The verification of the Green Pass to access to workspaces has been made mandatory by the current legislation. It is therefore necessary to simplify this procedure and respect the GDRP regulation. Cloud-native access control solutions, like the ones of Sofia Locks, allow to simplify and accelerate the procedure.
The cloud-native access control systems can be configured to manage in an easy and intuitive way the Green Passes of employees who have to access workplaces. Thanks to the intuitive Smart Tag system it is possible to link the validity of a credential to the prior verification of the Green Pass.
Moreover, it is possible to configure the system in different ways, so that the Green Pass verification is asked every day or it is considered valid for more days, in case pf random checks.
Also in this context, cloud access control via smartphone allows to simplify the management of access to workspaces, by easing any integration with third-party softwares thanks to the available APIs Rest.
PropTech Perspective Days 2021 took place from the 20th to the 24th of September 2021. To the event, which has been organized by Sofia Locks, took place many leading figures of the Italian real estate market, who illustrated the pros and cons of digital innovation in the real estate.
Had we to choose a single idea from all of those illustrated during the PropTech Perspective Days, it would be the speed. This year’s theme was "the pros and cons of digital innovation in real estate", and the speed with which technological solutions are running towards a new future for the real estate market holds opportunities and challenges.
All the guests have underlined that the core of different aspects, like the new offer of services, the sustainability of buildings, the connectivity, the smart working, the return to the offices, the models of flexible living, and many other...the heart of all is the innovative energy that comes from digital technology.
Digitalization is not only important, it is essential. It is no more a plus that should be added, but it is fundamental in every product and service strategy. Francesca Pinzone, Head of Marketing and Digital @ Svicom
New opportunities have been created, but there are also new problems that have to be faced. The knowledge required to implement new real estate solutions increases, and this includes both traditional and service aspects. Design, technological choices, marketing, and customer relationship are just some of the aspects that have completely revolutionized the industry. Even in real estate a cultural revolution is going on.
Ours is a young market, it’s a strong growth market, with 25% more start-ups born in the last year. But there is still no culture of technology: a culture that must start from the idea of the project to the tenant’s management. Silvia Piacentini, technical Director @ Arexpo
On these features new competition plans are developed, no longer just the classical location, but innovative access models, services, and collaboration between the subjects involved. The market is accustomed to innovative solutions: the younger workforce expects companies to offer comfortable and interactive workspaces; those looking for a housing solution value what are the accessory characteristics and which is the social aspect of the offer. The market demand pushes the evaluation criteria of the tenants towards more articulated offers, really news for the real estate market. And we cannot fail to mention the power of smart working, which not only has questioned the calculations of square meters required by companies for workstations. From coworkings to working spaces at home, until the new concept of social life with housing complexes which offer areas of common access, in the last two years all this has been transformed from design solutions to offers that mark more and more the trend of the market.
Even the properties on the market are now in competition, the most performing building, with most services offered, is more and more interesting for the tenant. At this moment, it is necessary a partnership between the tenant and the landlord, as there is a shared interest on both sides. The tenant wants to bring people back to the office and attract new talents. While the landlord needs to attract the attention of the tenant, by offering extra services that go beyond the meeting rooms of the past. Even considering the digital experience. Federica Pedroni, Head of Workplace @ CBRE
The fundamental choice criteria, the location, maintains its importance but it is in competition with new valuation criteria. All the guests of PropTech Perspective Days have underlined that we are facing a period of great excitement, but also that there is still uncertainty in taking some choices. While the doubts due to the economic situation are diminishing in the face of new positive indicators , there remains an important step towards to do, in the acquisition of knowledge, and professional figures suitable for the imminent digital revolution. In this context, technological partners play a key role when they are able to bring not only technological solutions but also to establish a collaboration with all the subjects involved in the realization of a real estate project.
Once the tenant hardly got into the matter of access control. Today it is changing, many tenants ask what kind of plant will be implemented, and want to interact and create a common plant. This is new to us, but we are facing it very well, now we implement a sophisticated access control system everywhere, in the elevators, halls...with the App for reservation and WiFi insertion, which is now a fundamental component. Alessandro Rendina, Portfolio Manager @ Savills IM SGR
Therefore, there are new challenges, in which it is necessary to make strategic decisions on elements that once were not part of the design, and now have a fundamental role. One technological solution doesn't worth the other, and it is necessary to know the differences and peculiarities, in a context in which the system design has more weight in terms of expenditure but also the success of the real estate project. Buildings have a new digital dimension, which changes the relationship between landlord, tenant, and user. As we have seen, it changes the demand that drives landlords and tenants to compete on products more fragmented, but with higher quality. On the other hand, a flexible offer is born, which allows you to attract a different audience and make the most out of areas that once were considered too peripheral.
