The definition of tenant sentiment is different than it was ten or even five years ago. Today, it ties directly to the complete tenant experience, rather than just the space and services provided directly by a property management team.
An office is no longer a place where people ‘just work.’ With hybrid and fully remote work models dominating the post-pandemic world, the entire purpose of the office is being reconsidered. And while workers value the comfort and convenience of working from home, it’s clear there’s no substitute for in-person collaboration and camaraderie. So property teams need a clear idea of what their tenants want in order to get them back.
Offices are seen by tenants as a magnet to attract and retain top talent. Companies want their space to be part of the company culture and to provide an ideal experience for their employees each day. A tenant’s decision to renew or sign a new lease is now based even more heavily on their employees’ work experience.
To compete in this new reality, CRE organizations need to deliver a tenant experience that looks very different to what it did even two years ago, let alone 30. Which means they need new ways to measure tenant sentiment. Traditional efforts to collect tenant sentiment data—like lengthy, monotonous satisfaction surveys—don’t cut it anymore. These outdated approaches were once good at assessing a space and service, but they don’t focus on the overall tenant experience.
Problems With Traditional Ways of Gauging Tenant Sentiment
There are a few specific reasons why property managers need to re-evaluate how they collect tenant sentiment data:
- Inaccurate targeting. Traditional surveys are usually sent to one contact from a tenant’s company. This is too narrow a focus to get a full picture of the tenant experience.
- Infrequent feedback. A once-a-year survey won’t gather enough feedback. And who knows if the timing is good for your tenant?
- Irrelevant questions. Customer feedback should center on the customer (tenant) experience rather than items on a building engineer’s checklist. Questions like “Please rate the performance of the elevators” miss the point.
- Intrusive process. Let’s be honest. Everyone involved in an annual satisfaction survey dreads the process. It takes a lot of time to deploy, not to mention haranguing tenants to get a response.
The good news? CRE tech has advanced so quickly that there are great options to make tenant sentiment measurement easier than before. These programs are:
- Mobile, so they meet tenants where they’re at.
- Simple for both property managers to deploy and tenants to complete.
- Applicable to the experience, not just the office space or building.
- Conducted consistently and often.
- Broad, so you can see the whole picture from your tenants, not just one person.
Is your tenant feedback program one that’s 30 years old? If so, it won’t give you the insight you need to keep up with today’s tenant expectations. It’s time to improve tenant communication and use their feedback to enhance the tenant experience.
Consider a tenant experience app with the functionality and flexibility to get you consistent, actionable, real-time tenant sentiment data. Learn more about Building Engines tenant experience module.