The pandemic turned digital connectivity into a top priority for office tenants almost overnight. As a matter of fact, it was this connectivity that allowed thousands of companies to continue operating without a hitch after transitioning most of their employees to remote work.
Now that the hybrid workplace model is here to stay, digital capability and smart technology are expected to become two of the most critical factors that organizations will consider when searching for office space.
To help tenants identify the office properties offering the best connectivity and tech, N.Y.-based WiredScore has created two certifications. These certifications can not only help landlords market their buildings but can also help tenants choose their new office location with confidence, knowing that the building has the infrastructure to support the new way of work.
The WiredScore Certification
The company’s first certification system, also named WiredScore, was created to assess a building’s digital infrastructure. The certification has four levels – Platinum, Gold, Silver, and Certified, with Silver being the most commonly awarded rating. Buildings are rated on their capability to meet potential tenants’ technological demands.
The certification process takes into consideration five key aspects of a property’s digital capabilities. It looks at the network’s resilience against environmental factors and safety breaches; its capability to easily adopt new technologies; the mobile coverage throughout the property; the number of high-speed fiber providers tenants can choose from; and the connectivity experience of the building occupants.
WiredScore was first introduced in 2013 in collaboration with the City of New York and then-mayor Mike Bloomberg. Since its launch, the program has certified 700 million square feet of space, where 7 million people live and work.
The SmartScore Certification
WiredScore introduced its SmartScore Certification in 2021. Its aim is to standardize the definition of “smart” as it relates to office properties. SmartScore also offers Platinum, Gold, Silver, and Certified levels of certification. As a part of its certification process, the organization can help property owners implement a future-proof smart building infrastructure, which will attract not only tenants but also investors and lenders.
SmartScore looks at a building’s technology and procedures, as well as the end-user experience. The technological foundations scorecard assesses the available digital connectivity services, the building systems’ digital capabilities, the wired and wireless building infrastructure, the property’s cybersecurity compliance, smart data utilization, and the owner’s smart tech vision for the future.
The user experience is gauged by looking at individual productivity and collaboration, the health and wellbeing of occupants, their access to information, and the building’s sustainability, security, maintenance, and operations.
The certification was developed with the help of the WiredScore Smart Council, which includes major landlords, space users, and industry advisors, as well as a number of smart technology experts.
Why Lease in a Smart Building?
Not surprisingly, buildings that have earned a smart certification are expected to command higher rental rates. The benefits of leasing space in a smart building, however, can certainly justify the additional cost:
The connectivity of smart buildings can facilitate better productivity and collaboration, whether between employees in the office or a team across the globe.
Smart buildings harness the power of data to create a healthier environment for their occupants.
Smart tech facilitates more efficient operations and helps reduce energy use and waste in commercial buildings.
Organizations that show commitment to smart technology and innovation oftentimes attract better talent.
Leasing space in a smart building speaks volumes to a company’s culture and can boost its public image.
While WiredScore’s certifications are still somewhat of a novelty in the commercial real estate industry, the number of landlords looking to certify their portfolios is rapidly growing. If you are interested in locating your headquarters in a smart property, you should contact one of our experienced tenant reps, who are already familiar with the existing inventory of certified buildings and are always on the lookout for new buildings getting the seal of approval.
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