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Survey probes smart buildings technology budgets, priorities

Sept. 22, 2021
Unpacking key findings from the Verdantix 'Global Corporate Survey 2021: Smart Building Technology Budgets, Priorities & Preferences' report.

Independent research firm Verdantix has released its annual global survey of 285 senior corporate real estate and facilities management executives in a position to influence corporate real estate and facilities management decisions at their respective firms.

Verdantix reports that the survey's respondents – whose titles include Heads of Real Estate, Directors of Facilities Management, Vice Presidents of Real Estate and Senior Managers of Facilities Management – reveal that firms are planning new technology investments across such areas as employee workplace experience, asset management and cloud-based security solutions.

Verdantix industry analyst Joy Trinquet observes:

“Today, real estate and facilities executives are managing a rapidly changing agenda, from ensuring buildings are well-maintained to developing new workplace strategies for the hybrid working era. Our smart building technology global survey provides a unique insight into the most important objectives of 285 senior corporate real estate and facilities management executives for the next three years.”

Key findings of the Verdantix ‘Global Corporate Survey 2021: Smart Building Technology Budgets, Priorities & Preferences’ report, as stated by the analyst firm, include the following:

  • For the first time in three years, executives are making cost reduction their number one priority in real estate management (30% of respondents), followed by enhancing staff health and wellbeing (25%), decarbonizing buildings (22%), improving building resiliency (22%), and attracting and retaining talent (9%).
  • High priority initiatives include increasing the amount of agile working (58% or respondents), getting more value out of facilities contractors (48%), increasing use of mobile applications (47%), enhancing cyber security risk management (47%), and revising business continuity plans (47%).
  • ESG demands are triggering new investments in reporting and green building certifications, with 47% of respondents making new investments in reporting building-related ESG data to investors and stakeholders.
  • Reflecting the growing adoption of hybrid working strategies, 27% of respondents reported that they are accelerating real estate portfolio downsizing activities, and a further 28% reported that they are evaluating space reduction opportunities as a result of COVID-19.

“The hybrid working trend is drastically changing the way business and employees use their buildings,” contends Trinquet. “Our survey data shows 2022 will see a significant growth in investments on technology for employee experience, space chargebacks and access control and security management. At the same time, cost-cutting pressures will force 67% of firms to keep budgets flat for key platforms such as CAFM and CMMS.”

Computer-aided facility management [CAFM] software supports both automated facility and real estate management, integrating with multiple platforms to help facilities managers plan and track how facilities are used. Computerized maintenance management system [CMMS] software helps building stakeholders manage assets, schedule maintenance and track work orders.

Learn more about the Verdantix ‘Global Corporate Survey 2021'

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