What would most people identify as the greatest single enabling capability that technology has unlocked in recent decades? Chances are that the vast majority of respondents to that question will single out connectivity as the answer. Even a casual look at the relationship of humans with technology reveals this influence in every aspect of our lives. Whether it is the internet, our smartphones and other digital devices, or the impressive list of services that we can now access using them, the great redefining element is connectivity. 

The dramatic new capabilities are perhaps even more empowering within a commercial and industrial context. From IoT to Industries 4.0 or any number of examples of process optimisation, the ability to unify automation under the command and control of a centralised platform redefines possibilities. The commercial real estate experience is no exception to this rule. If anything, enterprise wide platforms for buildings maybe one of the most significant applications of ubiquitous connectivity.  

 

Connectivity is empowering the entire spectrum of stakeholders in commercial real estate 

Smart buildings equate an empowered experience, for occupants, managers and workforces alike. From optimal energy consumption and proactive maintenance, to lower vacancy rates and more engaged employees, the possibilities are endless. In legacy models of operations, FM was looked at as a passive cost center, but technology has now flipped that paradigm on its head. For instance, the value addition due to smart offices alone creates such varied positives, that the entire value chain of relationships and business processes is redefined. 

Typical workdays are 7 to 10 hours long and every aspect of the experience – such as air quality, temperature and lighting – affects the wellbeing and performance of occupants. Management of these environments is equally critical and connectivity, AI and IoT leveraging solutions empower the FM industry as never before. The impact on residential real estate, malls, airports and other public facilities is no less significant, with similar enhancements for the collective benefit of all stakeholders.  

 

Enterprise-wide, data-driven FM platforms – The game changing enhancement 

Proptech investment reached nearly $4 Billion, in 2018. Technology is having an unprecedented impact on real estate and facilities management. The emergence of enterprise-wide data-driven platforms for managing FM operations will add perhaps the most crucial element to this new approach – centralized control. Real-time data-led decision making, by recruiting the power of AI, IoT and Machine Learning, is being widely acknowledged as a powerful multiplier of the impact of technology. 

Commercial real estate owners can now scale efficiencies, through predictive operations that deliver optimal efficiencies and enhanced occupant experiences. An enterprise-wide software platform for facilities operations and maintenance gives CRE owners the competitive edge in a highly saturated market.

 

Connectivity is changing how we use our built assets

The underlying technology, that makes devices and technologies as varied as lights, sensors, HVAC units, elevators and security systems ‘Smart’, is connectivity. IoT collated data and AI enabled analysis, allow every element of a commercial real estate asset to operate at maximum potential. Connectivity, IoT and AI, combined in the guise of an enterprise-wide platform, enable an operational model that generates superior outcomes, scales more rapidly and is more responsive to performance demands. 

The shift in approach, that is redefining commercial real estate, is one that is moving from a focus on the property as a commodity, to conceiving its primary role as providing enhanced experiences. People centric perspectives are the most logical to take about a technology, especially within the realm of real estate. As infrastructure that has been created to host human activities, having a focus on how the asset facilitates such outcomes is the best measure of its capabilities. What connectivity adds, to the dozens of existing technologies we take for granted in our buildings, is an overall context and a synergy that aligns their strengths for a common cause: the pursuit of excellence and seamless perfection in experience.