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As coworking is on the rise and companies are growing increasingly interested in flexible lease options, the nature of the traditional office market is changing. Companies today need to remain agile to stay ahead, and it’s imperative to weigh all the options available to corporate occupiers before locking in a space solution.
Traditionally, evaluating real estate options involved bidding and looking at various long-term possibilities, as well as a few subleases. It’s a time-consuming process that often just slows companies down.
But what if there were an innovative tool that uses data and analytics to help companies make better office space decisions quickly, and with just a few clicks? To help streamline the process, CBRE recently introduced CALC, CBRE Agile Lease Calculator, a proprietary model that allows companies to input basic details about their current business and receive a cost summary comparing a standard lease to flexible space.
“CALC exists for one simple reason—we wanted to help tenants make the right choice more often. Agility, the ability to respond in a cost-effective way to changes in the demand for space, is about keeping up while saving money. In other words, agility is quantifiable.” says Marshall O’Moore, Director, Integrated Transaction Solutions, CBRE. “To quantify that benefit on their own, tenants would have to run a dizzying number of scenarios. CALC runs thousands of scenarios in less than a second and a half. Meaning that your space solution, whether traditional or agile, is undergoing the ultimate stress test, before you’ve made a single commitment.”
By entering in standard company info—current market, headcount and anticipated lease term—the tool will be able to determine the cost of a standard lease and flexible space per square foot, but also per seat per month (a common pricing strategy for flexible spaces), per meeting room seat per month and any one-time costs.
According to CBRE’s 2018 Americas Occupier Survey, 85 percent of companies with less than 50 employees anticipate implementing coworking as a space solution in the next three years. Seventy percent of companies with more than 50 employees plan to use it as well. For many businesses, it’s a practical, cost-saving space solution that not only provides flexibility and agility, but also the ability to try out different types of spaces in new markets.
The flexible space market has something for companies large and small. Flexibility often comes up in the conversation for specific business units or when a company is diversifying its office portfolio mix. This might be for a new business line or when entering a new market and needing to test how their brand resonates locally and their ability to attract talent. High-growth tech companies are also looking to this model.
Once a company enters their information and CALC determines their options, users can customize variables, like headcount projection and degree of certainty; compare different scenarios to understand the real estate cost over time; and ultimately create and save their customized report.
CALC’s modeling scenarios are a jumping off point for real estate discussions. The next step for occupiers is to work with their broker to find compatible real estate options, which may include flexible solutions.
With a seemingly endless array of new options available to corporate occupiers today, from on-demand meeting and event spaces to turnkey serviced offices, CALC can help companies narrow the field to what works best for their current and future situations.