An experience must be customized not only on the basis of the building but also on the type of area. If we decide that within a building in Via Tortona we offer a series of services by creating an effective technological tool for that type of building, the same cannot be exported to Bovisa or Affori, because we will have a target with different needs. It is necessary to be familiar with the area, and have flexible designer partners, that should think about which services are really needed. Luisa Crupi, COO @ Abitare Co
The team around the design or revaluation of a modern building must be versatile. The new model of space commercialization considers aspects that go beyond what was required in the real estate market of the past. The hybridization between product and service brings real estate marketing closer to that of sectors in which the attention to the end-user makes the difference. The employees of one or more companies, the residents of an apartment building or a neighborhood, are now a community. An organic reality towards which the commercialization of products goes through new ways of communication and the satisfaction can only be granted through the phygital paradigm, the right mix of digital and physical which permeates modern life.
I addition to services, also the building of a community, which is enabled by technology, is fundamental for these projects. If I have a person in charge of building a start-up community and dealing with 1500 people, a technological system is the only tool to enable it. It is necessary a neighborhood or condominium application that connects the people who live within that context. Alessandro Boscarini, COO @ Borio Mangiarotti
Companies are already facing this situation. New realities and projects are born (for example Wellio, to mention a project with which Sofia Locks collaborates), and the best market players have already shown how it is possible to create new value and respond effectively to periods of uncertainty. The city of Milan can be seen as a laboratory, as our guests have told us. Different experiences, but all with the same aim of searching for innovative solutions, in recognizing the human side of technology, and the desire of people to find the support of technology in everyday life.
Until now, our management part was more on real estate, so property management, facility, and also project...are more oriented to the property, to the more efficient use of the building. Today, however, our attention is more oriented toward the person. With the new paradigm of the real estate market, even investors have changed their approach. For us, the big innovation will be on the human side. Tenant care will be a great innovation area, to maximize the level of employment. Raffaella Pinto, Head of Business Dev. @ Cushman & Wakefield
Technology is no more something far away and hidden. Today technology is an interface, next to people, whether they are users, decision makers, facilitators. From interaction to data reading, technology changes spaces or adds a new dimension in which people can move. These talks have taught us to refuse the contrast between technology and human presence. The period of forced distance that we had to face has shown us how technology is not a divisive factor, as some believed. People have moved away from central offices, but instead of moving away, people have come together in new communities: coliving, coworking, cohousing, smart neighborhoods, ...
Today, we are talking about creating a CRM, to analyze what services users want inside the building. Analyze big data, to see what preferences there are in terms of services, the most used spaces, the correct size of a specific space: how big must be the gym of a given building? Or how much space for a parcel store? All these answers are not only given by the creativity of the architect but must also be based on statistics, on data, on what actually happens. Giovanni Maria Mancini, Founder & CEO @ Top Life Concierge
Beyond uncertainties, our guests have outlined a fairly clear future, in which technology and people proceed hands by hands to better understand how to meet human needs. In the future, the ones who will make the difference should be able to combine physical and digital with the intelligence of a human approach. For this reason, we, as well as our guests, look for high-value partnerships. Sofia Locks provides all its technological knowledge and its privileged point of the market. These were the Proptech Perspective Days of 2021, an exceptional overview of real estate thanks to the guests and their willingness to share experiences and synergies to respond to a market that demands human innovation.
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The program of the event
Pros and cons of the digital revolution in the real estate (in Italian) with: Silvia Piacentini, Technical Director Arexpo, Francesca Pinzone, Head of Marketing & Digital Svicom
Designing the real estate market of the future: technology as an enabling factor (in Italian) with: Federica Pedroni, Head of Workplace CBRE, Alessandro Rendina, Portfolio Manager SavillsInvestment Management
Coliving and cohousing: sustainability, scalability, and sharing (in Italian) with: Luisa Crupi, COO Abitare Co, Alessandro Boscarini, COO Borio Mangiarotti
Live digital: the value of services in the real estate (in Italian) with: Raffaella Pinto, Head of Business Development Cushman & Wakefield, Giovanni Maria Mancini, Founder & CEO TopLife Concierge
The affirmation of innovative solutions in the technological field and the establishment of new paradigms, like the Internet of Things (IoT) and the Data Management, have led the way to innovative scenarios, where the cognitive and decision making processes about the management of the building event are the main issue. Digital technologies produce a great amount of data, useful to define strategies aimed at cost reduction and the improvement of building performance and service quality. These cutting-edge solutions have revolutionized the whole facility management approach.
Facility managements trends
Facility management should ensure a good environment within the building, and support people and activities, by providing the appropriate functionality and quality of experience. To do so, managers should understand and address social, business and process issues that impact the infrastructures. Smart solutions allow facility managers to do so, as they empower problem solving, give rise to new opportunities and enable an approach aimed at expanding their role and capabilities. The trend is growing, as the facility management services are predicted to grow from 39.5 billion in 2020 to USD 65.5 billion by 2025, at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 10.6% during the forecast period, as stated by the Market and Market Analysis.
