Campus Re-imagined, Client Experience | Advisory Services

by | 27 January 2023

What are we seeing today?

Hybrid work is driving real estate organizations to examine how and where their offices and employment centers should be allocated. At our recent Innovation Summit, most participants stated they will see significant space repositioning in the next three years. At Colliers, Portfolio Strategy Consulting has helped all types of organizations eliminate excess capacity and realize considerable savings.

Our solution: A Mosaic team approach

We are happy to announce the launch of a new product, Campus Re-imagined. Designed to help organizations determine how to move forward with these large campuses, we leverage a holistic “metro planning” strategy approach that embraces a “mosaic” array of services philosophy. Put simply, we engage a multi-disciplinary advisory services team, including leadership from portfolio, workplace, and flexible workplace strategy consulting services.

Driving the data: A holistic business analysis

The purpose of Campus Re-imagined is to align business and work patterns (worker profiles and work process) with optimal location strategies (workplace requirements and location criteria) to enable peak business performance while reducing costs.

Providing a streamlined process for rapid recommendations

It is a four-phase process, beginning with Discovery and Insight. During this first phase, we gather market data, develop decision criteria for alternatives, learn the future business requirements, develop a portfolio summary, conduct a business needs assessment, and perform an employee commute analysis. We collaborate with local experts in each market to obtain relevant real estate market data. We interview key business leaders to deeply understand the business needs, goals, and objectives. We illustrate current and potential future employee commute times to the current site(s) and designate areas which could work as potential relocation options.

In Phase 2, Metro and Portfolio Analytics, we dive deeper into the details of the portfolio and develop the business demand and match that to real estate supply. We factor in not only real estate market performance, but also the cost and abundance of labor pools to illustrate the ease of hiring required to run the business. We also analyze occupancy and utilization patterns and assess workplace alignment to business needs to quantify space requirements and narrow down potential options. Again, a multi-disciplinary mosaic approach is key to this work as regular cross-disciplinary collaboration and knowledge sharing prepares us to enter Phase 3.

“We leverage a four-phase process working in close collaboration with the company business and CRE leadership teams to develop and deliver recommendations resulting from the study.”

Scenario driven alternative

In Phase 3, Scenario Alternatives, we develop scenario alternatives based on the logical conclusions previous phases have led us to. While scenarios are described as real estate tactics, they are designed to address the business problems unearthed during the Discovery phase. We present various options based on business goals and lay out the financial impact of each scenario. We break down the scenarios and critical dates into a timeline to illustrate each scenario implementation’s estimated length of time. This sets the stage for providing assessments of timing feasibility, phasing, pros and cons, and financial implications.

Scorecard comparison

In Phase 4, Refinement, the final step of the process is to provide our recommendations for long and short-term options which include a financial and cost-benefit analysis. These elements lead to a refined business case. Each scenario receives a final score based on the criteria we developed in Phase 1, such as estimated capital expense required and the likeliness of business disruption. The scores show each scenario objectively and eliminate emotional constraints from decision making. While the ultimate decision is the clients’, we demonstrate our recommendations vis a vis the impact to key performance indicators across the mosaic of disciplines that have been brought to examine the problem.

Through engaging in this process, we match current and future business demand with the optimum real estate supply. We optimize the location for maximum talent attraction and retention while providing the ideal space employees require to do their best work. Other benefits include improved financial performance, maximized capital outlay efficiency, and marked improvements and gains to sustainability metrics and goals. This multi-disciplinary effort takes under-utilized assets and transforms them into their highest and best use, providing benefits to the firm, employees, and the surrounding communities.