6 March 2019

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What Is My Building's Wired Score?

Fiber Connectivity by Tom Collins

Do you get faster Internet speed at home than you do at the office? Does your office building have a gym, a great carryout, ample parking but only cable company Internet access available?

Most office buildings were built before the internet became an indispensable part of any business. We hear from customers who suffer at buildings that may not have what is needed to provide a business with fast and reliable digital connectivity. Some buildings have upgraded their tech to today's standards, and others haven't. It's hard to tell until you get moved in and start relying on the building's connectivity choices.

To give tenants visibility into this aspect of building amenities, WiredScore worked in cooperation with New York City in 2013 to set up a tiered certification and rating system fo building connectivity. After success of their rollout in the Big Apple, they've moved service availability to other metropolitan areas, including the DMV metro region. Commercial building landlords can now take a proactive approach to maximize digital infrastructure, get certified, and promote that certification.

We'll show you how WiredScore evaluates buildings and how you can work with your landlord to improve digital infrastructure.

Understanding My Building's Wired Score

WiredScore has grown rapidly from the start thanks to their straightforward certification process and ratings and the demand for this information from commercial tenants.

Fiber-optic business internet service has been found to significantly increase commercial real estate value and is arguably just as important as location is as an assessment factor for where to set up shop.

Washington, D.C. (our local market) currently has 116 Wired Certified commercial buildings—3 Certified, 48 Silver, 54 Gold, 11 Platinum.

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Wired Certification Levels

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Wired Certified Platinum means a building is best in class across all features of connectivity that matter most to tenants: number and quality of internet service providers, redundancy and resiliency of telecom infrastructure, ease of installation and capacity to readily support new telecom services. The building can support current and future tenants with the most stringent technology requirements.

Atlantech_wired-score-goldWired Certified Gold means a building provides tenants with access to multiple high-quality internet service providers and a variety of cabling types including fiber. The infrastructure measures in place ensure connectivity sources are protected, redundant, and prepared for connectivity needs of future tenants as well.

Atlantech_wired-score-silveWired Certified Silver guarantees that fiber connectivity is available in the building as well as choice of internet service providers to support diverse connections. Infrastructure in place will ensure connectivity is protected and secure. The building can deliver the connectivity needed for today’s tenants.

Atlantech_wired-score-certiWired Certified means that measures have been taken to reduce the risk of connectivity loss and interruption. The building can support current tenant connectivity needs with confidence.

 

How Buildings Are Measured

Building owners initiate the certification process by filling out a form on WiredScore's website. After an on-site visit by a local professional, the WiredScore team evaluates and grades the building's tech infrastructure. The process normally takes 45 to 60 days from start to finish.

WiredScore looks at five areas of digital connectivity:

  1. Tenant Experience. Does the building provide tenants with a seamless digital connectivity experience?
  2. Reliability. Are potential outages mitigated through thoughtfully-considered infrastructure planning?
  3. Power of Choice. Do multiple high-speed fiber providers service the building and provide competitive pricing?
  4. Future-Readiness. Is there flexibility and capacity to adapt to new technology?
  5. Security. Is critical equipment protected from accidental or environmental disruption?

Why We're Behind WiredScore

As a premier telecommunications provider in Washington, D.C. and the surrounding areas, we know the value of proactive and responsible building management in regards to digital connectivity. We've worked with some great building owners and some who are not as innovative in their thinking or in touch with the needs of their tenants when it comes to connectivity.

The success of our clients' businesses partly hinges on their ability to get work done through the Internet. If we're fighting an infrastructure battle from Day 1, our clients are not going to get the service they need to move to or stay at the top of their respective markets.

WiredScore's tiered certification sets a high bar for commercial landlords and business tenants benefit. This kind of transparency creates accountability and elevates the quality of building infrastructure that we work with on a daily basis. A strong regional infrastructure strengthens the business climate in the D.C. area and when that happens everyone wins, including commercial landlords.

We believe WiredScore is looking at the right aspects when they assess building connectivity. In particular, we're glad to see "Power of Choice" included in the criteria. One disturbing trend we've seen recently is the use of building riser management companies. Commercial landlords are, understandably, concerned with the state of their building's risers. Many risers contain old, unused cabling and some are just a mess. So they lean on a riser management company to ensure that their building's central cabling is in good shape.

The problem with riser management companies is that they create a telecommunications monopoly in the building. Monopolies tend to lower the quality of service while simultaneously increasing the price. Building riser management companies charge as much as 10 times more than a competitive local telecommunications provider would to manage and maintain risers. There are better riser management options for commercial building owners. When riser management companies are used, the tenants end up paying way too much for unreliable service.

Bravo, WiredScore for looking out for the tenants by incorporating power of choice in your certification.

Related Reading: How a Riser Management Company Might Hurt Commercial Landlords

How To Find Your Building's Wired Score

WiredScore currently has ratings for buildings in the US, France, UK and Ireland, Germany, and Canada. To see if your building has been certified, simply click Find Buildings, select your country, then search by city or address.

If you're looking for a location with a high score as a possible location for your business, you can filter the results by certification level (Platinum, Gold, Silver, Certified, or Self Reported). The building finder interface has a helpful neighborhood filter and a map with pins on certified buildings. Each certified building has a freely accessible PDF with details and key features of connectivity.

Atlantech_wired-score-2

Talking to Your Landlord About Improvements

If you're concerned that your current building management isn't prioritizing digital infrastructure, we encourage you to have a conversation. If your building isn't Wired Certified, bring this to their attention. By getting the highest certification possible, the landlord will have a more marketable property and be able to attract and keep great business tenants.

If your landlord doesn't bite on WiredScore, point to the infrastructure attributes that they evaluate. Ideally, a building that has proximity to high-quality Internet connectivity would have multiple fiber provider choices, diverse entries into the property, power back up for the telecom carriers in the building in case of power failure, and ease of access and provisioning of service.

If you're looking for a fiber provider for your business, read our helpful 10 Questions To Ask Before You Buy Fiber Connectivity For Your Business. In this guide, we give you the 10 questions you need to ask before buying and the reasons why they are important.





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About the author:

Tom Collins (Twitter, LinkedIn) - is the Director of Enterprise Sales & Marketing for Atlantech Online. He has over 20 years of professional experience in the Internet Service Provider industry and is known for translating technology into positive results for business. A native of Washington, DC, a graduate from University of Maryland (degrees in Government & Politics and Secondary Education), Tom is also a five-time Ironman finisher.

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