Offices all over the world are currently shuttered due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This results in various challenges for corporate real estate and facilities managers, ranging from how to maintain an unused office space to monitoring the number of people still working from the office. Zurich Insurance developed its own strategy to master this situation by using the relevant data provided by Locatee.
The insurance company has rolled out Locatee in multiple buildings throughout Switzerland in the Workplace Operations Plan. In their headquarters in Zurich, Locatee is being used to monitor the office building utilisation for strategic and operational real estate decisions.
- During the COVID-19 pandemic, Locatee‘s data is used to monitor the daily peak utilization.
- Daily reports are created for the management to verify the maximum number of people located in the office.
- Measures were taken to reduce the occupancy in zones with too high a utilization.
- For the top management it is of great importance to have reliable insights during the crisis.
- The existing Cisco LAN & WiFI infrastructure allowed to measure workspace utilization in real-time, without additional hardware.
At their headquarters in Zurich, people in charge of business-critical tasks or events are currently still working from the office, while everyone else is urged to work from home. In order to be able to comply with government policy and to protect their employees, the management team at Zurich Insurance requests daily reports with key data points and indicators, such as the overall peak utilization of a building as well as that of different zones. Patrick Preisendanz, CAFM Specialist at Zurich Insurance Switzerland, prepares those reports and monitors all relevant data.
Timeline View with Daily Peaks
A color system to visualize office occupancy
The workplace utilization data provided by Locatee, based on Cisco’s IT Infrastructure, enables Patrick Preisendanz’s access to the required insights. Using the Timeline View of Locatee Analytics, he is able to oversee all floors and zones in order to monitor the daily peak utilization and to identify the time at which they occur. A color system has been introduced to visualize which areas are approved, critical or even over-utilized. Through the allocated home bases of the departments, all areas with a too much utilization could be approached and consequently the daily peaks successfully decreased. The peak utilization has now stabilized at a value of around 4%.
As the utilisation has reached its target value, Zurich Insurance is now able to start improving operational efficiency and use the data to select areas where office resources can be reduced and unused devices such as coffee machines can be shut down.
The value of peak utilization
While normally the insights into average utilization are used for strategic decisions at Zurich Insurance, now the peak utilization is providing the relevant data. After a short period of adjusting to these new circumstances, an immediate collaboration and regular exchange
between Zurich Insurance and Locatee made it possible to regain control over this exceptional situation.
„Locatee data took a lot of importance during the last weeks and was needed in order to implement the necessary measures taken by the management.”
Already anticipating the return of employees to the office, Patrick Preisendanz also plans to use Locatee’s data to monitor this future process with the same color system – this time in reverse. Most probably, there will be different stages of the number of people allowed to go back to office work, including staggered office hours. Monitoring this successive process will be key for a successful return to business as usual.