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Smart Building Real Estate: The 7 Big Benefits Corporate Real Estate Managers Realize With Smart Building Technology

Smart building real estate can reduce inefficient energy usage among buildings, which stands at 40 percent today, and enhance facilities management in unique ways.

Today’s corporate or commercial real estate (CRE) professionals face an endless list of duties and challenges. Tenants need to be happy. Stakeholders want to see consistent returns, and the demand for greater services at lower costs continues to increase. Meanwhile, a report by the General Services Administration (GSA) found significant driving forces behind cost savings through a study of smart building real estate, including seven key benefits.

1. Aggregate Operational Costs in Smart Building Real Estate Are Lower Than Industry Baselines

Aggregate operational costs include direct utility costs in managing a building. For example, water and electricity costs are in this group. Across the industry, aggregate costs amount to more than $400 billion annually in both CRE buildings and private homes. However, buildings are responsible for a majority of the energy use in the country, reports the U.S. Department of Energy. In the GSA report, the aggregate operational costs of CRE managers using smart building technology were up to 40-percent lower than non-optimized facilities.

2. Energy Performance Is Better Through Smart Building Technology

Energy performance plays a key role in how smart building technology impacts CRE, and is typically higher among companies leveraging the systems for energy management and faciliity optmization. The use of smart building technology also facilitiates predictive and prescriptive analytics that drive preventative maintenance. In other words, smart systems, using the Internet of Things (IoT), a major trend for 2017 and beyond, can extend equipment life-expectancy while enhancing its existing performance.

3. Occupant or Tenant Satisfaction Rates Increase

An improved tenant experience is an indirect benefit of smart building technology. Tenants are more likely to report issues, continue leasing space and work with facilities managers when newer technology is in place. Consequently, turnover rates decrease, and overall profitability increases.


4. It Reduces Impact on Global Climate Change, Saving CRE Providers Millions in Long-Term Costs

CRE companies’ buildings account for 16 percent of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions annually, reflecting the environmental consequences of today’s CRE buildings and providers. However, even minimal savings on energy can have a dramatic impact on the global climate.

For example, a 10-percent reduction in energy use by today’s CRE buildings could save more $40 billion per year. Meanwhile, predictions for increased energy demand due to climate change could exceed $300 billion by 2050, reports the University of Maryland. In other words, a 10-percent decrease today could amount to a 8-percent decrease in greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, possibly lowering the energy-demand forecast. This amounts to millions in savings over the next 50 years by implementing smart building technology today.

5. Waste Generation and Recycling Among Tenants Shows Resource Use and Sustainability Within the Building

The waste produced in a building is indicative of tenants’ use of resources, and less waste means sustainability initiatives, like recycling programs and waste monitoring, to minimize public environmental concerns. As a result, a reduction in waste generation may allude to happier, healthier tenants and experiences in your building.


6. Smart Building Technology Can Save Lives

It is not a stretch of the imagination to think about smart building technology saving lives. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), poor indoor air quality contributes to the deaths of 3 million people annually. Smart building technology can maximize air flow and improve the air quality within a building. As a result, the health of tenants, their customers and especially their employees may increase. Meanwhile, green office environments have been linked to increased cognitive function among employees and occupants, reports the Harvard School of Public Health.

7. Smart Buildings Level the Playing Field for CRE Managers in Companies, Ranging From Small to Enterprise

The final factor in how smart building technology improves CRE management is fundamental to today’s connected world and cloud-based systems. These systems power smart building technology and offer the same energy-saving benefits to small and mid-sized companies. As a result, competition is restored, resulting in better deals and offers for tenants.

Putting It All Together

The top, seven benefits of smart building technology will redefine standard facilities management operations in profound ways. By understanding these benefits today, your company can make the decisions necessary to ensure your company’s survival, and quite literally, the survival of the planet.