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Commercial Tenant Engagement: The Importance of Building a Community

22 Jun 2022

With the sudden explosion of technical innovation, and the significant shift towards more flexible workplace models, the commercial real estate sector has reached a point where physical upgrades just don’t cut it anymore when it comes to enhancing the tenant experience. These days, commercial tenant engagement has escalated to a whole new level, as the success of commercial portfolios rides on delivering an occupant-centric experience.

 

For commercial landlords or developers, investing in the end user is the name of the game. This is the smartest way to attract and retain loyal commercial tenants, and differentiate your offering.

Today’s employers are looking for premises that attract the best talent so that they can be competitive in their markets. They are seeking experiences that drive productivity. That enhance employee satisfaction and well-being. That support hybrid and activity-based working. And that support their sustainability efforts and help combat climate change.

Organisations also want data at their fingertips that will inform critical decisions, help boost their bottom line, reduce risk and streamline operations.

To achieve tenant loyalty, therefore, commercial landlords need to embrace the technology that will allow them to deliver experiences, and rich data insights.

 

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Why is commercial tenant engagement so important?

More than ever before, commercial tenants are of the opinion that the workplace experience is responsible for boosting employee satisfaction and the ability to recruit top level talent. Employee engagement has become the name of the game, so commercial landlords need to focus their efforts on making sure their tenants can deliver it.

Satisfied tenants are beneficial to commercial landlords in many ways. Good tenant loyalty boosts yield because there is less turnover and therefore lower re-tenanting costs. Void periods drop. Longer term leases are more lucrative, and with a premium tenant experience on offer, a higher price-per-square metre is often achievable.

 

 

It’s important to take into consideration that workers’ preferences are changing on a significant scale. Employers are now actively looking to provide their workforce with convenience, security and, importantly, standout perks.

Engaging with commercial tenants and enhancing the tenant experience is therefore vital if commercial landlords are to stay competitive and succeed in this evolving market.

 

How to approach commercial tenant engagement?

The approach to commercial tenant engagement will primarily be through technology. Technology that allows tenants to take control of their space, run it efficiently, reduce risk, boost productivity and enhance the comfort and overall experience of their workforces.

For landlords, smart building technology offers an all-round solution. Here’s how.

 

Enhances efficiency

A smart building enables an array of efficiency and productivity-boosting processes, from automated meeting room and desk bookings, to digital wayfinding and single sign-on access control.

Not only are these features appealing to building users, they are also highly beneficial on an operational level, presenting advantages to facilities and compliance managers, admin and IT.

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Helps fight climate change

For the business seeking to meet its responsibilities on an environmental level, the smart building can help in a number of ways.

Smart buildings incorporate an Internet of Things (IoT) driven building energy management system (BEMS). This is a platform that enables monitoring and control of the full energy needs of a property, connecting with HVAC, security and lighting to reduce wastage and keep track of usage. Sensors detect space occupancy and respond with automated actions, such as the switching off or turning down of utilities in line with needs.

 

 

 

Enables user control

For the worker attempting to complete tasks in conditions that aren’t ideal, motivation and productivity can take a dive. But with smart building technology, users can control the lighting and temperature in their own workspace via an app on their smartphones.

Users can also relay feedback on their views on the likes of indoor air quality, noise pollution and other workplace conditions, providing facilities managers with useful intel, whilst giving staff a sense of value.

 

Helps create workplace well-being

A healthy building features the likes of smart lighting and smart HVAC. Both allow our aforementioned user control, but the two also use artificial intelligence and machine learning to create a healthy building.

Buildings that lack good indoor air quality, ventilation, lighting and views may be classed as suffering from ‘sick building syndrome’. Anyone spending time within such buildings may experience symptoms such as headaches, sinus problems, dry or itchy skin, sore eyes or throat, coughing or wheezing, skin rashes, tiredness, and difficulty concentrating. None of which create an engaged workforce, and will therefore never contribute towards commercial tenant engagement.

 

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Supports flexible working

In 2022, around 4.27 million employees in the United Kingdom had employment contracts that allowed for flexible working hours. Flexible working in one form or another is certainly a growing trend, so for the commercial tenant, engagement will increase if their premises supports this practice.

The smart building supports hybrid working in more ways than one. Through workplace automation, staff can pre-book workspace for when they’ll be in the office, and stay connected to their colleagues via a community app when they’re working remotely. Smart buildings also support the trend for activity based working in the same way.

 

 

Creates a sense of community

Creating a sense of community in the workplace is vital, especially where teams are split across different offices, with some working remotely or splitting their time between the office and home.

A sense of community creates a valuable feeling of belonging and is crucial for commercial tenant engagement. Certain smart building technology has the power to create a sense of community at work using apps incorporating smart office community features, including newsfeed style local events, special offers and community chat forums, all available at the tap of a simple-to-use smartphone app.

 

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How to boost commercial tenant engagement using Smart Spaces?

Smart Spaces is a cloud-based platform that uses internet-connected sensors to manage and automate a host of workplace activities.

As well as functioning as a workplace engagement app where users can share the latest news and community events plus stay up to date with local and workplace life, Smart Spaces can place workspace environment control in the hands of individual workers, as well as give facilities managers the power to make crucial decisions, save money and reduce energy wastage.

To learn more about how Smart Spaces can help you improve commercial tenant engagement, you are welcome to request a free demo, or get in touch.

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