How Coffee Will Make You Rethink Retail Risk Management

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For a while, shortly before I started working in commercial real estate technology, I brewed a lot.

That is not a typo, though I understand the assumption that I might have “brood” before I started working in the exciting, ever changing CRE Tech space. No, prior to that, I worked as a manager for a certain Washington-based retail coffeehouse that no doubt many of you are very familiar with.

In that role I learned a lot about the daily grind for the shop, which included something previously unknown to me, called risk management. Yes, that risk management. The same risk management that is critical to office, industrial, medical, and retail commercial real estate property operations the world over.

And yes, the risk management practices many retail tenants (like the coffee shop I worked at) utilize are incredibly similar to that of their retail property management teams. Their focus is on:

  • Vendor management
  • Damage / loss prevention
  • Preventive maintenance
  • Customer safety
  • Customer satisfaction

Sound familiar? These are many of the same elements that property owners and managers look to incorporate into their own practices to mitigate risk exposure, and loss.

In fact, the similarities don’t end there. Many of the process problems – or hurdles – that retail tenants face while attempting to mitigate risk are the same as well, including:

  • Not having a central location for keeping track of vendors
  • Being unable to easily share basic tenant information, including: lease, contract, and equipment details
  • Lacking digital storage for historical documentation, including: previous work orders, incidents, contracts, and payments
  • Inability to immediately communicate to all appropriate parties in the event that an incident occurs
  • Struggling to stay on top of equipment maintenance and inspections (espresso machines break incredibly easily!)

This doesn’t even include the ever-growing importance of measuring tenant satisfaction – or in the case of retail tenants, customer satisfaction – for mitigating organizational risk.

So what,” you might be saying. Yeah, alright, I get it – you already knew the things your retail tenants deal with are similar. Fair enough.

But did you know that there is a web and mobile property management software tool available to help you manage risk in your retail properties, and improve your tenant satisfaction using one login?

I bet that made your ears perk up. If so, I welcome you to check out our platform. Speaking from personal experience, I wish that we had digital tools like this back in the coffee shop. And with tools like our tenant portal, and TenHub mobile tenant app, they can!