Plans in Practice is a monthly series of interviews featuring CRE brokers, landlords, and tenants. Each month, the Floored team will spotlight a Plans client and discuss the role Plans plays in their leasing process.
Senior Associate, Kamis O'Farrell and Marketing Administrative Assistant, Natasha Duval explain the unique way the marketing team at MGA Realty uses Plans to illustrate design efficiency to their clients.
Floored: Tell us about your roles at MGA.
MGA: Here at MGA we have Brokers who work directly with the clients, to listen and understand their needs. That then leads us to the marketing team to show the client design efficiency and to do that we utilize Plans as a tool.
Floored: What did your space comparison and client education process look like before Plans? Why did you decide to incorporate Plans into your workflow?
MGA: We usually showed a column intensive floor plate and a column free floor plate and discussed efficiency. We would use test fits from previous projects to educate clients on efficiency and different work seat. Plans allowed us to customize space plans to prospective clients current configuration and show them how much more efficient they could be on one floor or decreasing workstation size, etc. It customized the pitch and truly engaged the prospect.
Floored: Can you tell us about a specific client in which Plans played a significant role?
MGA: We are working with a group who has multiple pockets of space. We were able to show them how they could eliminate redundancies if they relocated and reduced their footprint.
Floored: How did Plans affect the timeline of this deal?
MGA: Plans helps engage the prospect and create visuals to more rapidly continue the renewal or relocation process with their workplace.
Floored: Now that you have experience with Plans, how has using this tool changed your process or the way you think about space comparison and client education in general?
MGA: We use Plans as the first step to explaining efficiency to a client. The conversations are much more interactive now that we have a visual tool to guide these conversations. The client is actually listening and digesting what we are saying with these visual aids. In terms of space when you talk numbers, some layouts sound too packed in or too big to fit 45 work seats. We could show 45 work seats in 5k, 10k, 15k floor plans and there is a big difference in efficiency. It enables a conversation they may not have previously had.
Floored: What feature of Plans has been the biggest game changer for your team?
MGA: The best feature that we have received good feedback on is Plans's 3D layout capability. This helps when a client is still skeptical of the 2D plan and a floor plan square footage. The ability to show the different individual workspaces with varying sizes helps. The client is then able to envision themselves in the space. This allows for space visuals and even talk about glass offices, open cafés, and finishes.
Floored: In terms of usability, how easy was it to adopt Plans as a new technology?
MGA: Plans is extremely user friendly. We never get impatient with Plans. On the user end, you just need to understand the space requirements you need and how best you can create a layout for it. It saves us time for having to send out generic or specific plans to an architect and having the product lets the brokers have a quick one day turnaround. Keeping on top of the project and in contact with the client/prospect.
Floored: What is most exciting to you in the future of CRE?
MGA: Technology has made it possible for people to work remotely, show from home and order dinner and groceries without leaving their couch. However, people thrive on human interaction and being out and about. It is exciting watching CRE evolve to attract people with amenity rich, environmentally conscious and visually appeasing office, retail and residential buildings. Being in DC, in a thriving market adds to the excitement.