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10 Largest Office Buildings in the World

By Shahar Alster
Chief Executive Officer & Co-Founder
SpaceIQ

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It would be unfair to categorize this list by tallest building because there are cities that prefer to build out than up. Based on their square footage, here are the most impressive and massive office spaces from around the globe.

  1. The Pentagon: As a government building, the Pentagon doesn’t immediately come to mind as office space. But with its 620,000 square meters, the building is home to the United States Department of Defense, serving as the frontline for innovation in strategy and technology.
  2. Place du Portage: Another government facility, but this one’s in Gatineau, Quebec, Canada. The large complex contains 70 floors, stretched out over five towers holding roughly 10,000 office workers. The Ottawa River-facing complex includes pedestrian bridges that form its own type of “underground city.”
  3. Desjardins Complex: With Canadian complexes claiming the two of the top spots on this list, it’s clear they like to build wide, not tall in this North American country. With a greater number of overall floors than Place du Portage, the Desjardins Complex in Montreal, Quebec, is a mixed-use space for offices, a shopping mall, and a hotel, which is probably convenient for business travelers.
  4. Willis Tower: The name of this 110-story building might not be familiar, as it was built (and is still referred to) as the Sears Tower. Completed in 1973, it remained the tallest building in the world for nearly 25 years and the tallest in the Western Hemisphere until One World Trade Center was completed in 2014.
  5. CCTV Headquarters: Don’t worry, this Beijing building is not 389,079 square meters of closed-circuit television. CCTV is the China Central Television company located in the Beijing Central Business District. The building’s odd shape, with six vertical and horizontal stretches, earned it the nickname “big pants.”
  6. USAA Headquarters, McDermott Building: Founded in San Antonio, Texas, by 25 U.S. Army offices, the USAA is an insurance network for 12.4 million members, all of whom serve or have served in the U.S. military. Managing insurance for that many takes a lot of space, which is why the McDermott Building covers 362,322 square meters.
  7. Aon Center: The Aon Center has changed in name since its construction in 1974. It was originally the Standard Oil Building until Amoco took over. It served as headquarters for the oil conglomerates; Aon, an international consulting firm, rents space in the building for its U.S. operations.
  8. One World Trade Center: Outside of New York, it’s commonly referred to as the Freedom Tower. Within the city’s five boroughs it’s simply 1 World Trade. The skyscraper was built next to the former site of the Twin Towers and is owned by the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. Underground tunnels connect the building to major transit hubs.
  9. Burj Khalifa: The United Arab Emirates prides itself on its skyscrapers, which is why the Burj Khalifa building (formerly Burj Dubai) is particularly special. The building broke multiple records, including its status as the tallest building in the world—213 meters taller than its closest competitor.
  10. Taipei 101: Formerly the Taipei World Financial Center, the Taiwan-based building was the tallest in the world until the Burj Khalifa topped out. The building is designed to withstand typhoons and earthquakes, and is the location for China’s New Year’s Eve fireworks show.

Bonus

WeWork: Now that coworking spaces are increasingly popular (learn which is better a cubicle or an open office) and a company’s workforce stretches across multiple time zones, it’s interesting to look at the total amount of office space a single company utilizes. WeWork is the biggest name in coworking and for good reason. The company currently manages 929,000-plus square meters of office space around the world. To give you a better sense, that’s more than 150 regulation soccer fields.

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What Can You Do with Real Estate Analytics?

By Jeff Revoy
Chief Operations Officer
SpaceIQ

Commercial real estate (CRE) costs are on the rise, making it more important than ever for businesses to maximize the space they have and consider expansion carefully if there’s a need to grow. As the facilities manager, you’re juggling a lot of variables, including predicting the market when forecasting your needs. The growing resources available in CRE analytics can help.

Real estate is a quickly growing tech sector. Tech solutions allow you to compile real estate analytics data and use it to drive strategic decisions. You’re the expert on what you have, how you plan to grow, and what you’ll need. Plan for your future and gain a competitive edge by using CRE analytics to predict the scope of your business’ real estate needs.

Real estate data you can use

You already have the data you need to start analyzing your commercial real estate picture, though  may be housed in different systems. The hard part can be compiling all that data in one place to paint a complete picture of what then use it to diagnose what your company needs. SpaceIQ takes CRE data out of silos with real estate forecasting software, bringing it together in a central place for optimal review.

