SAS chooses pan-Nordic IFM strategy

In 2008, SAS outsourced its FM operations in Sweden, Norway and Denmark to an IFM provider – Coor Service Management. When taking its decision, SAS was actually prepared to partner with a different IFM provider in each country, but looking back, their conclusion is that there are benefits in appointing a single provider.

Bjørn Frivold heads up SAS’ FM operations and also took part in the decision to outsource FM operations.

Why did you choose a pan-Nordic IFM strategy?

The decision for SAS to outsource FM services was strategic and based on SAS wanting to concentrate on core business. We were looking for a provider that could take over all services integrated into one IFM contract. Our view was that SAS might very well have different suppliers in each country. A single supplier would be an advantage, but wasn’t essential. Looking back, though, we can see that the transfer was very easy because we had one provider. But the choice of Coor in all three countries wasn’t based on an intention of having a single provider. We chose Coor because they were the best alternative in all three countries.

What other benefits of an international strategy?

You see the benefits of having a single provider primarily in the transitional phase, when you need to get innumerable things in place and staff transferred to their new employer. In onward daily operations, a single provider can also be an advantage, because at SAS, we want to harmonise quality and processes.

What are the disadvantages?

If we had more suppliers, changing if we were dissatisfied would be easier – competence levels are not necessarily equally high in all countries. Different suppliers can be stronger in individual countries, and thus be able to deliver us a better product.