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Impact of COVID-19 Survey Results

COVID-19 has created a major disturbance in our everyday lives, especially in the way we work. To better understand the challenges that building managers are facing during these unprecedented times, we sent out a survey to gather some feedback from industry leaders. Below is a summary of the answers we received. 

Q1. How is your team currently managing your building(s)?

8% of respondents are managing their buildings entirely onsite and only 17% are able to manage their buildings entirely remotely. 50% say they have a mix of onsite and remote management in place. This leaves around 25% of respondents without a clear plan on how to manage their buildings during these uncertain times. 

Q2. Are you able to access all of the necessary building systems remotely? 

This one was split right down the middle with 50% having access and 50% not having access to all of the necessary building systems remotely. 

Q3. Please list the building subsystems that you are unable to access remotely?

Here are some of the top systems our respondents are unable to access remotely: BMS (Building Management Systems), Occupant security system and physical servers.  

Q4. What software are you currently using to manage your building(s) remotely, if any?

From the answers we received, most facility managers are using a Remote BMS System or a Work Order and Operations Management System, with some using a mix of both. This is indicative of how essential these tools are to the CRE industry. In addition, respondents also utilize labour resource management & inventory and procurement. 

Q5. What measures are you taking to combat the spread of COVID-19 in your buildings?

The vast majority of respondents are utilizing visitor management systems to limit the number of visitors who enter their building as well as increasing cleaning schedules. Alarmingly, close to 18% have no measures in place right now. 

Q6. What changes have you made to the way your building operates?

90% of respondents have reduced the number of staff working per building as well as changing the building’s operation mode (day/night mode) by reducing the temperature and brightness inside the building. 

Q7. How did your day-to-day job change?

Most respondents reported that they are spending more time communicating with their team. A large amount of time is also being spent researching building operation changes to address COVID-19. Less than 10% reported that they have not experienced any major changes and believe that they will be able to work from home after the pandemic passes. 

Q8. What would help you do your job more effectively during this time?

50% of respondents are looking for ways to improve their communication methods with tenants, whilst 30% want to improve how they are able to remotely access their building systems. It's interesting to see close to 10% are researching better ways to disinfect surfaces like using UV light etc. 

Q9. What new data or information would help you optimize the safety or operation of your building during the COVID-19 quarantine?

Here are some of the top responses: Occupancy controls & remote BMS controls, Infrared cameras at turnstiles to monitor occupant and visitor temperature, and lastly an assessment of the building and systems that are operational within it relative to concerns about COVID-19

We want to thank everyone who took the time to complete this survey, your answers provide valuable insights into what is happening in Commercial Real Estate right now, and we are happy to be able to share those insights with you. 

One thing that is clear, is that there will be a lot of changes happening to the way we live and work within buildings. The need for remote access to building systems will keep rising and CRE operators and owners will need to invest in technology that will enable them to effectively manage their properties. Touchless access to buildings, office spaces and elevators will become essential and implementing and managing strict regular cleaning schedules is non-negotiable. 

As an organization that serves both healthcare, commercial real estate, and corporate real estate organizations we empathize deeply with what our customers are going through at this moment. We’re a technology organization, but for us people have always come first. If you need advice on where to start or how you can make the changes your organization needs to be prepared for the future, get in touch. Community is important now more than ever.
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