The Leader Magazine

MAR 2018

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 17 of 55

F E A T U R E A R T I C L E entered the data into Excel spreadsheets, put the spreadsheets next to one another, and compared them. We would identify the critical points of data that we wanted to measure and collect all that information to guide our decision-making. It was a painstaking process. Over time we've been able to digitize much of the process, and that has enabled us to expand our scope and improve results. Our analytics incorporate internal finance systems, HR systems, our Integrated Workplace Management System, and other sources, including the BenchCoRE platform. BenchCoRE helps us look beyond our own company and benchmark our real estate performance against the performance of other top-level peer organizations. We pour all the data into a massive Oracle-based Data Mart – finance, building management, people data, business-unit data, and performance of all our global services. We then extract Tableau-based dashboards to report on the data we're looking for. A primary key to our analytics strategy is an internal client survey, called our Cisco Work Profile Survey, that we do every two years. We achieve a strong response rate, so the data's accuracy is high. We analyze the data to segment our workers by five different work-profile personas. Each persona has different needs in terms of the type of workspace they expect and the type of technology to enable them. This analysis also helps us understand the workforce's engagement level and how that workforce is evolving. What do they appreciate about the workplace? What don't they like? What do they expect, and what technology will they need in the future? The data trends can provide predictive analytics to tell us how the workforce will continue to change. In doing this over the past eight years, we've identified clear trends that follow a specific flow, so it's accurate in telling us what our workforce expects. For instance, how many days do people typically work off-site or in the office? How do they expect that to change in the future? Do they expect to be in the office more or less? We have flexible work policies at Cisco, but they're very group- and role-specific; people can't work anywhere at any time wherever they like. There has to be an agreement between the management teams and the individuals on where and how they'll work. So, our average global workforce can work a couple of days a week outside of the office and the rest of the time in a Cisco office. As we look at the data, we can start to predict how workforce policies might change and how that would affect our global footprint. Using analytics to find true occupancy levels One of the more significant contributors to our analytics is sensor data. Finding the true occupancy of your buildings is kind of the Holy Grail, which we in corporate real estate (CRE) have been going after for decades. Now, with sensor data measuring the actual occupancy of space throughout the day, we have the hard numbers necessary for sound analytics. We no longer rely on guess work or what we once called "bed checks." We can know the actual occupancy of a space, hour by hour, day by day, and then determine average occupancy. We know which days have higher or lower occupancy than others, and we can use that data to better inform our programming exercises, to configure conference rooms, and for other design processes. Aggregating and deploying data has enabled us to implement a "fit-for-purpose" design. We look at occupancy and use over six-month periods. That helps us determine, for example, if we need smaller huddle rooms or larger conference rooms. We want the space to be fully occupied for cost efficiency, and we know that well-used space generates excitement and buzz in the workplace. We also want to understand how much quiet space is required, how much private space, how much collaborative space, and how the conference rooms are being occupied. We work with an unassigned "neighborhood" concept that delivers the space that each group needs to function properly. One size doesn't fit all; one size fits one. If you don't have this hard data, you're involved in a "street fight" with every internal group when you program new space, and the company ends up with a larger space and higher expenses than are necessary. Our ratio of individual offices to collaborative space, 70 to 30 five years ago, is now the exact opposite, thanks in large part to analytics. 18 MARCH 2018 t H e le A de R

Articles in this issue

Archives of this issue

view archives of The Leader Magazine - MAR 2018