INSIDE C ommercial property manag- ers in Denver already face fierce competition to hire building services engineers from a limited pool of quali- fied talent. Employment is essen- tially full, with the unemployment rate averaging 3% in the first eight months of 2019, according to Metro Denver Economic Development Corp. The firms that manage office buildings and other commercial properties are bracing themselves for greater staffing challenges ahead, however – not just in Colo- rado but across the nation. That’s because time is running out to address a looming exodus of building engineers entering retirement. Demographers have long warned that baby boom- ers, those born between 1946 and 1964, will disrupt an array of indus- tries as they exit the workforce. Commercial prop- erty management is already experiencing the begin- nings of what will become an ongo- ing, critical shortfall of talent as large numbers of facility manage- ment professionals retire, according to a series of reports by the Internation- al Facility Manage- ment Association and Royal Institute of Chartered Sur- veyors. As an industry that relies heavily on boomers for its building engineers, commercial property managers should plan now for how they will recruit, train and retain the team members who will manage and operate their properties in the years ahead. • How did we get here? After World War II, high school voca- tional classes, apprenticeships and trade schools introduced legions of Americans to careers in engineering and skilled trades such as carpen- try and welding. By 1980, however, these traditional occupations had begun to lose favor among students as college admissions mushroomed. Trade school enrollment has begun to recover since 2000, but boomers still hold the lion’s share of the blue- Tools, techniques, timing and implementation guidelines to help complete your budgets. Prep for budget season Preventative maintenance is the key to keep a building’s mechanical system costs low. Maintenance plans PAGE 15 Outdoor fitness is gaining popularity as managers get creative with limited space. Amenity trend alert Please see Page 20 October 2019 René Wineland Vice president, asset services Transwestern PAGE 19 PAGE 10 Help wanted: Career opportunities in property services engineering Katie Sakach Managing director, asset services, Transwestern Transwestern Growing a building's engineering team takes time and training, both of which will suffer as baby boomers continue to retire. Pictured here is a team of building engineers at a Transwestern-managed property.