There is a substantial need for more diverse, flexible office space in order to attract and retain tenants. Why? More and more employees expect flexibility where they work, be it through policy or the physical office building itself.
Hospitable, consumer-first workplace experiences are being used to foster short- and long-term tenant satisfaction. Because of this, more and more property owners are looking to place the needs and pain points of tenants and their employees at the center of the workplace experience, and for good reason. 26% of respondents in a recent IBM study left their jobs in search of a workplace with more benefits and support for their well-being.
Supporting modern tenant needs means that the role of property management is also changing. Renovated lobbies and sparkling facilities will not cut it anymore, forcing property teams to actively engage those who work in their buildings to determine what will bring the most value to in-person office space. This has become especially crucial throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, where the disconnect between superiors and employees at work has widened dramatically.
A truly robust tenant engagement strategy needs to go beyond a building’s physical amenities and services, by blending the digital and physical environments to give tenants more choice and more value throughout their work day in a highly personalized manner.
What Prioritizing Tenant Engagement Looks Like
This shift in the industry is nothing new: leading commercial real estate (CRE) companies, such as Lincoln Property Company and Nuveen, are creating unique new roles that redefine what it means to manage a property.
Tenant engagement managers, for example, have a distinctly different set of responsibilities from property managers. Their responsibilities go beyond building operations, instead focusing on all things tenant satisfaction. They may help lease a property, plan and execute on-site events, or communicate directly with tenants for their daily needs.
Alesia Sanganoo, Tenant Engagement Manager at 25 Massachusetts Avenue in Washington, D.C., sat down with us to discuss some of the ways she engages tenants. Alesia’s role goes beyond your typical concierge services in our nation’s capital:
- She facilitates tenant-focused experiences: “We’ve successfully run programs like having an ice cream cart come on-site, a dog adoption day, Father’s Day and Mother’s Day events, graduations, and so on. It’s a constantly rotating schedule of programming.”
- The property’s tech-enabled approach helps attract and retain tenants: “[I’m] particularly useful on leasing tours, because I have a lot of perspective on what tenants really like and what the space can be used for. We showcase these events and details through our building app, which has also been incredibly helpful.”
- Hospitable experiences help make employee’s lives easier: “It’s such a necessary approach to identify people’s needs while at work to make the biggest part of their lives as easy and enjoyable as possible. Offering hospitality-first experiences means we also take a wellness approach, which can help create more productive environments.”
For Alesia, tenant satisfaction goes beyond run-of-the-mill office facilities and weekly happy hours. She’s also an expert in tenant experience software, leveraging engagement apps to engage her building community and go above and beyond tenant expectations.
A Sure Shot: Iterating With Tenant Feedback
In her interview, Alesia makes a notable declaration: “The events we put on are not just social in nature, they are based on the analytics and feedback we get from a diverse tenant base.”
This approach — which is crucial for any tenant-focused property team — reveals how real-time tenant feedback can fuel your engagement strategy. While it may seem obvious to some, many commercial real estate firms are still not taking a data-driven approach in their long-term strategy and vision — costing them time and money commonly associated with guesswork.
So how is Alesia, and other tenant engagement managers like her, making smarter building decisions? Building analytics software. Building apps can be used to gather tenant feedback that better inform your CapEx and OpEx investments. For instance, the HqOS Amenities & Experiences, Programming, and Order Ahead dashboards are often used by our customers to ensure that their tenant engagement budgets are being deployed efficiently and that they’re providing the most desired amenities for their building population.
These innovative tools help tenant engagement and property managers alike create experiences that make sure modern tenants are part of a “community and a family, not just a workspace.”
For more insights from tenant engagement managers, property managers, and others in the CRE space, check out our Conversations blog series here.