BOMI And IFMA Foundation Standardize Industry Lingo

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Jeffrey A. Horn, President and CEO of BOMI (Building Owners and Managers Institute) International, has announced a partnership with the IFMA Foundation to bring a Wikipedia-like Web-based glossary of building terms to members of the building industry. FMPedia® is a dynamic, real time, open, Internet-based glossary where contributors are welcome to add new FM terms and definitions and comment on existing ones. It is meant to be as broad and international as possible. The glossary is non-commercial, supported by the IFMA Foundation, and contains no product endorsements or paid sponsors.

BOMI will merge its 343-page Dictionary of the Built Environment, consisting of more than 4,500 terms, with the existing FMpedia, an online glossary for the facility management industry developed by the IFMA Foundation. BOMI’s contribution will amount to a 300% growth in the number of definitions currently available through FMpedia. The format will allow viewers to comment on individual entries and will standardize definitions of terms used in the international building and facility management professions.

Horn said that the expanded FMpedia “will allow people from all corners of the world to be on the same page” when it comes to using facility management and commercial real estate terms. “Standardizing the language, standardizing the definitions, that’s got to help everyone,” Horn explained.

Like Wikipedia, FMpedia will allow industry members to add entries, edit definitions, and comment on entries. “The FM community will help to define the lexicon of the built environment by adding and modifying definitions as the industry evolves,” Horn said. “FM professionals will be able to collaborate to build a consensus.”

“The IFMA Foundation is excited to have BOMI’s support for this venture and to see the current FMpedia glossary double in size,” said Will Rub, executive director of the IFMA Foundation. “FMpedia has been well received since its inception two years ago, and we look forward to the valuable input that BOMI users will bring.”

Eric Teicholz, head of the IFMA Foundation’s Knowledge Management Committee and developer of FMpedia, indicated that “the glossary has more than 3,000 registered users from about 25 countries. The Web site currently receives more than 12,000 hits per month, which should dramatically increase as BOMI’s users start to use the site.”

The process of merging BOMI’s dictionary into the FMpedia database is expected to be completed by the end of November according to Michael Coleman, BOMI’s designation manager. He said that the glossary will also appeal to professionals in related fields, such as realtors, building owners, maintenance managers, and those in any area that involves commercial real estate.

“Our goal is to benefit the entire industry,” he said.

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