The Brief

GPE (formerly Great Portland Estates) wish to understand the needs of their customers and have been using RealService research and insight to inform their business strategy in this regard since 2017. The research was initially biennially but is now carried out annually.

In 2020-21 the brief also incorporated research studies around Return to Work so the business was kept abreast of occupier needs and priorities throughout the Covid-19 pandemic and had information which could be used to help plan for the future use of office space.


Our Approach

GPE identify around 100 customers they wish to be interviewed by phone or Zoom. These interviews are carried out by the RealService in-house research team. Any remaining occupiers are contacted by email.

The questionnaire is agreed between GPE and RealService. It includes several ‘core’ questions which contribute to benchmarking – GPE can now compare their own performance year on year, and also see how they rank compared to their peers on the RealService CX Index.

The interviews generate high-quality quantitative and qualitative feedback from which GPE develop action plans to address any new priorities or areas requiring improvement.


The Impact

The feedback from the RealService surveys is not just important, it’s crucial, critical, because without knowing what it is we could improve upon we could be one of those landlords who assume they know what people want and give it to them without asking, consulting or debating.

The feedback loop is essential and it’s one of the reasons we moved our survey from a biennial event to an annual one. Two years is too long to go without talking with your customers.

To the question, what do we do with that research, the answer is we create action plans from the feedback. We enjoy hearing the good things that are said but concentrate our focus on the things we can improve.”

David O’Sullivan, Director of Occupier and Property Services at GPE

Claire Middleton

Claire came to RealService with a background in sports journalism and lecturing. A sportswriter for the Daily Telegraph she covered the Olympic Games in Sydney and Beijing as well as many other major global events. After moving to Australia, she lectured on a Sport Diploma course and became a media law tutor at Curtin University in Perth. Now back in the UK, she aids the RealService directors around business development, marketing and communications.

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