While the real estate market has recently seen slow adoption to emerging technologies, jumping on the latest technology can help drive integral data driven decisions to make meaningful social and economic impacts.
With major metropolitan cities suffering from low occupancy rates, or higher vacancy rates for office buildings, the importance of data driven building management is timelier than ever to alleviate further projected issues before they arise.
In Manhattan alone, home of the largest U.S. concentration for this property type, office vacancy rate and available sublet space both rose to new records as remote work, higher interest rates, layoffs and concerns about a possible recession wrought further damage to an already troubled New York market.
According to JLL, the first-quarter office vacancy rate in Manhattan reached 16% for the 470 million square feet of space tracked and the quarter leasing volume is the smallest since the second quarter of 2021. Similar pain points are being felt in other top markets, such as Los Angeles and San Francisco.
So how can data drive decision making? Here are seven ways commercial real estate can utilize data driven technology to make smart and strategic decisions in the evolving workplace:
- Energy efficiency: Monitor and optimize energy efficiency of buildings by using data analytics. Make smart and quick decisions on energy efficiency while utilizing such tools as smart sensors and meteors. This will enable real-time adjustments based on occupancy, weather conditions, and energy demand by monitoring electricity, heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems. Identify areas of inefficiency and implement data driven solutions that not only reduce costs but contribute to sustainability efforts.
- Space Utilization: This can be especially pertinent as many work-from-home and hybrid models are being utilized in the workspace. Enable better space planning and optimizing facility management with tools that can provide data that can provide insights into how office spaces are utilized, including: occupancy sensors, motion detectors, and Wi-Fi tracking can track the movement of people within a building, identifying areas of underutilization or congestion. This information can be used to optimize space allocation, improve layouts, and enhance workplace productivity.
- Indoor Air Quality: Ensure optimal indoor air quality and occupant comfort promptly with data collected from sensors that monitor air quality, temperature, humidity, and other environmental factors. By analyzing this data, building operators can optimize and maintain a comfortable and healthy indoor environment. Improved air quality and occupant comfort enhance productivity and well-being.
- Predictive Maintenance: Minimizes downtime, extends equipment lifespan, and improves operational efficiency by utilizing historical data and using machine learning algorithms. Leveraging data from IoT devices and sensors, real-time monitoring can enable predictive maintenance. By collecting data on equipment performance and identifying patterns, maintenance teams can anticipate issues and schedule repairs or replacements proactively.
- Security and Safety: Enhance building security and occupant safety using data driven technologies, such as access control systems, surveillance cameras, and visitor management systems, enhance security measures in commercial buildings. The data from these technologies can help identify patterns and anomalies in turn detecting potential threats. Integration with facial recognition or biometric systems can further enhance security while ensuring compliance with privacy regulations. Emergency response systems can utilize real-time data to improve communication and evacuation procedures during crisis situations. One example is Scenera’s AI-distributed video analytics to zero image surveillance privacy for the protection and safety of individuals. Scenera is forging a new standard data platform for the AIoT industry, by combining an open and flexible architecture with an intelligent platform. The result is an efficient way to manage and analyze the data generated by connected devices.
- Sustainability Initiatives: By monitoring resource consumption and carbon emissions, companies can set goals, track progress, and identify areas for improvement. Data analysis can also facilitate the implementation of renewable energy solutions, waste management strategies, and water conservation efforts.
- Occupant Experience: Tenants and/or employee well-being is becoming increasingly important in today’s climate. Analyzing data on employee utilization of amenities, spaces, and services can inform workplace design decisions. Technology facilitates increased efficiency and happiness by making occupants feel safe, comfortable, and like their well-being is being considered, creating a sense of overall satisfaction.
Leveraging data in commercial real estate can drive efficiency, sustainability, and security by optimizing energy usage, space utilization, maintenance practices, air quality, and security measures. It also contributes to enhancing employee well-being and supports sustainability initiatives. As the workplace evolves, data-driven insights provide valuable guidance for adapting to changing needs and maximizing operational effectiveness.