting: Capitol Light; Leviton; Philips
Doors/Locks/Glass: Cornell Storefront, a wholly owned subsidiary of CornellCookson
National general trades: Genesis Maintenance; RSM Maintenance
Floor Care: Site Crew
Work Order Software: ServiceChannel
Cosgrove is Editor-in-Chief of Facility Executive magazine. Learn more about adidas by visiting www.adidas.com. Have a facility management leader to nominate for the 2019 award? Visit www.Facility Executive.com/ FEY2019 for an overview and nomination form.
Do you have a comment? Share your thoughts in the Comments section below or send an e-mail to the Editor at [email protected]