Of all the duties of a public assembly facility manager and his or her staff, maintenance may be the most important. This is not to minimize the importance of fiscal accountability, booking, public relations marketing, monitoring safety and even management, but from a spectator's stand point, a well maintained facility can do more to effect the facility's image, create customer satisfaction, and help control operational costs than any other aspect of facility management.
This article has two purposes: (1) to educate users and promoters about the effort the arena management staff must devote to providing a clean and well-operated environment, and (2) to remind facility managers of the importance of a good maintenance program.
Many facility managers believe that maintenance is a once-a-year thing. Only when they have "dark days" do they begin to think about repairing and maintaining the facility. However, if we define the maintenance functions to include custodial functions as well as equipment and building maintenance and repair, as is often the case is smaller arenas, it is easier to see why it must be considered a regular function. Although some activities, such as painting the annual overhauling of equipment may have to be done when the facility is empty, others, such as refurbishing the entry, lobby, offices, concessions, dressing rooms, concourses, etc., These daily, weekly, and monthly custodial and maintenance tasks are most appreciated by patrons.