Facility management software
Facility management solutions must be multi-level now, they should enable an easy management of all the processes, from the real estate management, to asset maintenance, workplace relocation, and reservation management. Managers must be able to do all these operations in any moment, everywhere and from any devices, this is where cloud technology comes into play. Cloud-native solutions have been designed to support facility management, as they enable the remote and on-side management of many different locations. The multi-side management allows to control all the premises from one single panel, switching from one location to the others with just a click. Also the workplace relocation and the reservation management are simplified thanks to cloud technology, as it makes spaces become flexible and modular, and they can be reshaped along with users' needs. Moreover, it allows to improve the autonomy of the users, as the booking process is fully self-service, and of the managers, as they can manage all the permissions through a single panel. Cloud-native solutions not only allow the facility management to become multi-level, but also enhance security and collaboration among users and subsidiaries present in all the multiple locations, they also represent a secure hosting of critical data, and an instrument to optimize a quick disaster recovery.
Therefore, the real value of facility management is the ability to empower the development of the technological solutions that are becoming widespread in our society, like Cloud Computing, and the Internet of Things. These technologies are not only changing the facility management, by improving the management process from the efficiency, quality and speed point of view, but they are also enhancing the redesigning of cities, to give life to smart cities. At Sofia Locks we are aware that technology should merge with the buildings and the surroundings and become natural in our environment, in this way it will create value for citizens, business, and institutions, and the whole society.
An interview to Federica Pedroni, Head of Workplace @ CBRE Italy
Written by Anna Gnemmi, Digital Marketing Manager @ Sofia Locks in collaboration with Alessandro Nacci, CEO @ Sofia Locks
In the last years, the real estate market has faced many changes, the pandemic has accelerated many trends and revolutionized the conventional definition of workplace and home. The concept of space has now a different meaning, it has become modular, flexible, smart, and designed to meet fast-changing needs.
In the last ten years, offices have undergone many changes, there has been a transition from the traditional model to the activity based working model, characterized by different work settings that can accommodate several types of activities. Today this model is adopted by more and more companies, according to their different shapes. As a matter of fact, it is increasing the number of businesses that embrace more and more collaborative models, like the team-based, the socializing HUB, or the event-based. The model is usually preferred on the basis of the business strategy, although the aim is shared: create proactive spaces, in which productivity and socializing are promoted, that attracts new talents, and that supports commitment and brand value.
In an interview for Proptech Perspective, Federica Pedroni, Head of Workplace at CBRE Italy has provided us with a comprehensive overview of the continuous changes that the workplaces had to face to comply with the new circumstances, and to meet the new needs.In this article, we are going to analyze this topic and provide useful information to interpret this period of strong evolution.
The evolution of the working space
The flexible working spaces are becoming the new standard of the real estate market. With this term, there are meant spaces that do not have assigned workstations, but a series of work settings that can be occupied according to the different needs. In this way it is possible to use resources based on the activities to be carried out in a functional way, for example, there are meeting rooms designed to meet customers or make video calls, others smaller for individual calls, or environments designed to stimulate cooperation and teamwork. The spaces can be more or less formal and modular, to adapt to the needs of the different employees.
More and more companies are planning to modify their layout and adopt more agile ones, especially after the adoption of smart working models
More and more companies are planning to modify their layout and adopt more agile ones, especially after the adoption of smart working models. A shift forced during the pandemic, but intended to remain during the “new normal”. In the case smart working will reduce the average office presence by 50%, traditional models with assigned workstations will be no longer functional. The office will become a place where to collaborate, and home a place where to concentrate. For these reasons the spaces dedicated to individual activities will be reduced to increase the collaborative ones, where people can work in teams, join meetings, greet clients, and make calls. In this way not only the business flexibility is improved, but also the layout management has got better, spaces are not wasted, and costs are reduced.
The office still remains a place of fundamental importance, as it allows people to meet each other and socialize, and it is indispensable for the business policies
Despite the many changes, the office still remains a place of fundamental importance, as it allows people to meet each other and socialize, and these are aspects from which you can not disregard for the maintenance of well-being and individual creativity. Moreover, it is indispensable for the business policies, to attract, train and cultivate new talents, and improve the commitment, the sense of community, and the brand awareness. To reach these goals businesses have to provide their employees comfortable and innovative spaces, provided with cutting-edge solutions, able to meet their expectations, and create the right employee experience.
Technology becomes an added value and an enabling factor
By reducing the square meters dedicated to desks and cutting costs it is possible to dedicate more resources to the comfort and the elegance of spaces, which improve the sense of belonging of employees. This is a fundamental factor not only for tenants, but also for landlords, that can offer flexible, modular, and comfortable spaces, in which technology is not only a means to optimize operations, but an instrument to improve the value of the building and generate added value.
Through smart building both managers and guests can gain many advantages. Thorugh modern solutions tenants and facility managers can:
Have precise information on the number of people in agivenenvironment in real-time, to improve the security and safety of the building;
Manage peak crowding , by verifying the status of the different locations in any moment;
Manage spaces and resources through business smart devices;
Gain statistics on the use of spaces for future optimization of the space management.
