Sodexo’s partnership with the International School of Beijing

Creating a healthy environment for students in China

Published on : 3/1/19
  • Sodexo’s partnership with the International School of Beijing

    This case study was originally published on the global Sodexo website


    With more families moving to China for work, and more private schools being set up, competition in the Chinese education sector has become fierce. For the International School of Beijing (ISB), creating an environment that focuses on quality of life for pupils and teachers is central to its proposition. This includes providing a high standard of teaching alongside excellent facilities, in a clean and safe environment.

    Sodexo shares the school’s commitment to quality of life and has been providing a unique integrated facilities management service there since 2006.

    In 2013, when the school took measures to provide cleaner air across its 13 ha campus, its facilities management became much more complex. A new state-of-the art system was set to bring new challenges. But, following a competitive bid, Sodexo was able to offer a campus-wide solution using decades of technical expertise and experience. As a result, the services, tools and on-site capabilities implemented by Sodexo have helped to create a better quality of life for everyone at the school.

    The challenge for ISB

    For international parents living in China, the quality of their children’s lives and education are paramount. Many parents choose to place their children in private international schools, which offer a curriculum similar to their home countries. But with expensive fees to pay, parents expect high academic standards and a commitment to their child’s wellbeing. They want the reassurance of knowing their children are being taught in a safe, clean and well maintained campus.

    At the International School of Beijing (ISB) – which teaches more than 1,700 children aged four to 18 – being able to attract pupils and talented teachers, has become even more challenging. In Beijing the number of international private schools grew from 46 in 2011 to 104 in 2016, with each one fighting for a share of this lucrative and demanding market.

    Being able to provide the best, healthiest teaching environment is critical to the commercial success of the school.

    Since 2006, Sodexo has been providing an integrated facilities management service, which includes cleaning, landscaping, building and electrical maintenance, as well as engineering to maintain ideal temperatures, ventilation and lighting.

    When Beijing’s air quality reached a crisis point in 2013, the school took the decision to hermetically seal its entire campus and build two pressurised sports domes. This was an important step for the school in maintaining its commitment to quality of life and its standing in the market. But it changed the game in facilities management, making it far more complex and challenging than ever before.

    The school held a competitive bid among major market players, including Sodexo, to oversee its new state-of-the-art Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC) system. The HVAC maintains air quality, ambient temperatures, and water supply across the entire campus. It is central to the school’s operations and, therefore, vital to its overall performance.

    Sodexo’s solution to quality of life

    Sodexo showed that it was able to offer the best solution for the school, and was awarded the contract. Its unique positioning included:

    • Sodexo’s experience of managing complex facilities in precision industries and healthcare, where air quality must be maintained at the highest possible level.

    • An understanding that the success and performance of the school hinges on quality of life, and the wellbeing of pupils and staff. Already working with 3,000 schools in 42 countries, Sodexo knows that the quality of the environment is critical to enabling study, play, development and exercise.

    • By achieving ISO 55001 accreditation, Sodexo’s technical expertise in complex facilities management could deliver one of the healthiest schools in Beijing.

    • Sodexo’s Asset Management Framework (AMF), which received the ISO 55001 accreditation, controls engineering services at the school – making it the first Sodexo site in Asia with this accreditation. AMF is a complete life cycle analysis tool developed for industrial and medical environments, and has been extended as a global offer to Sodexo’s Asset Management Services (AMS). Sodexo has managed more than 600 AMS contracts worldwide, and it has proven its value in industrial conditions and precision environments in China.

    • Sodexo’s Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) ensure services are delivered in the most efficient and cost-effective way. These SOPs have been developed over time using the expertise of Sodexo’s Service Operations Team, and are currently used in 80 countries.

    A school environment where everyone can thrive

    Sodexo’s expertise in facilities management, backed by its Asset Management Framework and ISO 55001 accreditation, has led to greater asset efficiency, reliability and long-term cost control at the school.

    The 107 on-site Sodexo employees apply global best practice and SOPs to ensure best-in-class facilities management. A monthly dashboard of 20 KPIs are strictly controlled and monitored to ensure a high quality of service.

    As a result, the school is able to focus on its academic achievements and the success of its pupils in a healthy, enriching environment where everyone can thrive.

    Sodexo’s partnership with the school is based on a common vision. Quality of life ensures the best performance, in and out of the classroom, and gives parents peace of mind, knowing their children are safe.