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Space Utilization, Employee Experience, Corporate Real Estate Strategy, Match supply and demand - 6 min read

4 Stats that back up what you know but can’t prove as a Corporate Real Estate Manager

Youri Wildeman October 10, 2018

Corporate real estate managers are dealing with a lack of insight on how their office buildings are actually being used. Despite this, there are a few things they know for sure: the static data from manual occupancy audits isn’t actionable, there’s less space per employee, there always seems to be underutilized work space, and energy usage isn’t efficient. Of course, you also know this leads to wasting large sums of money.

But without any real oversight or concrete data on how people move and interact with the building, managers can’t effect any real change. Here, we’re revealing 4 statistics from the corporate real estate market that back up what you know, but couldn’t prove.


1. 700-million square feet in construction, but space per employee is decreasing by up to 5%

You already know that even though there is physically more space, there seems to be less and less space per employee. A recent Cushman & Wakefield Global Office Forecast found that to be true across the industry.

They found that while there are more than 700-million square feet of new construction planned in the span of just three years, office densities and occupancy costs around the world are increasing. In North America, they’ve lost 5% of space per employee and in Europe, they’ve lost about half that, at 2.3% per employee (Cushman & Wakefield).

2. 4/10 office workers waste an hour a week looking for desk space

You have a hunch that new work environments like flex and co-working spaces are affecting how employees find desk space. But while you see empty desks, you’re not quite sure when or why this is happening. It might surprise you to learn that a 2015 CBRE Workplace Strategy Survey found that 4/10 office workers spend an hour a week just searching for an available workspace.

3. 40% of available office space is unoccupied on any given day

They also found that despite employees wasting time looking for somewhere to work, a whopping 40-percent of available offices are unoccupied on any given day (CBRE Workplace Strategy Survey) – highlighting the significant amount of time and space lost to these new practices, even during peak occupancy hours.

4. Office buildings waste 30% of energy costs

Research reveals that office buildings waste approximately 30% of their total energy costs on inefficient climate and lighting systems that are poorly adjusted to the actual usage and occupancy of the building. Without understanding where people are working, or their work patterns, it’s difficult – if not impossible – to actually set up a climate system that works according to occupancy and doesn’t waste energy.

What these stats reveal: You can’t affect change without data

Real estate managers have long-know their buildings need to be optimized. But without data, they are only working on hunches and hearsay. What they need is concrete and continuous information on how people interact with the building itself to make decisions that affect real change and drive down costs.

Today, the Internet of Things and Occupancy Optimization are providing insight that was previously unattainable. By leveraging real-time data on where people are in the building when, corporate real estate managers now have actionable insight on how to optimize their building.

E-book: Space Optimization and IoT

In our latest e-book, we reveal what’s holding Corporate Real Estate Managers back from entering the IoT market despite promise for real change. We also highlight how this tech is being leveraged by Corporate Real Estate leaders today, as well as explore what you can expect as the IoT market matures in the years to come.


Corporate Real Estate Data Playbook

Learn how to leverage the IoT to get actual insights in how your portfolio is being used.

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Youri Wildeman

Business Development, Sales, Marketing & Partnerships lead with strong experience in the Global B2B SaaS Software Industry.