Case Studies

Ryan Martin – CoreLogic

Setting his sights on CoreLogic’s site-optimization

Jetlagged but jovial, Ryan Martin recently returned to his employer’s Dallas office after a trip to India that had him overseeing preparations for a software development hub in Calcutta and visiting an outsourcing partner in Bangalore.

“My farthest project,” he says of the planned 12,000-square-foot facility on the other side of the world. Minding that detail has been among Martin’s latest responsibilities as the man in charge of CoreLogic’s real estate and facilities management since July 2021.

Not that he’s had to go abroad to keep busy. The past two-and-a-half years have been eventful and dynamic at this global property information and analytics company and its clientele in real estate, finance, insurance and government.

While there had been a decade-long, incremental transition to remote or hybrid work at CoreLogic, the COVID-19 pandemic sped it up with excess space in office complexes once teeming with people. So how is Martin faring as he helps his employer, with its real estate holdings, adjust to the new norm?

“I’m having a ball doing what I’m doing,” he tells Blueprint in November. “Seeing CoreLogic through the future of its work and evolving and growing with the company is something I’m really enjoying.”

Efficiency starts at home

CoreLogic is counted upon to provide financial, property, consumer information, analytics and business intelligence to big-ticket clientele. Martin is well-positioned to assist the company in doing just that by ensuring it makes the best use of its own facilities and keeps its employees at the center of everything.

For Martin, that’s meant consolidating what had been CoreLogic’s dozens of coast-to-coast offices and affording workers the flexibility to function hybrid-style or remotely. Since Martin joined the firm, he says CoreLogic has gone from 33 to 11 North American locations but with no compromise to customer service.

“Now that not everyone comes to the office, we don’t need a one-to-one seat-to-butt ratio,” he explains. “Before, when we were considering closing an office, the philosophy was if your office were closing, you would have to move to another office. The stars aligned in late 2021 for us to undertake this reduction of office space, and now they (employees) can work from home or at a co-working office. It’s been successful and has saved us in overhead.”

The Dallas office, CoreLogic’s biggest with around 330,000 square feet, plans to sublet 80,000 square feet on the third floor, and Martin reckons it to be a welcome haven for so many other companies shedding physical space. While it’s the biggest leverage of cost-containment that Martin and his 16-member team spearhead, he’s just as proud of the consolidations he’s overseen in Fort Lauderdale, Florida; Oxford, Mississippi; Rochester, New York; and Montreal, Quebec.

“At some of the offices, you could have played cricket on a Friday and not hit anybody,” he muses. “If we aren’t utilizing or being efficient with our space, it’s my responsibility to find a way to change that.”

Kodak moment in Rochester

He’s helping optimize the new Rochester location while collaborating with CoreLogic’s landlord, who bought the former Eastman Kodak campus that once was the region’s economic engine. While Martin initially was skeptical about consolidation in this snowy city on the shores of Lake Ontario, he says the workforce should enjoy the new digs and its amenities.

“After work, rent a canoe and enjoy the (Genesee) river,” he says.

Meanwhile, in Mississippi, CoreLogic has made the most of the 60,000-square-foot facility it bought from appraisal software specialist FNC Inc., in 2015. CoreLogic, having partnered with the University of Mississippi and other regional schools, has a parade of young software engineers starting their careers at the firm.

As to what the new year will bring, Martin says by keeping his ear to the ground, he notes a palpable sense of fear from those immersed in corporate real estate. Office brokers aren’t leasing, tenants are looking for ways out, the mortgage market seems at an all-time worst, and he even knows of a landlord who’s tried to lease property for free just to comply with a loan covenant.

Ever upbeat

But Martin won’t be distressed. He’s keeping busy with his own responsibilities, divided between real estate consolidation and facilities maintenance and how the two intersect. The firm has enjoyed much organic growth since its 2010 spinoff from The First American Corp., and it’s also bought and sold other companies.

So, Martin’s the go-to for optimization on these fronts. It’s a role he relishes, albeit one he fell into as a young man honing his skills in aeronautical supply chains.

A 2001 business school graduate of Wichita State University, Martin scored positions at Bombardier Aerospace, Thayer Aerospace Manufacturing, Cessna Aircraft Co., and Bell Helicopter. He got an early taste of real estate and facilities management at Cessna, where he bought janitorial and cafeteria services and supplies in addition to managing infotech contracting.

He took that to a higher level as a procurement operations supervisor at Bell, outsourcing janitorial and saving the company millions of dollars. Following a return to Cessna, Martin returned to Bell for another seven-and-a-half years, where duties included overseeing the construction of six offices. That prepared him well for the more far-reaching role at CoreLogic.

“I couldn’t be happier where my career has taken me,” he says. “I didn’t get to go to India when I was in supply chain.”

He’ll be there again before too long, his current position being all-encompassing, and the India software development center will surely boost the firm’s global presence once active. He also loves travel, though he says being airborne for 12 hours can make one appreciate being back on the ground. And that, of course, is where he makes his livelihood.

“Soup to nuts, stem to stern,” he says about his role.

The buck stops with him for overhead, capital expenses, staffing and performance for projects on any terra firma. As CoreLogic’s only real estate professional, all property transactions and leasing go through him.

He’s back in Texas now, home for the time being with his wife and three children. On Sundays, he’s cheering for the Kansas City Chiefs, a team that began as the Dallas Texans in the former American Football League. A facilities issue factored in their rebranding and relocating—the NFL’s Cowboys ending the Texans’ exclusive use of the old Cotton Bowl.

Martin wasn’t around back then, but probably would have understood. Any company, be it the Chiefs or CoreLogic, must adjust to changing times and sometimes on the fly. As of November, both were riding high.

“Under our old way of thinking, you weren’t allowed to go remote without jumping through hoops,” he says. “It’s been a win-win since.”

View this feature in the Blueprint Vol. I 2024 Edition here.

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