Tech Square, managed by Collaborative Real Estate, received the 2022 Excellence in Tenant Care Award from Commercial Real Estate Insight Journal. The award was created to recognize a building for excellence in tenant care, including health and wellbeing, communications, tenant engagement, and/or other activities that express care for building tenants.
At the time of receiving the award, Tech Square, a multi-block property located in Atlanta, Georgia served more than 100 startups, five startup accelerators, 25 corporate innovation centers, seven venture funds, 10 research labs, 10 Top 10 engineering programs, one Top 10 MBA program, and more than 2,100 Georgia Tech students.
Collaborative Real Estate, headquartered in Atlanta, managed numerous properties on college campuses throughout the United States, with properties in Georgia, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Illinois, South Carolina, Louisiana, and Florida, at the time of receiving the award.
Collaborative Real Estate’s tenant care programs at Tech Square focused on four aspects: researching their tenants, defining the community, training the team, and implementing programing to increase engagement and ignite connections.
First, Collaborative Real Estate conducted research via their Community Collaboration Assessment. Through qualitative and quantitative research, they discovered Tech Square housed a community with broad expertise and interests. Tenants were highly curious and wanted opportunities to not only connect with others in their respective fields and disciplines, but also to meet other tenants and learn about their work, successes, and challenges.
Next, Collaborative Real Estate developed a strong brand for the numerous tenants to rally around, the Tech Square ATL Social Club. This community was built to foster growth and innovation through the collaboration of individuals and companies within a curated environment. The Tech Square ATL Social Club provided a strong platform for event marketing and development, and it helped foster connections between tenants through their interaction in this exclusive digital space.
The Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Collaborative Real Estate, David Tyndall, explained the platform, “We found that many of our tenants were hosting events and putting up content. We saw that and wanted to create a menu, a bulletin board if you will, and make sure that each tenant was aware of what other tenants were doing in the building. And that was such a hit that it seemed to change the whole aura of the property from one of co-location to actual sharing.”
Training and Implementation
An important step in this process was training the property management team on the art and science of community collaboration. This was accomplished through the staff engaging in training that featured a curriculum focused on the psychology of community, placemaking, belonging, and the importance of data collection and analysis to improve results.
Once trained, the property management team implemented a range of services aimed at fostering collaboration between tenants. Each event was themed and enhanced by data collected from the tenants. The events were strategically organized and implemented to collect further data and insight into the property’s community members. This data was used in the creation of future events to meet the needs of tenants.
The initiative’s results were significant, with the company reaffirming its commitment to a human-centric philosophy of property management.
“The biggest impact has been on retention rates,” Tyndall said. “We see what’s going on with occupancy and vacancies overall, and the least leased property that we have is reporting 99-percent occupancy.”
Collaborative Real Estate’s tenant care initiative demonstrated the importance of intentional programming in fostering connections and building community. And the company’s efforts have resulted in a thriving community of tenants who increasingly collaborate and innovate.
Joulea, a software platform startup in Centergy One, one of the buildings in Tech Square, utilized drones for autonomous building inspections, but had run into issues with permitting within the City of Atlanta. Through its tenant collaboration programs, Collaborative Real Estate introduced the founder of Joulea to the Chief Executive Officer of TCPoly, another building tenant who utilized drones for inspection of their building efficiency technologies. TCPoly was able to assist Joulea in getting drone permits within the City of Atlanta, and the drones permitted through this collaboration have been featured in a number of tenant events at Tech Square.
The collaboration between tenants and Collaborative Real Estate continued to grow, with more local community members being brought in to discuss building efficiency. Joulea, TCPoly, Entek (an HVAC, building automation, and energy services company), and Collaborative Real Estate met to discuss increasing building efficiencies by identifying and solving inefficiencies through a combination of high-tech problem solving, automation, HVAC innovation, and cutting-edge manufacturing.
For its innovative tenant engagement platforms, data-driven tenant programs, impressive staff education initiatives, qualitative and quantitative research development, and incredible partnership building between tenants, Tech Square, managed by Collaborative Real Estate, received the 2022 Excellence in Tenant Care Award from CRE Insight Journal.