Optimizing space utilization is essential for success. Every square foot of unutilized space drains the potential profitability of a building. This article provides everything you need to start making the most of your space using the concept of space management.
Understanding space management
Space management is an art form that requires creativity, collaboration, and innovation. It’s about finding the sweet spot between tenants’ needs and a property’s operational efficiency. By understanding the principles of space management and leveraging the latest technologies, property managers can create functional and inspiring spaces.
What is space management in commercial real estate?
The concept of space management focuses on optimizing the use of space within a commercial property. It involves analyzing factors such as traffic patterns, workflow, and tenant needs to create functional and efficient spaces. To make data-driven decisions, space management relies on sensors to gather data on space utilization and software solutions to analyze that data.
A well-planned space management strategy can lead to reduced rental costs, improved working conditions, and increased employee productivity. By implementing an effective space management plan, organizations can benefit from a wide range of advantages and improve their operations in the long run.
Why does it matter?
Managing space effectively maximizes profitability and property value while simultaneously improving the tenant experience. Well-designed, maintained, and equipped spaces can increase property values and differentiate properties from competitors. By optimizing the use of space, property owners can increase rental income and reduce operating costs, attract high-quality tenants, and increase lease renewals.
What are the principles?
To fully make use of the concept of space management, you first need to understand a few fundamental principles that include:
- Space optimization: The maximization of space use through multi-use areas, underutilized areas, and clever storage solutions.
- Maintenance: Regularly cleaning, repairing, and upgrading the building ensures functional, attractive, and safe spaces.
- Flexibility: Designing adaptable spaces can help meet evolving tenant needs and market changes.
- Technology: Incorporating technological advancements can improve efficiency, safety, and functionality.
- Sustainability: Implementing eco-friendly practices such as energy-efficient lighting, renewable energy sources, and recycling programs makes CRE properties more attractive and efficient.
The process of managing your facility’s space
Managing your facility’s space involves three key steps: assessing and analyzing your current space usage, optimizing your space utilization, and implementing a space management plan.
Assessing and analyzing
Before optimizing your facility’s space, you need to create a comprehensive understanding of your facility’s space utilization. This involves gathering information about your building, its occupants, and their needs, as well as evaluating the current use of space. Then, you can start looking for opportunities to improve your facility’s space utilization.
Optimize space usage and floor planning in CRE buildings
Optimizing space usage in CRE (commercial real estate) buildings starts with an accurate floor plan of the current space. Once you understand the current utilization of space, you can identify underutilized areas and optimization opportunities. For example, if there are areas that are only used occasionally, they could be converted into multi-use spaces to maximize their potential.
Tips for implementing a space management plan
Here are some suggestions for implementing a successful space management plan:
- Conduct an assessment: Assess the current space usage and identify areas that need improvement.
- Prioritize: Determine which areas need to be addressed first and prioritize them based on their impact on productivity, efficiency, and cost savings.
- Create a plan: Develop a detailed plan outlining specific goals, strategies, and tactics for optimizing space usage.
- Involve employees: Involve employees in the planning process to gain their insights and support.
- Implement the plan: Implement the plan in a phased approach, with clear timelines and metrics for success.
- Monitor and adjust: Continuously monitor the plan’s effectiveness and adjust as needed to ensure it meets the organization’s evolving needs.
Strategies for effective space management
Effective space management leverages a few key space management strategies to assist in optimizing the value of CRE space. Some plans for effective space management include flexible workspace options like hot-desking, co-working areas, and meeting rooms. Designing multi-functional spaces that serve multiple purposes can also greatly benefit building occupants.
Best practices and examples
One example of effective space management is the WeWork co-working spaces. They are flexible and adaptable to meet the needs of tenants. They incorporate communal kitchens and lounges to create a sense of community. WeWork also uses technology to monitor space usage and adjust floor plans.
Another example is The Edge in Amsterdam which takes advantage of various technologies to optimize space utilization and enhance the occupant experience. The building incorporates features such as a mobile app that allows employees to control lighting and temperature in their workspace. They also use sensors that monitor space usage and occupancy.
From the success of these two examples, we can find a few commonalities you can incorporate as best practices, including:
- Monitor space usage: Using technology to monitor how tenants use the spaces gives valuable data you can use to update spaces accordingly.
- Prioritize the tenant: Understand the usage patterns of your tenants and their guests and prioritize their experience.
- Create adaptable spaces: Incorporate flexible spaces into your floor plan for underutilized spaces.
Space management software solutions provide a centralized platform for managing various aspects of space management. This allows property managers to make data-driven decisions regarding space usage and allocation based on up-to-date data. Some software solutions also offer visualization tools like floor plans and 3D modeling.
You can expand the capabilities of your space management software solutions by integrating them into ProptechOS. Integrating your CRE software into ProptechOS expands the capabilities of all your software solutions. It creates a unified solution giving you a more holistic look at your building and its use. ProptechOS also offers simple integrations with all of its partners.
Facility managers can use tools to optimize space management including:
- Space planning software enables managers to visualize the space, allocate resources, and identify areas for improvement.
- Integrated Workplace Management System (IWMS) streamlines function like space and asset management, maintenance, and lease management.
- Computer-Aided Facility Management (CAFM) provides a digital platform for managing facility-related data.
- Building Information Modeling (BIM), software creates a digital representation of a building’s physical and functional characteristics.
By utilizing these tools, property managers can improve their space management capabilities and create a more efficient and functional building for tenants.
Integrating these tools into a single platform allows deeper insights into potential space optimization improvements. Try ProptechOS for free to see how integrating your building software solutions into a single dashboard can help your CRE properties flourish.