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Sep.September 07, 2022 09:30 AM

Equiem One Helps Landlords Turn Office Buildings from Obligations to Destinations

Pictured: Paul Stanton, Head of Strategy, David Adams, Chief Product Officer, Gabrielle McMillan, CEO

Employees have traditionally seen the commute into an office as an obligation — something they had to do to perform their job. But since the pandemic, there has been a huge shift in the way employers and employees view the “why” and “when” of the office experience.

What can companies and landlords do to better align with these changes in employee attitudes?

In an exclusive interview, the Real Deal spoke with the team at tenant experience technology leader Equiem — Gabrielle McMillan, CEO; Paul Stanton, Head of Strategy; and David Adams, Chief Product Officer — to discuss the changes in the workplace landscape and how their new platform, Equiem One, helps landlords meet the needs of modern tenants.

Over a Decade Focusing On Tenant Experience

When McMillan Co-Founded Equiem over 11 years ago, they started with three objectives:

  • To create a digital platform connecting all employees in a building — even across disparate companies — and collect data to inform capital investment
  • To connect on-site retailers (amenities and services) to all tenants
  • To establish hotel-like environments for the office, built around hospitality and service

Over the course of the last decade, the commercial real estate community has adopted many of these tenant-focused principles. And after the pandemic accelerated the work-from-home shift, landlords must now go even further to cater to the needs of tenants – many reluctant to come back to the office. 

“Office buildings are competing with the home office, the local cafe, co-working spaces, and other environments,” McMillan observed. “So they need to create more compelling reasons for people to come into the office.”

Stanton added, “We’re seeing a shift in the entire office culture — from the idea of the office as an obligation to the idea of the office as a destination.” 

Today’s Office Must Be Flexible and Elastic

Forward-thinking companies realize that employees, especially knowledge workers, prefer flexibility and choice of where, when, and how they work. So it has become paramount to create environments that provide social engagement opportunities and high-end amenities (e.g., fitness centers, quality food options, inviting workspaces, etc.) that are an upgrade from the employees’ home office experience. And they expect all this to be delivered through a modern technology experience. 

Adams remarked, “The 21st-century workspace will need to be flexible and elastic, with employee numbers swelling and contracting depending on the day. To provide that kind of flexibility and level of service requires a high-tech digital layer that’s not easy to implement.”

Equiem One: A Platform Designed for the Modern Office

Office real estate has changed so much in the past few years, and landlords are accelerating new technology adoption to keep up with tenant experience expectations. 

But now that’s created a new problem, in that property managers are forced to manage multiple disparate systems with up to a dozen tabs open at any given time.

“We spent years rolling out new buildings with landlords, and they kept saying they would love to have one integrated solution to bring all the disparate platforms together,” mentioned McMillan. “So we created Equiem One to combine tenant experience,  building operations, and data & insights into one integrated hub. One login, one interface, one single solution.”

The platform gives landlords the capability to operate the building’s services from one centralized location, integrating functions such as:

  • Access Control
  • Flex Space Management
  • Data and Analytics
  • Energy management
  • Amenity and Space Bookings
  • Content Management
  • Technical Support
  • Event Management
  • Order Management

In addition to the benefits for landlords and property managers, Equiem One also features an easy-to-use app so tenants can utilize all aspects of their workspace from one convenient touchpoint. Adams stated, “Creating a great experience for both the property manager and the tenant was extremely important to us.”

The Equiem Difference

As a trailblazer in the tenant experience category, the company knew Equiem One would have an advantage over upstart competitors in the space. McMillan noted, “We created the tenant experience category, so we had over a decade of data and feedback directly from landlords and tenants to inform our vision for Equiem One.”  

Stanton added, “The DNA of the company is built around hospitality, service, and truly understanding the tenant’s needs. While certain services are now table stakes, what separates us from others in the space is the quality of those services and our 11 years of data and experience that no one else has.”

On top of combining operations and tenant experience into one single, streamlined hub, Equiem One also provides landlords with a treasure trove of data to aid in both attracting new tenants and retaining existing ones.  

Stanton said, “With our platform and service offerings, we can work with landlords to engage tenants and prospects well before a new building is even completed. And by providing leasing teams with tenant analytics — such as employee attendance numbers, amenity usage, and employee preferences — they can use those insights to approach renewal conversations more strategically.”

A Solution for All Categories

It’s not just Class A buildings that can use Equiem One. McMillan explained, “One myth is that this tenant experience is only for premium buildings, but we have assets of all types on the platform. Once these landlords get a digital layer in place, they can communicate, engage, streamline workflows, create operational efficiencies, and start to actually leverage the scale of their portfolio. We’re excited to bring this platform to all categories.”

Ready to learn more? Click here to book a demo now.

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