Our team is still buzzing about the fun we had in Nashville for the Building Owners and Managers Association Internal (BOMA) 2022 conference. This was our first time exhibiting at this event, and we loved meeting so many new faces.
We asked our team to share some of their main takeaways from the show. Wondering what some of the big topics were? Read below!
Improving Building Operation Efficiency
The decreasing number of tenants and, consequently, visitors has created inefficiencies in building operations. Since buildings are meant to be occupied by people, most building designs reflect such accommodations within the layout, air conditioning, and more.
As occupancy continues to decline, owners/operators are forced to literally “turn up the heat” in buildings because they cannot account for the body heat the building was designed to keep. Now owners/operators are trying to determine how to proceed without incurring additional costs. These challenges have created new opportunities for tech.
In the expo hall at BOMA, we engaged in many conversations about energy, water, and other utilities that impact building operations. Top of mind for owners is identifying solutions for how to improve energy efficiency.
Improving Tenant Experiences with Tech
Many building operators have begun the transition to a completely mobile tenant management system. With technology, tenants can better (and more quickly) communicate needs with building staff and maintenance teams. For example, mobile systems have increased efficiencies in processing and completing work orders. Rather than creating a ticket, tenants can now take a picture and submit it directly to the maintenance staff. For staff, this has shown increased efficiency and nimbleness for the job.
Additionally, property owners and managers are investing in technology, like Lobby CRE, to build better experiences for their tenants while also streamlining internal operations. With a property management software, owners and managers can focus on predictive analytics to identify opportunities and be better informed about commercial real estate assets and the surrounding neighborhoods.
Addressing the Labor Shortage
Since the onset of the pandemic, positions have been challenging to fill. Potential talent has had time to reassess their careers and have left the industry or retired to spend time with family. As a result, it has been tough to find the right candidates for these types of jobs.
The sudden nationwide departure of talent can be credited to recent market shifts, stagnant wages, lack of advancement, employee disengagement, poor work culture, and financial uncertainty, among many other factors. Regardless of employees’ reasons for leaving, research shows that the labor shortage currently affects about 70% of all commercial real estate firms.
The labor shortage, though challenging to navigate, has brought light to the need for innovative, forward-thinking strategies to attract and retain talent. While many industries have readily adopted technology, commercial real estate has been historically slow to embrace new tools, processes, and systems. However, post-pandemic and with evolving workforce expectations, technology is no longer a luxury – it’s a necessity for CRE firms who want to win the war on talent.
Our Final Thoughts
Because of demands for efficiency, labor shortages, and the need for tech all coming to fruition at once, we have really had to re-think the way we operate buildings on a daily basis – there is a new normal.
Overall, the BOMA conference was a success. Our team gained valuable information that we are still discussing with other CRE professionals in our network. Have questions about our take-aways or want to connect on any of the topics? Please contact us!