How commercial real estate offers a vision of workplace environments

Today's workplaces have placed a greater emphasis on visibility into both commercial real estate spaces and the corporate office spaces that fill them.

It’s no secret, we spend a significant portion of our lives at work; around 1/3 of our lives in fact. As a result, the workplace environment can be as consequential as the home. Companies spend a lot of time (perhaps today more than ever) choosing the right space for their employees in building their desired company culture. For commercial real estate agents, this is something to keep in mind when marketing spaces and attracting clients. Over the years, office spaces have changed to match these changing aspects of desired workplace environments. Recently, there has been an emphasis on friendly, colorful and open office spaces; showing that off is viewed as a major recruiting tool for top talent.

Understanding trends in workplace environments

More and more companies are making it a priority that their workplace be a pleasant and user-friendly environment. Supporting the lifestyles and wellness of employees, companies hope to encourage a welcoming, positive workplace where employees enjoy coming to work, particularly in an era where work is increasingly done in the digital world. Organizations like WeWork have understood this and made their co-working spaces as attractive as they are pleasant. 

Office rentals continue to be a growing market and they present an excellent opportunity for photographers and commercial real estate agents to take advantage. With spaces more frequently in flux and in need of quality, comprehensive views, how do you best photograph these spaces?

[Navigate Matterport's Chicago office space for yourself.]

Create a complete and versatile look at the workplace

Offices tend to be large spaces and it’s important to be able to highlight each’s versatility. This means not only showing meeting rooms but also the entire common areas, including rec rooms, kitchens and so on. They all contribute to the full vision of what a client is looking for in a fit for their company. Each area is another piece of the office space value a company will look to offer in recruiting and retaining top talent.

Commercial real estate photography with personality

There are a number of ways to create differentiation and add personality to these spaces where those qualities can be lacking. One consideration is whether to feature people or not. For example, you can have someone cross between two meeting rooms to help clients envision activity in their prospective space and add scale. With a shutter speed slower than that of the interior, the person appears blurred and gives movement to the photo. In order to get the person in the right place and with the right posture, it’s recommended to take various shots. Similarly, if you choose to add people to your photos, put them interact; for example, in a meeting room, create a natural setting where they work together with a computer or mobile phone etc. The idea is to make the scene as authentic as possible. This helps bring that personality to the workspace without taking away from the primary purpose of showcasing the office. 

Take advantage of commercial real estate technology

As a company researches commercial real estate office spaces, their impression will largely be guided by what they find online. This online view of a potential office space is essential to establishing differentiation in the eyes of clients as they look to differentiate their workplace to employees. In addition to traditional 2D photography, technology has created opportunities to provide more complete and interactive visuals to clients. How? Technologies such as social media, video and navigable 3D walkthroughs have changed the way commercial real estate listings are found and marketed. Utilizing digital tools designed for generating engagement in the digital age broadens client reach and builds your (and your client’s) brand.

Be mindful of displays

If the office space you need to shoot includes displays, make sure most of them are not turned off. The example above offers a look at the result when this advice isn't followed. Keep in mind to feature displays without showing any confidential information, graphics or images related to business activity. The same goes for computer screens or whiteboards. Again, almost any area could be suited for featuring people in the shot, showing a vibrant and active office environment.

Detail brings in deals from a distance

Investing in an office space is a big deal for companies of all sizes. A good deal of time, move management strategy, effort and of course, money, are all expended on the decision to move or add a corporate office. With so many important office space considerations, the more detail you’re able to provide the more confident a client can be in your commercial real estate listing being their company’s next workplace.  

Speaking of confidence, it’s said that seeing is believing and commercial real estate is no different. Making the physical trip to visit prospective locations can be among the most time-consuming steps of the office space search. This is especially true of expanding companies who have individuals needing to travel long distances or smaller companies with more limited time and resources. Providing those details and being transparent will help streamline that process and give confidence to clients. The aforementioned navigable 3D experiences put a complete and comprehensive view of your listing directly in front of clients and adds confidence to their interest.

Simplicity of 3D spaces

Complete transparency isn’t complicated. 3D reality capture is about as simple as a traditional photography shoot. The camera is placed at strategic vantage points to capture every nook and cranny for an immersive viewing experience. What’s captured is then automatically turned into the model you view, compliments of an AI-powered software that essentially eliminates post-production work. With Matterport, ultra-realistic and fluid interactive virtual tours as well as printable 2D photos for your customers all can come from a single shoot, simplifying your clients’ search process and validating their interest.

Interested in giving clients or employees a unique and innovative look at what your office space has to offer? Contact an expert today to learn more about all the options for bringing your brand 3D differentiation.


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