The volatility of the corporate real estate (CRE) industry doesn’t show any signs of slowing down. In fact, as the gig economy picks up steam and the workforce becomes increasingly more mobile, cost-effectively managing a corporate real estate portfolio will only grow more challenging.
If you want to be confident you’re making the most out of your properties and setting yourself up for success in the years to come, there are a few things you’ll need to do.
3 Ways To Futureproof Your Corporate Real Estate Portfolio
1. Understand Industry Challenges And Invest Accordingly
On any given day, there are two types of factors affecting your corporate real estate portfolio: those you can control and those you can’t. While you may not be able to avoid or change external factors, you can choose how to handle them. That’s why the first step in futureproofing your corporate real estate portfolio is understanding the issues affecting the CRE industry as a whole.
According to the 2019 Commercial Real Estate Outlook, published by the Deloitte Center for Financial Services (DCFS), one of the biggest trends affecting CRE executives is the growing emphasis on the occupant/employee experience and the shifting of real estate from a “physical space to a service hub.” What occupants expect from a space has changed considerably over the past decade.
Technology has given professionals greater freedom to decide where they spend their time, and coworking spaces designed with the health and wellbeing of occupants in mind have elevated their expectations. The good news? By investing in the right workplace technology, CRE leaders can exceed those expectations.
It’s not surprising, then, that many are investing in technology that improves employee comfort and brand reputation in addition to reducing capital expenses and operating costs.
According to the latest research by analyst firm Verdantix:
- 25% of CRE leaders plan to invest in air quality sensors
- 22% plan to invest in an IWMS or CAFM
- 22% plan to invest in workplace kiosks to improve wayfinding and communication
- 19% plan to invest in room scheduling software
2. Evaluate Property and Asset Performance
To effectively future-proof your corporate real estate portfolio, you need full visibility into current performance and utilization. With an IWMS that has space management software as its foundation, you’ll have on-demand access to important information, such as the locations, sizes and types of properties, as well as total square footage and square footage by building and by floor. Asset management software is another critical part of the equation for real estate leaders. With so many expensive systems and equipment to manage within a portfolio, it can be challenging to keep track of it all. Asset management offers full visibility into the location, age and useful life of every asset, enabling more intelligent maintenance.
What makes space management software and asset management software so powerful is that they also integrate directly with technologies like IoT sensors. IoT sensors capture utilization and occupancy data, enabling you to see the actual usage and performance of every space and every asset in your portfolio.
You can see space utilization at portfolio-, building- and floor-level, which helps you identify which spaces are occupied most often and which are underutilized. You can see if there are any assets that should be removed due to redundancies or underutilization. You can also see if there’s a need to invest in additional assets that are in high demand.
Space management software and asset management software give you the power to make data-driven decisions about where to make the most impactful changes in your corporate real estate portfolio.
3. Set Goals and Targets
You’ve identified the factors that can affect the performance and longevity of your portfolio. You’ve evaluated the current performance of your portfolio and established baselines and benchmarks. Now you need to determine what you want to accomplish with the properties in your portfolio.
Start by reviewing your company’s short-term and long-term organizational goals. Then, decide how your corporate real estate portfolio can support your organization in pursuit of these goals. Do you have a merger or acquisition in the works? Are you planning to hire more employees in key departments next year? What about your long-term roadmap? Are you planning to add new product lines? Expand to new global markets?
These business objectives will impact your real estate strategy in the years to come. That’s why it’s crucial for everyone to be on the same page. Work together with the executive team to develop specific targets and milestones.
Determine which space utilization metrics will be the best indicators of progress towards the goal. Once the project is underway, you can create reporting and analytics dashboards with these metrics in your space management software to view real-time updates. These dashboards will allow you to track your progress and make adjustments accordingly. You can also share these dashboards with your executive team so they’ll have full visibility into your portfolio’s performance.
Stay Informed On The Latest Corporate Real Estate Trends
Staying up to date on emerging corporate real estate trends will help you make smarter decisions to prepare for the future. When you can see what’s ahead and you have data to justify your decisions, you’ll be in a better position to make adjustments to your corporate real estate portfolio.
Discover how iOFFICE can help you futureproof your real estate portfolio. Request a free, personalized demo today.