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5 minutes read
May 12, 2021

Leveraging Building Data: How Commercial Real Estate Analytics Can Boost NOI

From the events they attend to the spaces they book, your workplace is full of valuable data. Learn how commercial real estate analytics can help drive tenant retention and increase revenue.

Everyone talks about how crucial data is to your commercial real estate business, but no one really tells you how, exactly, to use it. We want to change that.

Trendy though it may seem, building data can help property managers uncover insights and opportunities that you otherwise would never see, such as which services tenants use the most, which spaces are most popular, and which events are the most engaging.

These and other behavioral insights from tenants can help you refine your engagement tactics and optimize your spaces to achieve greater tenant satisfaction and higher amenity ROI.

In this article, we share the importance of data for CRE, along with six ways you can (and should!) be using data to achieve your property management goals.

What Tenants Want: Why Behavioral Data Matters in CRE

Tenant expectations have changed dramatically over the past five years. On top of traditional leasing draws like price and location, today’s tenants demand engaging experiences and quality amenities, largely to help them attract and retain top talent within their organizations.

As we look to 2020 and envision the next decade, the most successful commercial real estate companies could follow the mantra: location, experience, analytics.” —Deloitte

Location is still important, to be sure, but tenant expectations for properties now include everything from seamless room bookings, to on-site fitness classes, to ecommerce services, mobile-first communications, and more.

In short, what tenants want today is a better workplace experience.

Research shows that 77% of CRE owners have already caught onto this and cite tenant experience as a priority, dedicating as much as 39% of their operating costs to it. 

That’s where data comes in. Tracking and analyzing behavioral data is key to understanding your tenants’ needs, empowering you to improve the workplace experience and set yourself apart from the competition.

In short, having a better understanding of your data will help you attract and retain tenants, allocate spaces more effectively, and better understand the connection between your actions and your revenue. 

77% of CRE owners are dedicating as much as 39% of their operating costs to tenant experience.

How to Use Data at Your Properties

There are a number of ways that data can be leveraged to help drive innovation, retention, and growth at your CRE properties. Let’s look at a few of the key areas.

1. Monitor your spaces, services, and amenities

Whether it’s your fitness studio, conference room, or event space, keeping track of how often your spaces are being used (as well as when) gives you a clearer sense of what your tenants want and need—as well as what they don’t.  

Let’s say your data reveals that tenants use the weight room much more frequently than the conference room, for example. Knowing that information will help you decide whether to invest in new gym equipment or expanded meeting room facilities. 

And that’s just the beginning. In a mixed-use coworking or “flex” space, for instance, your data may show that hot desks aren’t being booked as often as private offices or common work areas. Based on that finding, you may invest more time in promoting hot desk availability (and generate more interest and revenue as a result), or rearrange your flex space altogether. You’ll also be able to see which membership tiers are the most popular, and when they tend to be most in demand.

Needless to say, there’s more to your property than just physical space—and by extension, more that you can measure. When you monitor the usage of different services or amenities, for instance, you’ll have a better idea of which of them may benefit from added promotion, and at the other end, which can be swapped out for something that drives higher tenant engagement, enjoyment, and ultimately, retention. 

2. Track content and events

If you’ve been producing content and putting on events to boost tenant engagement in your buildings, then you’ll want to be tracking their effectiveness. That means tracking your clicks, views, and interactions (for content), as well as RSVPs and attendance (for events) to see how well your efforts are performing.  

With this type of performance data, you can ensure that your future content efforts are focused on the topics your audience likes most. By optimizing interactions like these, you can improve tenant engagement and satisfaction, turning your brick-and-mortar properties into thriving workplace communities. 

The more data points we capture and the more insights we gain about our events, the better our chances are of creating events that our tenants not only attend but love. 

3. Track adoption, activity and reach

In addition to monitoring specific elements like space usage and event performance, it’s important to follow the overall adoption, activity and reach of your platform. Because the more you can get your tenants to view the app as the “go to” workplace resource, the more profitably you can use it to engage tenants via content, events, and promotions.

  • Adoption shows you what percentage of your tenants have signed up to use your workplace experience platform.
  • Activity shows you how often your tenants are opening and using the app—and when.
  • And Reach shows you the total number of unique impressions your content is garnering, including, all pages, articles, and events.

If you’re using Lane as your workplace experience platform, you’ll be able to see each of these metrics at a glance from the main dashboard:

4.  Collect tenant feedback 

When it comes to analyzing data, It’s not just behavioral or quantitative data that matters. It’s also important to both ask for—and listen to—qualitative tenant feedback, especially if you want to maintain a healthy work environment and attract top tenants in the future. One great way to do this is to run polls and surveys through your workplace experience platform to find out what needs improvement around your building, or to learn which needs are not being met. 

By soliciting and then analyzing tenant feedback, you’ll be able to identify opportunities for new services and other ways to improve overall tenant satisfaction. Plus, you’ve started a conversation, made them feel heard—and that can go a long way.

Conclusion

Most CRE businesses would like to attract and retain top talents, increase their asset value, drive down costs, and generate more revenue. But in order to make the right decisions to achieve each of these goals, you need to have up-to-date and accurate data about what’s working and what’s not. 

In order to make this process as easy as possible, it’s important to choose a reliable technology solution like Lane that can capture, sort, and analyze the information you need to make data-driven decisions.

If you’re ready to start using data to improve the workplace experience at your properties, reach out to the Lane team to request a product walkthrough.

Here’s to the future of work!

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