Many are the advantages coming from the self-service logic, available to users. Through smart solutions they can:
Verify the work setting availability inreal-time through the personal smartphone and the given application;
Book the resources available autonomously. Thanks to the digital booking engine integrated with business systems it is possible to delete and/or modify bookings through the user interface;
Have information on the state of occupancy of the building, to better organize the presence of people in the building;
Have a tool of interaction and collaboration with colleagues that merge in a single interface the physical and the digital side, along with the phygital paradigm (here an in-depth analysis).
Cloud-native technologies allow integrations between third parties systems that cover the specific needs of the different business units
To gain these advantages it is necessary to have cloud-native technologies, as they allow integrations between third parties systems that cover the specific needs of the different business units. This allows access control technologies, as the one of Sofia Locks, and network technologies, as the one of Cisco Meraki, to have cutting-edge systems for space management. An example is the statistical detection of occupancy of spaces, which allows tracking the crowding of workspaces thanks to the integration of access control systems provided with smart locks, and Wifi and Bluetooth infrastructures.
In the case study carried out at the business district Segreen Segrate, near Milan, when an employee connects to the company networks or opens a door with the badge or the smartphone it is possible to know the exact number of people in that room. Assuming that a user goes through a gateway without using the authentication tool, for example, whether a colleague opens the office door to another, it will still be possible to know the exact number of people in the room by recovering the name through the internet network, the WiFi or by verifying the booking of the resources.
“Verify that the idea of the workplace of the future is possible, and the project can be implemented and monitored are the main issues related to change management. After having done all the analysis to verify which spaces can better support the business and its operability, the project should be verifiable and monitorable in every moment, to measure the efficiency and effectiveness. In this way, the office could be used correctly”. What stated by Federica Pedroni to PropTech Perspective is perfectly in line with one of the main values deriving from digital transformation: extracting value from data.
Embracing the value of the data and presenting it in an intelligible way is fundamental to cope with change management
Embracing the value of the data and presenting it in an intelligible way is fundamental to cope with change management. Sofia Locks cloud-native solutions allow anexhaustive analysis of data, and the full control of space and information. Technology enables the interpretation of data and the creation of graphics, which allow to observe the development of the building and the single resources. In this way, it is easier to predict future scenarios and take appropriate actions. All this is GDPR compliant, data is aggregated and anonymized, not to harm the privacy of people.
The importance of flexibility
Data is not the only essential element to make innovation, also the right technologies are needed. Having plug&play technologies, easy to install, that do not require big plants, and allow a more effective experimentation is essential to enable flexible workplaces.
Wireless technology enables the creation of pilots to test new ways of working without having to face big initial investments, stop the operations of the building, and replace any legacy technologies
An example are the access control solutions. Thanks to wireless technologies, it is possible to enables the creation of pilots to test new ways of working without having to face big initial investments, stop the operations of the building, and replace any legacy technologies. In this way, it is possible to have an agile approach to the introduction of smart technologies for buildings and businesses. Cloud-native solutions enable a new, non-invasive way to deploy new technologies through hardware virtualization.
Connection is no more a simple word, it represents our society and the world we are living in. Being a connected generation, which is always in touch with other users through our digital network, has changed the way we act. Now we expect to always have all the information we need at our fingertips, whenever we seek them out, we search and browse them, or we want to share them with friends and family. Although to do so, we need digital tools, like smartphones, laptops, or computers. These devices are always with us, they are the first thing we check in the morning and the last thing we control before going to bed; we use them to work, during our free time, and also when we run errands. We are always connected, and so are the smart solutions that surround us.
Smart solutions are always connected to each other, and, most importantly, they are connected to the cloud
Smart solutions are always connected to each other, as they continuously exchange data, and, most importantly, they are connected to the cloud. Whether familiar with the topic, you will also know that today we are often in contact with the digital twin of the objects around us. Digital twins have become an increasingly widespread concept when the advancement of Industry 4.0 has accelerated its growth. They can be defined as the effortless integration of data between a physical and virtual machine in either direction (A.Fuller, 2020), or, in a simpler way, as the digital copy of the objects that surround us (like home and office appliances or means we use daily like cars or bikes) that communicate with the users through their smartphone or any other personal device. Thanks to digital twins you can now, for example, book a bicycle and have the coordinates to reach it through the cloud, as the bike itself gives them to you. You could also book a working station in your favorite coworking spacein the city center, and find everything set up along with your needs (from the desk to the wifi), so that you just need to park your bike and enter the building. Once you have access to the coworking every door on your path will open, as the building itself welcomes you. Thanks to digital twins and cloud technology smart cities come alive and offer a seamless experience.
