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Turning disruption into opportunity: Leading corporate real estate in a post-COVID-19 world
As we emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic, corporate real estate (CRE) teams will be challenged with helping to define the new ‘workplace’ for now and into the future. Evolving the CRE operating model will be fundamental in supporting the transformation of the workplace, while driving the need for better partnerships and support models for business unit engagement. Building the enhanced employee experience will rely on the successful integration of CRE, human resources (HR), technology and risk in formulating engaging workplaces that enable employees to adapt and thrive within various environments. This paper will show how RBC’s CRE team is turning the disruption of the pandemic into an opportunity to evolve the workplace through increased flexibility, technology, innovation, collaboration, and through the vehicles of employee experience and space-as-a-service.
The full article is available to institutions that have subscribed to the journal.
Lisa M. Chan is Royal Bank of Canada (RBC)’s Vice President, Global Portfolio and Head of Canada and the Caribbean, responsible for delivering innovative portfolio management solutions for RBC’s core business, which serves 17m clients in Canada, the US and 27 other countries through its 88,000 dedicated employees. Lisa helps to enable RBC’s global footprint of 2,300 locations and 24m sq. ft at an annual cost of CAD$1.7bn. Lisa first joined RBC’s corporate real estate team in 2013 and has held several different roles including portfolio strategy and transactions, design and relationship management. Currently, Lisa is a member of the Enterprise Crisis Management team, enabling RBC’s response to COVID-19 through incident management and integrated re-entry planning. With a passion for providing mentorship opportunities and giving back to the community, Lisa has been an acting member of the RBC CAO/CFO Advancing Women in Leadership Committee, co-led RBC’s CAO Employee Giving Campaign in support of United Way and chaired RBC’s Race for the Kids Real Estate Challenge. Lisa has more than 20 years’ real estate experience and has worked at some of Canada’s largest corporations including Rogers Communications, BMO Financial Group, CIBC and Canadian Tire. She holds an MBA from the Schulich School of Business, a BAA from Ryerson University in applied geography and a Masters of Corporate Real Estate (MCR) from CoreNet Global.
Scott P. Foster is Royal Bank of Canada (RBC)’s Senior Vice President (SVP), Global Head of Corporate Real Estate (CRE), and responsible for delivering innovative and cost-effective real estate solutions for RBC’s core business, which serves 17m clients in Canada, the US and 27 other countries through its 88,000 dedicated employees. Scott provides leadership to the real estate function that manages RBC’s global footprint of 2,300 locations and 24m sq. ft. at an annual cost of CAD$1.7bn. Currently, Scott is a member of the Enterprise Crisis Management team, enabling RBC’s response to COVID-19 through incident management and re-entry planning. He also is working with HR, strategy and technology to develop and launch a global RBC flexible work programme. Prior to his current role at RBC, Scott was the chief operating officer at Nelson Worldwide, where he was responsible for the overall performance and operations of an integrated services company focused on planning, architecture, interior design, branding and workplace services. Before Nelson, Scott was SVP, Global Corporate Services at Bank of America, and held numerous other roles at organisations such as Booz Allen Hamilton, where he spent ten years focused on organisational management consulting and post-merger integration. Scott graduated from Texas A&M with a Bachelor of Environmental Design and received his MBA, Master of Architecture with Honors from Washington University. In addition to sitting on the Corporate Real Estate Leadership Council, Scott holds a Master of Corporate Real Estate (MCR) certification from CoreNet Global and serves as lead faculty for the MCR designation programme.