Editor: Investing in technology will be critical to achieving green building standards and boosting rent returns in CRE (‘Green London office buildings could achieve 12.3% rental premium’). And with sustainability rapidly rising up tenants’ agenda, these objectives should go hand in hand.

Green keyboard concept

Source: Shutterstock / ESB Professional

Using tech to improve the energy efficiency of their spaces will help landlords to save money and the environment. Installing motion sensors will facilitate the recording of building occupancy data that can inform adjustments to environmental factors such as heating and air conditioning.

Investing in smart facilities management systems enables operators to automate the process of energy provision according to need. By analysing occupancy data in real time, these systems can create a space that is optimised for occupiers’ comfort.

Lighting can be managed in a similar way, as AI-equipped systems become capable of moderating lighting according to patterns of user preference as well as environmental stimuli.

Optimising light provision is important for workers’ wellbeing as well as the environment. In a recent survey by Staples Advantage, a third of employees agreed that better lighting would make them happier at work, so investing in this technology will be all the more important for maintaining tenants’ satisfaction.

With environmental impact and workers’ wellbeing both integral to businesses’ ESG ambitions, prospective tenants will pay a premium to have a rapid, reliable digital infrastructure in their workspace. And as employees look to reduce their reliance on commuting for environmental and wellbeing-based reasons, a robust internet connection capable of bridging the distance between disparate colleagues will be essential.

While much of this new technology requires considerable initial investment, this will be offset by the long-term benefits of being able to offer prospective tenants a tech-enabled space. The market has moved towards more formalised means of measuring value in (and extracting value from) tech-ready offices and landlords who invest early will make the most of these benefits.

Adam Case, technical director, technologywithin