Mobile credential become the answer to all the different accessibility needs, the smartphone becomes the “key” to access all the services
Smart technologies not only allow people to manage resources and buildings but also improve citizens’ lives. Imagine you could access parking and means of transportation with your smartphone, without trying to find a safe place to park your bicycle and push scooter every time, queuing at the station every morning, or struggling to take tickets on the different websites. Abris sécurisés, for example, is a service providing secure bicycle shelters in the city of Paris. Thanks to it people can park their bike in a safe place whether they need it or they don’t have a place at their home. Smart shelters not only incentivize people to move with a sustainable means, safeguarding the planet but also allow them to save time and resources, as their vehicle could be parked in a smart place with just a click. Virtual credentials become the answer to all the different accessibility needs, as the smartphone becomes the “key” to access all the different services in a city.
FULLY FUNCTIONAL SOLUTIONS ARE ESSENTIAL TO FORESEE FUTURE SCENARIOS AND TAKE APPROPRIATE ACTIONS
Therefore, it can be noticed that the whole abstract concept of “access” has changed. Now people can access not only spaces, but also resources, and they can do it through different digital tools, in a simpler and easier way, whenever they need it. The advent of modern technologies has revolutionized not only the user’s experience but also the manager’s ones. Fully functional solutions allow managers to simplify the operations, to understand the degree of utilization of spaces and resources, and to gain important data, useful to foresee future scenarios and take appropriate actions.
Initiatives to redesign cities and make them smarter and more sustainable are increasing worldwide. Smart solutions are fundamental to reach this goal, Sofia Locks is aware of this and, for this reason, it has developed an advanced access control engine that fits any kind of solution. Technology allows smart cities to be understood as communities in which citizens, businesses, and institutions collaborate to achieve systems integration and efficiency, citizen engagement, and a continually improving quality of life. In this context, technology has also to streamline operations, ease people’s lives and managers operations, lower efforts and cut costs to get things done, make spaces and assets accessible when they are needed, and enforce security. When this is all accomplished technology disappears, and becomes natural in our environment and our society. We at Sofia Locks believe that this will happen soon, for this reason, we integrate cloud-native technologies, since those are the technologies that are coupled with our values.
At the Segreen business park in Segrate, Milan, we have recently developed an innovative access control project through to the integration of two cloud-native technologies:with the contribution of CBRE, thanks to cloud-native access control solutions of Sofia Locks and the network technologies of Cisco, and the collaboration of one of our certified system integrator, we have provided an integrated technology that allows the use of a modern access control system, that grants a grater safety for the building to a well-known multinational in the field of imaging.
Thanks to Sofia Locks technology we have given the client the possibility to authorize the business employees ton access spaces via smartphone, after having booked a working station through the same digital platform. Given the customer's desire not to install turnstiles, to make spaces freer and less constrained, a more accurate esteem of the number of people in the building was needed. To solve this issue it has been made an integration with Cisco cloud-native network systems, to have specific information on the number of people in the building. The system integrates the logs deriving from the access control with the ones form the network accesses, to count how many people arei the building in real-time. This system also allows to give instant information in case of emergency.
What is Segreen Segrate?
Segreen Segrate is an eco-sustainable business park made through the upgrading of a large real estate complex, the former Microsoft headquarters.
This innovative structure provides workplaces, recreational areas, long pedestrian paths, huge green areas, and many services, like auditoriums, bars, fitness centers, and bike and car rental. The use of access control systems in this kind of spaces allows a strong reduction of management costs, as well as the possibility of offering value-added services for tenants thanks to PropTech technologies and the digitalization of spaces.
Whether interested on this topic, visit PropTech Perspective.
The impact of an increasingly uncertain future on the residential market
Millennials are the most cultured and educated generation, as stated in an article by theEconomist, although it is also the one that finds the most obstacles in archiving professional goals. The supply of highly educated workers is greater than the absorption capacity of the market, consequently, 39% of people under 25 years old are unemployed or underemployed. Moreover, as stated by the New York Times, people in the 18-34 group earn less than the previous generation in the same age group.
Millennials are financially fragile and this is also confirmed by the Washing Post poll, which states that:
63% of Millennials would have difficulty covering an unexpected expense of 500$;
Only 6% think to earn more than necessary to cover basic needs. For women it is 3%;
44% would use $ 5.000 in lottery winnings to pay bills and loans.
However, even if Millennials are not in a good economic position, they are able to fight the uncertain and fast-changing future thanks to their creativity and their ability to think out of the box.
Along with an HR survey , Millennials are prone to team working and collaboration and think that cooperation is essential to give life to better work. All this has led to the increase of the sharing-economy which consists in peer-to-peer performances that allow the access to shared goods and services (Forrester).
Not only the working perception is changed, but also the living one. The concept of “home” has been modernized and has given light to residential solutions, the most spread in Europe is the coliving.
In a period characterized by increasing urban land use and sharing economy, coliving provides modern and flexible solutions, in line with the consumption habits and lifestyle of the young generation.
In this way, the use of common spaces and the social cohesion between residents is optimized.
What is coliving?
The coliving modern form of living based on the idea of sharing living spaces. It has been developed in recent years in response to the rise of the rental market both in Europe and in other developed countries.
Coliving has provided to be the perfect housing solution for different age groups, both for young Millennials looking for shared experience within communities, and for elderly people looking for company.
