About the client
The client is a Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT) headquartered in New York and North America’s most prominent publicly-traded owner and operator of open-air, grocery-anchored shopping centers. Primarily concentrated in first-ring suburbs of major metropolitan markets, the client is gradually growing their portfolio of mixed-use assets. Founded in 1958, they are rapidly expanding to Sun Belt cities, with an increased focus on essential and necessity-based goods and services. Included in S&P 500 Index, the organization specializes in shopping center ownership, management acquisition, and redevelopment activities for over six decades.
The client aspired to optimize rental yield and increase their Annual Base Rent (ABR) from their mixed-used portfolio 13% to 15% and grow their ABR from their grocery-anchored portfolio from 81% to 85% Furthermore, they targeted a +40% growth in their multi-family residential unit portfolio from 8,700 to 12,000 units.
The client already had a comprehensive technology platform for the end-to-end management of their property, investments, and accounting requirements. Moreover, with interests in more than 500 US shopping centers and mixed-use assets comprising close to 90 million square feet of leasable space, the goal was to leverage the platform:
Up-to-date and accurate centralized repository of all lease information
Make informed and data-driven strategic decisions
The existing solution was built on a legacy application and required considerable manual intervention.
The client had a team to extract and analyze thousands of reports at the pre-decided timelines. The highly manual and somewhat disconnected process was error-prone and had a high turnaround, affecting their ability to focus on more strategic opportunities. Being a forward-thinking organization, the client realized the need to re-imagine their core operations, to enable agility, accuracy, and efficiency.
To automate quickly, securely, and efficiently as well as to enhance workflows, the client looked to develop an automation solution that had the following capabilities:
The client invested in an advanced Robotic Process Automation (RPA) solution to modernize and augment their capabilities. The client partnered with Trigent to develop a solution assimilating Digital Process Automation (DPA) with RPA. Trigent’s seasoned experts expeditiously participated in a rigorous knowledge transfer, evaluating and anticipating the risks and building an intelligent solution apt to the client’s needs.
Leveraging Microsoft Power Automate, the team developed an intelligent automation solution on the Windows Operating system (OS) framework. The team reverse-engineered and enhanced the existing processes using modern automation techniques, scaling up the process functionalities. Visual Basic Analysis (VBA) was leveraged to write the program for the framework.
The RPA-led low-code solution was integrated with the client’s account in the MRI real estate software. Moreover, while scheduling the RPA processes, the team enabled bot execution, thus making the entire process independent. The bots operated on a preset schedule.
The team built seventy-five automation bots to run in the production system and allocated multiple user accounts. These seventy-five bots parallelly processed close to 100 reports (per bot) which included more than 100 files. This enabled the client to generate and process thousands of relevant MRI reports during the given timeframe.
Furthermore, to simplify and expedite the entity distribution process, e-mail and file triggers were built for the in-depth analysis and breakdown of specific records. On receiving a trigger, a bot would further process the records with regard to a pre-defined template mapping and creation of an Excel file. After processing a record, the bots would make journal entries to MRI software, and an automated mail would reach the respective approver of the records. The RPA solution enabled the client to resolve more than 15 records (each record including more than 100 elements) daily.