Top 3 Trends Facility Managers Should Be Aware Of

Marc Aiello
Article header image with the title "Top 3 Trends Facility Managers Should Be Aware Of" overlayed

At HIROC, we know our Subscribers value knowledge sharing. That’s why we create tools and resources to support safety across the system. Another way we do this is through hands-on learning.

Through HIROC’s Property Program, team HIROC curates unique opportunities for Subscribers to learn from one another, as well as hear from experts on trends and how to mitigate their risks.

Recently, Subscribers and a few HIROC staff participated in the 2024 Healthcare and Education Leaders' Forum in Chicago, IL, organized by our property partners at FM Global.

Representatives from healthcare and education organizations across Canada, the United States, and Australia gathered at this “Roundtable of Resilience” to share insights and strategize to help one another navigate the evolving landscape of property risk management.

“By listening to the key concerns of our Subscribers and learning more about the latest trends in property insurance at events like these, we aim to enhance HIROC’s services and better tailor our solutions,” said Jean Asuncion, Senior Account Executive at HIROC.

“We’re always on the lookout for new ideas to better support Subscribers in safeguarding their properties effectively, as well as build closer partnerships.”

Here are the top three crucial trends discussed at the forum that healthcare property and facility managers should be aware of:

New Challenges Caused by Climate Change

Climate change continues to impact and change our weather patterns, presenting new challenges to prepare for. With intense winter storms causing freeze-ups, larger-than-normal hailstorms damaging rooftops and HVAC systems, and heavy rain leading to overwhelming drainage systems, the escalation of extreme weather events underscores the urgent need for proactive adaptation strategies.

These unprecedented weather phenomena not only jeopardize the structural integrity of healthcare facilities, they also pose significant risks to patient care and safety. Property and facility managers should look to prioritize resilience measures to mitigate the impact of these events. Performing comprehensive risk assessments, investing in stronger building materials, and implementing sustainable design practices are just some of the ways organizations can improve resilience.

By taking decisive action now, we can safeguard the continuity of healthcare services and ensure the well-being of communities who rely on our facilities. To help prepare, we recommend taking a look at HIROC’s property risk mitigation resources found on our website, such as:

Fortifying or Replacing Aging Infrastructure

On top of the impact of climate change, healthcare organizations are also grappling with an aging infrastructure, making it even more important for delegates to share their unique perspectives and discuss potential solutions at the forum.

Both delegates and session speakers talked about how property and facility managers find themselves at a critical juncture at the moment. Important decisions need to be made on whether to fortify critical pieces of infrastructure to make them less vulnerable to climate change or replace them entirely to ensure their organizations can continue to provide quality care, while also balancing budgets and resource allocation.

Since the stakes are high, HIROC recommends including aging infrastructure in strategic budget planning and a vigilant, proactive approach to monitoring current systems. Since damage caused by water leakage due to faulty pipes and valves is still the most frequent and costly, HIROC recommends checking out our Sample Water Leakage Emergency Response Plan and Liquid Damage Guidelines to help you get started.

The Importance of Decarbonization

Another key factor discussed at the forum is the pathway organizations can take toward decarbonization. Known as one potential solution toward a sustainable future, reducing carbon emissions caused by inefficient buildings can not only help mitigate the threat of climate change, it can also foster healthier environments for patients and staff.

In the healthcare and education sectors, we learned that embracing decarbonization can involve multifaceted approaches. Installing special equipment on rooftops, like solar panels, can help reduce a building’s carbon footprint and make it more energy efficient while still ensuring uninterrupted patient care.

There are also organizations involved in pioneering sustainable building solutions, that engineer energy-efficient designs and materials to minimize environmental impact. On top of showing a commitment to the environment, these approaches have also shown tangible benefits so far through enhancing resilience, reducing operational costs, and fostering a culture of sustainability for future generations.

“I feel extremely fortunate to have had the opportunity to attend the Healthcare and Education Leaders' Forum in such a beautiful city,” said Reena Engman, Risk Management Advisor at Covenant Health.

“It was an amazing experience to gain knowledge and insight into the property insurance market. I truly enjoyed the opportunity to connect with everyone from HIROC, FM Global, fellow Subscribers as well as others from various healthcare organizations.”

“One of my biggest takeaways from the forum was how important a water escape emergency plan is,” added Engman. “My advice for fellow risk managers is to engage with your facilities departments and use any HIROC and FM Global resources available to plan and prepare for water escape.”

HIROC Subscribers gather with representatives from Team HIROC and FM Global at the Roundtable of Resilience

The 2024 Healthcare and Education Leaders Forum served as a testament to the power of collaboration, partnership, and continuous learning in addressing the complex challenges of property risk management. As we reflect on the insights gained and connections made during this event, we look forward to applying them in our ongoing efforts to support and protect our Subscribers!



Are you with HIROC’s Property Program? Request a quote today!


Reach out to Jean Asuncion, Senior Account Executive, at [email protected].


By Marc Aiello, Communications and Marketing Specialist, HIROC