Living in a coliving means renting a private space, like a study or a bedroom with a restroom, in a building in which the other areas are shared with other residents.
It promotes the formation of a community, while allowing autonomy in the private areas, and also a reduction of the rent.
In fact, just like coworking offer young entrepreneurs the spaces and tolls needed at a fraction of the cost of a traditional office coliving helps reduce the cost of living by providing access to an environment where people can benefit from the experience of sharing spaces and lifestyles.
It is a new interpretation of an old idea, thought by a generation that gives value to open-mindedness, collaboration, social networks, and the sharing economy.
Coliving in Europe and Italy
According to a study conducted by JLL the main coliving structures are based in the big capitals of the most important Countries of the old continent.
In Europe, almost 40% of the market is based in London and Amsterdam, while 25% is distributed between 24 big cities. This means that the growth potential is huge not only for big capitals but also for smaller cities.
Also the Italian market sees the presence of more and more important players in the sector. HOMIZY is an example, it is the new initiative of the Abitare In Group, that, in March 2021 completed the transition to the telematic stock market (MTA) in the Star segment, becoming the only company active in the development of the real estate sector in Piazza Affari (abitareinspa.com).
In the proposal of Abitare In, the family is the main focus and the house becomes an aspirational product. This phenomenon has been further emphasized by the lockdown experience, in which it has emerged the importance for families to have a house provided with spaces dedicated to study and to work, and large open spaces.
The pandemic not only has modified users’ needs, but has also accelerated changes that were already underway, and has led to a general increase in sales prices.
In this context projects like HOMIZY of Abitare In"are born to launch a new product line dedicated to the young professional segment, bringing the concept of sharing economy in the world of the living, that is a market based on the coliving formula for young workers. They could live together through smart and trendy housing solutions, provided with common spaces, working ones, and entertainment ones, with the possibility of developing professional and human relationships.”
The value of the digital transformation
The technological innovation, as stated by Marco Grillo the CEO of Abitare In SPA, becomes fundamental to optimize internal processes, like the creation of new selling opportunities, the management of customer services, and the personalization of products.
Smart locking technologies become an enabling factor to increase business scalability by providing the company with digital tools that improve the complete automation of the business processes.
Digital marketing enables large-scale lead search, that is then converted to client through a completely digital “in-app” customer journey, and an integrated management of contracts, payments, and invoicing.
Access to digital space is then made possible through the smartphone, thanks to technologies like the one of Sofia Locks.
Millennials, sharing economy, and digital
Technological innovation and the actual economical situation have given rise to critical changes in the society. Not only the work conception has changed, but also the living one.
The living environment has become flexible, founded on sharing and social cohesion, spaces are optimized and the bond creation is highlighted through coliving structures.
The sharing economy becomes a tool to become autonomous and independent for a whole generation, the Millennials one, which lives uncertain times compared with the previous generations.
Technology becomes a fundamental aspect to accelerate the sharing economy and embrace digital innovation, as it allows to improve the internal processes and the management of clients, simplify the management of different seats, and personalize the products on the basis of the different customers needs.
Understanding the market and act accordingly today
The development of Internet of Things solutions, the greater availability of data, and the improvement of artificial intelligence have allowed the facility management world to be central in the digital innovation processes of organizations and companies. facility management is configured as the process of design, implementation, and control through which the facilities (i.e. the buildings and the services necessary to support the business of the company) are managed, in order to ensure the levels of service suitable to meet business needs while creating a quality working environment at the best economic conditions possible. Facility management, therefore, represents a range of discipline and services necessary to ensure the functionality, safety, security, efficiency, and comfort of the whole environment, so buildings, infrastructures, and the real estate.
Smart technologies allow companies to gain critical insights on how to optimize the management and several facets of the facility
The facility management can be divided in hard and soft. The first one deals with space and infrastructures (i.e. space management, management and optimization of the workplace, technical management of buildings, energy management, waste management, and indoor and outdoor cleaning), while the second one is performed by people and organization (i.e. health, hygiene, safety and security, internal services, ICT, and internal logistics). By using this term it can be also meant the facilities management systems and software. These systems use sensors and smart devices to generate a great amount of data. Smart technologies are fundamental, as their cognitive capability allows to analyze data and learn from them, in this way managers can have real-time visibility, improve predictive maintenance and productivity, and cut costs. These solutions allow organizations to gain critical insights on how to optimize the management and several facets of the facility. Moreover, the effectiveness of these systems can be improved by integrating workplace management systems.
Modern technologies have changed the whole smart facility management approach
The advent of modern technologies, such as cloud computing, has increased the whole smart facility management approach. Fully functional solutions significantly simplify the operations of facility management, especially the central monitoring and the control of the systems and technologies used. They also provide managers the ability to unify the management of multiple geographically dispersed facilities, to have remote control of the locations without being physically present, to centralize interventions in the system in the event of a situation in the building or the needs of its user, to store information about actions taken by individual users and groups, and to cut costs. Thanks to smart technology it is also possible to find out which is the degree of utilization of spaces and resources, in this way it can be recommended an upsell of new spaces or it can be foreseen that the tenant will soon ask to leave the space rented.
