Museums & Cultural Institutions Facility Benchmarking Program

Facility benchmarking for cultural institutions and museums since 2001.

About the Cultural Facility Benchmarking Program

IAMFA logoThis benchmarking program was created by the Canadian Museum of Civilization (now Canadian Museum of History) and is designed for those who manage museum and cultural institution facilities. Over 130 institutions from nine countries have participated since the group started. The survey is endorsed by IAMFA, the International Association of Museum Facility Administrators.



How the Cultural Facility Benchmarking Program Works

The contents of the benchmarking program were developed based upon the topics of interest to cultural facility managers. Each year, we review and update the program based upon suggestions and request of participants and the input of a Steering Committee.  The Steering Committee consists of representatives from a the range of participating cultural institutions to reflect the current issues of interest to cultural facility managers.

You can contact us to join the program or sign up right on this site.  You are assigned a participant code to identify yourself in the results, and information about your organization is only available to program participants. How-to guides are available, there is a Getting Started Webinar, Facility Issues will coach you through the process if you have any questions.

Then  you assemble your data and enter it into our online forms or Excel template.  The data collected is to measure performance in key areas of cultural institutional facility management and to identify best practices and industry trends.  We use common industry data definitions which are provided on the forms and template for reference. If your data is well structured in your corporate systems or even excel files, it can be entered in just a few hours.

Facility Issues reviews and compiles the data per the program schedule and creates interactive business intelligence reports available to participants online (more on the results/reports below). Draft reports are available mid-way through the program to let you review and correct data as required. You can also download your data with our Excel template.

The program includes regular virtual networking meetings.  These meetings may include case studies, presentations on topics of interest, or town-hall type sessions where participants can ask about or share information on any topic of interest.

There is also an annual Benchmarking and Best Practices Workshop – a full day pre-conference session at the annual IAMFA Conference to review results, hear case studies, and ask questions of Facility Managers at other leading cultural institutions. (*TBD for 2021)

During the year we also run Special Topic Surveys on current issues you are facing that are not covered in the structured benchmarking.  The results of these surveys are available to benchmarking participants and anyone else who participating in them.

The Cultural Facility Benchmarking Results

The Executive Report compares several key facility metrics in an interactive business intelligence system.  The results include:  costs for utilities, building operations, janitorial services, building and grounds maintenance, building security, which comprise the majority of facility operation costs. The 2019 report had the following sections:

  • Organization & Property Demographics
  • Maintenance & Custodial Staffing
  • Costs by Type (custodial, maintenance, utilities, security)
  • Energy Usage and EUI
  • FCI
  • Rated practices

Example Benchmarking ChartAn example graph of EUI (energy use intensity) is shown above. Each participating institution is shown with a vertical bar. The various color shadings represent the quartiles and the horizontal black line is the median for the group.

You can filter the results by selected categories such as Type of Organization, Property Size (groupings) and other demographic criteria depending on the benchmarking program.

Our Standard and Prepared programs include additional reports with data on topics such as:

  • Property SLA
  • Space (composition)
  • Supervisor & other staffing
  • Cost totals
  • Sustainability by quartile (various metrics)
  • Work orders
  • Projects
  • Site & grounds
  • Security
  • Technology practices
  • Practices employed: custodial, maintenance, conservation, space management
  • General comments & more

Questions & Support

We provide online and phone support if there are any technical questions, we have instruction documents and white papers to help you assemble and use your facility metrics, and periodically hold webinars to review new features and questions.

See which participation option is best for you or contact us using the form below with any questions about facility benchmarking for cultural institutions.