Business Intelligence & Real Estate
The integration of technology into the modern workplace has been nothing short of an asset for executives and management teams. From security badge and space management systems that monitor our engagements with the office to cloud services that allow us to work remotely, technology gifts businesses with a unique intelligence that enables us to fully understand our workspaces. The information gathered from different monitoring systems and other key data reported by HR, finance and management departments can be used to empower companies to make more informed decisions about their real estate. Together in a unified platform, this information is called business intelligence.
What is business intelligence and why do companies need it?
Simply put, business intelligence is the collection of data from multiple sources—i.e. rent per square foot, space per seat, space per employee, occupancy, attendance and utilization percentage—into a singular platform that applies data analytics and visualizes insights on how and where a company can improve.
Which data systems can business intelligence tools leverage and what can they tell us?
- Financial systems: Understanding revenue generation across a real estate portfolio can help you identify how different locations are performing.
- HR systems: Benchmarking the amount of space allocated to employees can tell you where you need additional space and where you can reduce.
- Lease administration: Normalizing rent expense by space allows you to compare locations of various sizes.
- Security badge systems: Based on attendance patterns, you can identify groups of employees that may be eligible for hot-desking or remote work and which locations have under or overused space.
- Space management systems: Benchmarking the appropriate number of workstations for a space can help you save on costs.
How does BI relate to real estate?
Before the advent of BI, businesses relied heavily on spreadsheets to track the data reported by different departments. These methods are slower and make it difficult for internal departments to collaborate on data-centric projects. BI tools have the ability to blend, visualize and distribute information across a company both effectively and quickly. BI can be used, for example, to tell an executive occupancy by geography or which offices had the highest attendance rates throughout the week. This valuable insight can then be used to make informed real estate decisions. BI can help businesses understand where the company can scale back or expand in their portfolios and capitalize on other opportunities that could have impacts on business operations.