Data is fundamental, as it allows managers to predict possible future scenarios and take appropriate actions
Sofia Locks access control solutions are designed to optimize facility management. Data allows managers to be always updated on the activities and the real estate units thanks to the integrated Business Intelligence, in this way the usage frequency of the resources can be analyzed, and trends can be observed. Also, cybersecurity and GDPR compliance are granted as cloud-native systems are secure-by-design. Sofia Locks knows that data has become fundamental in the digital world we are all living in, not only as it allows to process information in every moment, but also because it allows managers to predict possible future scenarios and take appropriate actions. A data-driven approach should be always used when talking about facility management, as it allows managers to foresee risks and understand the huge value that comes from data, to design in an anecdotal way the future strategy of the business.
Sofia Locks and Peoplelink provide modern solutions to manage spaces, personnel, operations, safety, and security. Today in Italy there are too many companies that carry out in a traditional form (even with paper) activities that can be digitalized, obtaining a significant reduction of costs, and an increase of flexibility and security.
The boundle Sofia Locks and Peoplelink allow to immediately activate the smart working logic in the companies. This is how the flexible workplace works.
From smart working to flexible workplace
Smart working is a very fashionable expression used to point out the latest trend of the labor market. This revolution has had a great impact on many aspects of companies and professional lives, and it is necessary to manage it, to ensure a growing future.
Who better understands all the aspects of this change considers it more correct to speak aboutflexible workplacethat is, of spaces dedicated to work that adapt to the needs of those who work, and to the activities that must be carried out. This is, in fact, the most interesting aspect, the change in perspective that led to a situation in which people used to adapt to their work needs (the exemplary case of commuters) to a whole new context in which spaces and resources adapt to the needs of workers. This is exactly the paradigm of flexibility.
Offices have become spaces open to productivity, creativity, and shared life, which facilitate the networking and the exchange of knowledge
The three Bs of flexibility: Bricks, Bytes, Behaviour
Whether driven by a need for innovation or a necessity, many companies soon realized that flexible working models increase productivity and improve the whole environment. Offices are no longer seen as simple workplaces, but as spaces open to productivity, creativity, and shared life, which facilitate the networking and the exchange of knowledge. The increase in productivity and greater resilience of the company organization can be achieved by respecting three fundamental principles: space, digitization, and good practices.
Bricks, the space:offices are first and foremost places where people spend a great part of their day, and their features influence the quality of the work done. Open and private areas must be well distributed and designed to meet the needs of employees. The resources (such as meeting rooms or work devices) must be available and easily shared. To create a productive operating environment spaces must be designed down to the last detail, to adapt them to the needs of the business, and the security and safety of workers. Open space supports the collaboration, while private rooms the development of specific tasks.
Bytes, the digitalization:today the smartphone is the answer to many daily needs. After having been the means to reach all the digital services that have facilitated our lives, it has also begun to interact with physical objects (today it is normal to use a rental car through a smartphone). Millennials, which are the young workforce today, are accustomed to get almost everything through mobile, from interactions with colleagues to the organization of work plans, to daily operations, up to access to offices and the use of printers. Each action can be carried out through the personal smartphone in a smart working environment.
Behaviour, the best practices:the working environment involves both the personal and the relational dimensions of people. For this reason, it is fundamental that the operativity and the management of employees are supported by adequate tools that facilitate to the maximum the fluidity of the job. From security and presence checks to reporting, a system with modern standards avoids problems and difficulties. A safe and secure sharing of information allows everyone to access what they need for their work while keeping the company safe and always updated with the latest protection standards.
Flexible working is revolutionizing the labor market and increasing business flexibility, although, to do so, adequate technological solutions are needed
Sofia Locks and Peoplelink offer
Sofia Locks and Peoplelink stand up for their innovative offers designed for the enterprise world. The bundle of products and services allows companies to realize in a very short time a complete workspace. Here is what included in the package:
Cloud-native access control with smart locks:the cloud-native access control system is always updated, and it is compatible both with smartphones, and MIFARE badges. It allows managers to control who can access spaces and resources in real-time, to manage users from any device, and to keep safe and secure the whole company. The solution is plug&play, provided with smart locks, designed to suit any type of European gateway, and wireless.
Smart management of resources and bookings:smart management of the access to the resources and their booking is fundamental for the safe implementation of the smart working standards. Resources such as meeting rooms or lockers can be assigned with the resource sharing logic and can be booked autonomously by users only when needed.
Real-time analysis of spaces and resources use:all the data about the use of spaces and resources are available in real-time, to optimize the operativity and the analysis of consumptions. Thanks to the advanced control panel it is possible to manage security standards and to create new business opportunities. Organize and check the access of individuals and groups to rooms, buildings, or resources has never been easier.
