Looking Ahead: The Problem with Transient Data

The commercial property your team recently purchased went through a fairly lengthy due diligence process. But after tough negotiations with the seller and a detailed financial and operational assessment of the building, you were confident your organization has just added a winner to the portfolio. However, what appeared to be a sound capital strategy and asset management program began to show its weakness just a few months later. This is the problem with transient data.

When operations records are sparse and inconsistent, your property management teams must spend vast resources collecting old information to justify future maintenance plans. Accounting teams must review static spreadsheets to understand historic capital allocation. Static information, silos of unstructured data and paper records dominate these processes, draining staff resources and time.

What is transient data?

While “transient” data—information that does not get passed on after its life-cycle—persists in the technology world, it is increasingly becoming a topic of discussion in real-estate asset management as well. More often than not, information that is collected about a building—operational and capital history, leasing and financial records, maintenance, etc.—is not easily transferred between parties when the asset is sold. As such, new acquisitions often require vast internal resources to on-board the asset and bring it up to speed in terms of client reporting standards or asset management operations for the new owner.

What’s the solution?

Asset-centric data centralization is one emerging solution: by having a central data repository in place throughout a building’s life-cycle, critical aspects of a building’s infrastructure, systems, assets, operations and financial information are stored in an easily accessible place and adaptable format—new and existing data is thus constantly available for strategic planning, decision-making, capital investment strategies and project development. All stakeholders now share asset-centric data creating a hyper-collaborative environment that keeps the knowledge base fresh, current and accurate throughout the life-cycle of the asset. Accordingly, the due diligence and research process for future property dispositions take much less time and provide inherent value in the transaction process.

Additionally, as the pressure of sustainability reporting and environmental compliance increases for the real estate industry, data on energy consumption, environmental impact, emission control and building operating performance can be tracked, monitored and verified at a greater level of detail on a real-time basis.