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2022 Facilities Champion: Justin Tankersley finds a thriving facilities career after the military

Justin Tankersley is the eighth and final in a series of 2022 Facilities Champion Profiles sponsored by Ferguson Facilities Supplies October 10, 2022

By Dave Lubach, Editor-in-Chief

To realize where Justin Tankersley is now, one must consider where he was over a decade ago.

Tankersley, a 2022 installations champion, was injured in Afghanistan while serving in the United States Marine Corps as a machine gunner when he suffered a brain injury during his second deployment after being hit by a improvised explosive device. Tankersley, who received a Purple Heart in 2011, spent six months in the Wounded Warrier Battalion learning to read and write again. The story behind the first deployment, one of the greatest military infractions of the war, has been portrayed in an HBO documentary.

After leaving the Corps, Tankersley found a career in facilities management, which he began in 2014 in the credit union sector before joining Firstsource, a global finance company with offices across the country and corporate satellites in India, the United Kingdom and the Philippines. .

His specialty lies in digitizing the operations of facilities and other connected businesses so that they can operate on a single platform.

“I was involved in digitizing our entire facilities department, including all of our other geographies,” says Tankersley. “It was built in-house, using Microsoft 365 and included asset management, visitor management, data center management, room booking and a ticketing system for work orders.”

Tankersley has managed projects worth over $1 million that meet operational needs. He has developed robotic process automation that predicts savings of $750,000 on tasks removed due to digital processes.

“The lack of automation takes unnecessary time from facility professionals,” says Tankersley. “Through automation and digital technology, we are pushing the business to integrate these initiatives to allow employees to focus on higher value tasks.”

Tankersley manages a team of six employees, who oversee 23 offices in the United States and one in Mexico. Its training seminars are also used by the company’s other geographies to teach best practices across the global network.

“Success in facilities management comes in two forms,” he says. “One is to ensure that business operations are not interrupted and the other is to provide a workplace where employees truly enjoy the environment in which they work.”

It is in this environment that Tankersley challenges its employees to match its passion to keep learning and improving.

“The biggest challenge I face in management is finding like-minded people who believe facilities management is more than just a job,” he says. “As a maintenance manager, I believe that facilities management is a career in which you can continue to excel, grow and meet professional challenges.”

Tankersley’s story as a veteran continues to resonate well over a decade after a life-changing injury. He is currently writing a book about his time in Afghanistan as part of the larger joint operations to take the Taliban stronghold of Marjah, an operation which has been documented by HBO.

“I think one of the biggest things that sets Justin apart is his service to this country,” said Eric Johnson, who nominated Tankersley for this award. “Justin battled a brain injury and became the resident facilities expert. He really worked hard and continues to work despite the injuries he still suffers from.

Justin Tankersley is the eighth and final in a series of 2022 Facilities Champion Profiles sponsored by Ferguson Facilities Supply. Tankersley and other champions have been recognized for their leadership and creativity in facilities management by FacilitiesNet. Winners were invited to participate in a facility champions roundtable at NFMT Remix at the Paris Las Vegas Resort, November 2 and 3.

Dave Lubach is editor of Facilities Market.


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