Attendees report: the concept of attendees reports has been revolutionized with the development of the first software designed to ease this process. Thanks to the specific system it is possible to manage with a click not only the acquisition of attendances, but also the organization of holidays, travel, and any justification in the field of human resources. The data collected through reports and statistical plans also allow to improve staff management flows.
Smart management of human resources:thanks to automation it is possible to have a complete suite of functions that allow to have all the processes related to human resources under control, from personal management to approval workflow, from employees evaluation form to training courses, from the timesheet reporting to the business activities management, from production reward to penalties, and from the vacation plan management to the hours of overtime statistics, sick days or general status of the workforce.
Expense reports and accountability:accountability and expense reports should be managed everytime that an employee should do a business trip or meet clients and collaborators, by paying in advance. Thanks to web, paperless, and mobile solutions it is possible to autonomously manage the whole process, from the approval workflow to the payment. This one can be supplied in different ways, with a credit on the bank account, on the payslip, or on the expense report, always in compliance with company policies.
The working environment has changed rapidly and the consequences on the market have been many. In this context, companies need digital solutions to keep up with the continuous changes. Flexible working is revolutionizing the labor market and increasing business flexibility, although, to do so, adequate technological solutions are needed. Sofia Locks and Peoplelink allow companies to embrace the digital revolution, gaining a working space provided with everything that is necessary to ensure users and managers maximum flexibility and security.
“Data is the new oil, and that’s a good thing” states Kiran Bhageshpur, the CEO of Igneous on Forbes. Data have a crucial role in our society today, as they are daily used to make the management of the processes more efficient and effective, support strategic decisions, and improve productivity (in case you are interested in these themes you can subscribe to our newsletter, PropTech Perspective). Real estate is facing a period of great changes, characterized by an increase of international transactions, a more precise segmentation of customers, a faster spread of trends, and much more. All this is possible thanks to Data Intelligence and Big-Data Analytic instruments. "Analytics and artificial intelligence are now an investment priority for Italian companies, although, to set up a data-driven company it is necessary to have the right instruments, which should simplify and automate the complex work that is between the production of data and its transformation into valuable information”, as stated by IBM.
The current business scenarios are continuously changing and therefore they are complex to read. For this reason, statistical analysis and simulations are necessary to predict the behavior of markets and elaborate strategic decisions for companies. A precise and updated information framework allows businesses to foresee alternative and scalable scenarios and therefore to pursue the most advantageous strategies, providing the most appropriate measures and countermeasures in relation to the different contexts, as underlined by theItalian PropTech Network (IPN). This predictive capacity, which should be “data-based” and linked to the potential of new technological-digital tools, can be applied in every field of the professional services chain of Real Estate, from the investment-risk evaluation phase to the optimization of costs and operations. Moreover, the improvement of the predictive ability can make many products and services more resilient, generating a “new Real Estate”, able to make the offer more flexible. The changes in the market caused by the Covid-19 pandemic have brought to life many considerations, as “ the coronavirus has not only created social distancing but has also affected people’s life perspectives. This has changed not only living and working choices but has also impacted the demand and the offer in the Real Estate market. The market is now going towards more flexible solutions, that meet the needs of the users" (Diego Camponigro, 2020).
Smart access control systems allow to record in real-time access information, making them available through integrated platforms of Business Intelligence
Sofia Locks access control solutions are developed to allow managers to gather and use data regarding the usage of spaces and real estate units. Smart access control systems record in real-time access information, making them available through integrated platforms of Business Intelligence. The use of real-time data streaming, no-code technologies, artificial intelligence and data-analytics systems allow managers to analyze in detail the frequency of use of spaces, both on a punctual basis, and by observing trends in time. In this way, it is possible to understand how to optimize the use of spaces, like coworkings, and the level of use of a building by a tenant. In this way, it can be recommended an upsell of new spaces or it can be foreseen that the tenant will soon ask to leave the space rented. It is, therefore, necessary to develop information systems that grant both cybersecurity and GDPR compliance. Obtaining the right level of compliance and security is difficult with legacy platforms, for this reason, Sofia Locks cloud-native solutions are based on asecure by design approachand are thought to be used as a data analysis instrument in the design phase. Along with the compliance, the standard ISO 27001 should be respected not only from the technical point of view but also by the suppliers, to grant the lower risk of data leakage. It is fundamental to have suppliers with a clear business model, to have complete transparency on the usage of the data gathered (your suppliers’ revenues come from the service he offers or from the data he gathers?). Who takes part in this word, both client or supplier, should be ready to use a data-driven approach to digital solutions. He should be able to evaluate risks related to cybersecurity and understand the huge value that comes from data, to design in an anecdotal way the future strategy of the business.
About Sofia Locks
Smart access. Digital control.
Sofia Locks provides PropTech access control solutions that support security and collaboration. We help market leaders in digitalization and new business designing. We already serve key players in the flexible spaces sector (co-working, co-living, retail, and companies of several industries. What makes us a preferred partner is our offering mix of security and business know-how.