Based on what we see in the market, commercial real estate hiring seems to be steady. Despite the doom and gloom in the news headlines, Poline Search Partners has not experienced a slowdown in 2023. We have, however, seen a trend with jobs seemingly being reallocated.
In the last six months, we’ve not picked up as many assignments in acquisitions, development and construction as many of our clients await a better interest rate and supply chain environment in which to construct their planned projects.
And in lieu of hiring in those areas, we’ve instead seen a bump in companies making strategic hires to maximize income produced by their existing portfolios. This has equated to upgrading property and asset management staff as well as sharpening leasing teams.
- Property managers ensure expenses are in line, maintenance agreements are solid, systems run smoothly, and capital improvement projects are initiated in a strategic manner. Property managers must be savvy—especially during shopping center renovations—to minimize customer impact, mitigate retailer sales disruptions, bid out projects competitively, and manage tactical timing. These “boots on the ground” jobs are in high demand.
- Asset managers assess the overall financial health of an asset in terms of value creation from both revenue and expense sides. They’re often the numbers gurus, taking Excel spreadsheets and translating the data into action items for property managers, leasing teams and even development personnel to execute. Asset managers are known to take a holistic look at a given property as they work to maximize net operating income (NOI).
- Leasing teams focus on creating value through revenue generation. They improve shopping centers by curating the best tenant mix possible and securing retailers who can best fulfill the strategic merchandising plan of a given asset. Leasing and property management teams work together to improve the asset to generate repeat visitors and optimize sales. The leasing sector is very competitive right now particularly given the low vacancy rates at most open-air centers.
So, why are property managers, asset managers and brokers in demand now while other job types are not?
In this climate, the name of the game is positioning. It is critical to position a real estate asset to withstand both today’s current high interest rate environment as well as what’s coming down the road when properties may again start to trade at a stronger clip.