The SpaceIQ dashboard helps facilities managers better identify trends and opportunities specific to their real estate usage. Here are some types of real estate data that show how you’re utilizing the space you have:

  • Lease cost and term: The amount of money paid (cost) over a specified time period (term). Use this information to determine net profit at one location or over all holdings; anticipate when rent may rise and when you’ll want to renegotiate your lease; and plan for future real estate purchases.
  • Square footage occupied: The total square footage of the building occupied by the tenant. This helps you determine how efficiently you’re using the space your company is paying for. Is there more available space in the building not part of your lease? Is there space not being utilized? Will you need more space in the future?
  • Occupancy capacity: The maximum number of persons a building was designed to hold. When planning for the future, how many staff desks can you add before needing to expand? Will you need to reconfigure office space to maximize efficiency?
  • Location productivity: Revenue generated at that particular office location. Location productivity allows you to compare how well one location is doing versus another. The downtown location may cost more in rent, but are more products sold there compared to a suburban branch? It can also show if you’re paying too much rent at one location or help guide decisions about repairs or upgrades at a particular building.
  • Total real estate portfolio: Real estate investments at all branches or locations your company owns. A complete picture of your real estate holdings can help you decide whether to add more or downsize, and what returns you’re making overall on your CRE investments.

Common real estate struggles companies face

Rising real estate costs are a worthy concern for facilities managers, but also compound other real estate struggles. Knowledge is the best tool to conquer common issues that might arise, including:

  • Rising lease costs burdening your balance sheet: As lease costs rise, workplace productivity must increase to justify the charges. Planning for increased real estate costs means more pressure on facilities management to keep outlays down elsewhere, and pressure on other teams to make up the difference. Understanding your lease terms can help you plan for rising expenditures.
  • Cramped occupancy prohibiting growth: Playing musical chairs with desks, conference rooms and team areas is disruptive and takes precious time away from important work. If the company is growing rapidly—whether with new staff or new products—you need as much lead-time as possible to plan for changes. It’s important to always be aware of occupancy capacity as other departments plan their growth.
  • Location, location, location (isn’t working): Location productivity isn’t just about the cost of the building, but also the potential revenue it’s bringing in. You might discover the more expensive locations are generating the most revenue, while the cheaper, less desirable locations are seeing higher employee turnover.
  • Unable to try new configurations without disruption: You think that moving the finance team to the second floor and opening up the conference space on the third will solve your problem—but how will you know until you try it? Testing new configurations can waste time, disrupt work, and potentially damage furniture. The answer: plan office configurations virtually with space planning software first to minimize disorder.
  • Difficult to gauge total cost center: You can pull up the numbers you need (lease, revenue, occupancy, space utilization), but some of this information changes rapidly. Looking at all these numbers together in order to determine total cost center requires constantly reconciling numbers to assess the current situation and plan for the future.

If you experience any of these problems, know they’re not unique to your company. By improving real estate data collection and analytics, your business can run more smoothly and get ahead of the competition.

How SpaceIQ can help

Ready to get real CRE data working for you? An integrated workplace management system (IWMS) brings critical real estate data all together in a place where it can be easily understood. IWMS software from SpaceIQ can help optimize your workplace resources, real estate portfolio, and facilities assets.

With software specifically designed to meet commercial real estate needs, SpaceIQ is your partner in effectively planning strategies with data-driven decisions.

  • Lease costs and terms are readily available in one place, and you can anticipate rising costs or increased return on investment.
  • Knowing occupancy capacity, you can work with departments to plan for changing needs. If a particular location isn’t productive, you’ll have all of the factors necessary in one report to make an argument regarding its future.
  • IWMS software can help test new layouts before moving desks and chairs.
  • You’ll see the big picture regarding your company’s real estate total cost center.

SpaceIQ software provides both aggregated real estate data and granular insights for recognizing opportunities and inefficiencies.SpaceIQ can help compile the real estate data you need, make it easy to interpret, and present it in ways others can understand. Quick access to CRE analytics allows you to focus on growing your business, and staying ahead of the competition.

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9 Advantages of Cloud-Based Facilities Management Software

By Aleks Sheynkman
Director of Engineering
SpaceIQ

Facilities management software is shifting to a new paradigm: Software-as-a-service (SaaS). Cloud-based facilities management software (SaaS) offers more features, better reliability, lower costs, and more opportunities for customization—allowing businesses to streamline operations like never before. Before making the switch to a cloud-based facility management software platform, take a look at nine advantages of a SaaS workplace management software option like SpaceIQ.

1. Accessible anywhere

The browser-based nature of SaaS facilities management platforms means they’re accessible from virtually anywhere. Because your software exists in the cloud, it’s available whenever you need it. This is particularly useful in two ways:

  1. For facilities managers who need mobile insights within their office space, such as getting floor plan data about the third floor while orchestrating a move to the sixth floor
  2. For real estate managers who have a portfolio of properties spanning multiple geographic locations. Being able to get instant occupancy data about offices in Shanghai, New York, and London makes managing global operations more efficient

Logging on anywhere there’s an internet connection puts facilities managers in a position to be more accurate and thorough in their strategies, instead of guessing or relying on outmoded information across spreadsheets or hand-written notes. Real-time insight yields real-time results through better decision-making.

2. Device Agnostic

No more Mac vs. PC or iOS vs. Android debates. It doesn’t matter what operating system your laptop is running or what network you’re on. Cloud-based SaaS facilities management platforms are device agnostic, making them viable on any device regardless of user preference.

Accessing the same information with consistency and ease across every platform unlocks seamless potential for facilities management. Coordinate a desk neighborhood on your desktop computer, respond to collaborative message on your phone, execute the move via a tablet, and review everything at home on your laptop. It doesn’t matter how many devices or operating system are in play, information and accessibility remain consistent. Best of all, you won’t lose any functionality.

3. Cloud-based security

Cloud security is some of the best in the business when it comes to preventing cyberattacks, including those against facility management software. Thanks to SOC 2, critical business data has never been safer. Cloud-based SaaS security that meets SOC 2 standards is important for a number of reasons:

  • It creates a multi-layered security blanket. Usernames and passwords must be validated in real-time and through predictive security features, such as IP screening and login habits. Extra precautions can be tacked on to logins to prevent malicious attempts.
  • Cloud security is smart enough to recognize hacking attempts and thwart them. The system will detect bots and brute-force attempts to access data, beefing up security to protect vulnerabilities that may expose data.
  • Encryption in the cloud is complex. More than just passwords and user data, all data for your business can be encrypted and hashed, so even if a breach does occur there’s no way for data thieves to use your information against you.

Before cloud-based security, a simple username and password in the wrong hands could mean a crippling data loss for businesses, including personal employee information, real estate data, and operational costs/revenue. Now, protection is greater than ever.

4. Tiered permissions and privacy

Facilities managers know better than anyone that information is on a need-to-know basis. Not everyone needs to have access to the same data. Department heads may only require access to floor plans, while financial planners and real estate managers may require robust data about multiple cost centers.

Thanks to a tiered permissions system, cloud-based facilities management software maintains information in structured, protected ways. Admins can restrict access to data based on user groups, while enabling certain permissions for select employees or departments. This not only reduces the risk of information mismanagement, it keeps proprietary data out of the hands of those who don’t need to see it. And, because permissions can be managed centrally, it’s possible for admins to instantly grant and deny access .

5. Always on, always current

Cloud products have the distinct advantage of being “always on.” They’re instantly accessible and always current to the most recent version of the data. It also means updates can be rolled out by the developer and integrated instantly by customers, closing security gaps and improving the user experience in real time.

Always-on programs also have the distinct advantage of being live—meaning data is cached and updated instantly. You can make changes and not worry about saving every few seconds—or worse, losing your hard work due to an unexpected outage. What’s done is done: Updated instantly and saved proactively—all on the most up-to-date version of the program.

6. Unlocked collaboration

Device agnosticism and the always-on nature of SaaS facilities management software combine to unlock another major benefit: real-time collaboration. A real estate manager in Los Angeles can provide reports and insights to a CFO in Hong Kong, allowing the two to make collaborative decisions about how to best utilize facilities. Moreover, a dozen department heads in the same building can collaborate on an upcoming office move, ensuring everyone is on the same page throughout the process.

Collaboration through the cloud allows more than just real-time updates on specific topics. It also keeps ideas and actions sorted and organized. Each user is uniquely identified so comments, actions, and contributions are properly delineated. Coupled with tiered permissions, it’s easy to keep communication organized, simplified, and clear.

7. Huge cost savings

What’s the cost of your current legacy facilities management software? When you tally up the licensing fee, individual user fees, software update costs, technical support fees, and hidden charges, the compounding costs can be substantial.

The reason the SaaS model has grown prolifically in recent years is because it’s much more cost-effective. The fees may be monthly or annual, but they’re profoundly less and much more inclusive. There’s unparalleled convenience in a SaaS model that’s well worth the nominal cost of licensing the software.

Even beyond the sticker price of software, huge cost savings can also be generated through the power of a cloud-based facilities management program. Better tools and more robust insights add up to better overall facilities management, lowering tangible costs across the balance sheet. Every saved cost identified through your facilities management software is another dollar in ROI.

8. Disaster-proof failsafes

What happens if your server crashes or there’s a massive power outage? Whatever you were just doing on your computer is likely gone for good, unless it’s backed up in real time to the cloud. That’s another benefit of cloud-based facilities management software. When technical issues make your network unavailable or put your computer at risk for data loss, your critical facilities data are backed up and available in the cloud for you to access on another device.

9. Supreme integration

Having access to an open Application Programming Interface (API) enables businesses to tailor the way a program works specifically to their company. This opens the door for a variety of integrations, taking the functionality of the core program up a notch. In the age of the smart office and the office Internet of Things (IoT), integration is essential. Through APIs, facilities managers can use cloud-based management software for everything from meeting room scheduling to oversight for office automations within their IoT environment.

Compounding benefits

As business becomes more tech-driven, opportunities for optimization will continue to rise. Having a cloud-based facilities management program at the root of business operations will ensure you’re equipped to not only evolve with the times, but thrive and increase productivity in an agile, unpredictable environment. Once you’ve taken the time to understand the benefits of utilizing a cloud based facility management system outlined here, it’s time to learn how to select the right facilities management software that will benefit you, your staff and your business.