Holly Hindmarsh

Occupancy Planning Services Manager


What’s your educational background?

I started my educational journey with a dream to be a residential architect. After high school, I quickly found myself at a university 3000 miles from home in a program I did not enjoy. I left after the first year and wrapped up an AA at a local college in technology education – hoping instead to take my love of drafting and architecture and use it to teach instead of practice. In time, I found myself still missing the world of drafting, architecture, and engineering so I decided to go back to school and finished a degree in Architectural Drafting and Design. That lead me to the company I am with today, Buildingi. After a few more years, and a thirst for more knowledge, I backed up those degrees with a degree in Business Management.

Tell us about your career path. Where were you prior to joining Buildingi?

Prior to Buildingi, I was a struggling 20-something working full time as a claims processor in the healthcare industry while going to school full time. I knew that one day I would get back into the design and construction world, I was just taking a different route than I originally planned. I knew my prior role was only a stepping stone for me, but it gave me the flexibility I needed to finish my degree and find my next role. Unfortunately, about the time I finished my degree is when the US market crashed and not many places were willing to give me a shot with no direct experience. That’s when I got the call from Buildingi to work with their drawing records management practice for a large client. I figured this was the opportunity for me to get a year or two of working experience needed to get into the residential field. It was about 6 months later that I realized I had found my place. When started I was completely oblivious to the world of facilities management and corporate real estate, it opened my eyes to a new world of leveraging the same skills I already had. I saw the need for planning and tools in the corporate world, I was intrigued. It took my love of technology and love of drafting by combining them into one ideal role. I quickly dove into learning as much as I could about the IWMS systems we used, how they help organizations plan and manage their space, and continued to ask questions to grow my knowledge

Please share some details about your current position. What are some of the interesting things you’re working on?

As an Occupancy Planner and Technology Consultant, I am at a unique intersection in the workplace world. I support clients by providing tactical and strategic planning support, but also help them find the technology that supports their initiatives both near and long term.

Currently I am working on a few fun projects including developing best practices and drawing standards for a global company looking to track their floor plans, working with a global company to define and develop their agile seating processes and policies, supporting an IWMS system implementation for a local healthcare company and guiding my internal team by staying on top of the latest workplace trends and technology that impacts our current, and new, clients.

Is there a single project or accomplishment that was particularly rewarding?

My most rewarding project so far was for a local client. They were under a tight deadline to execute on a project that had been in planning for months. The project consisted of moving 3500+ people in a 12-week period, while simultaneously densifying and installing new furniture across 20 floors dispersed throughout multiple campus buildings. The internal Occupancy Planner left before programming of the project could be completed. When I inherited the project, there was less than 6 weeks until the first moves were intended to begin. I evaluated the work plan and recognized an opportunity to consolidate many teams that were in various buildings, but it was a complete deviation from the original plan.  While the original plan was viable, it did not resolve operational issues that were inherently being carried forward in their plan. I was able to quickly establish confidence with the client, generate an entirely new plan and obtain stakeholder support. The benefits of adopting my proposed solution solved for adjacency requirements and allocated teams to the correct buildings within the campus, in alignment with required amenities.  With only a few weeks before the first move, it seemed impossible to meet the predefined move dates, but I quickly created an adjusted schedule that met the dates AND remained within budget. Upon completion, the client was thrilled to have an outcome that resulted in a well-planned space that was operationally sound, allowing for greater efficiencies and productivity.

How long have you been a member of CoreNet Global? Tell us about your involvement and how you engage with the association.

I’ve been a member of CoreNet Global since 2016. I had attended lunch events through my company sporadically for about 2 years prior to that and made some great connections with people in different parts of the profession. Right after I signed up as a member on my own, I was asked to participate in my first panel on Young Leaders in the profession. That spearheaded my involvement and I became part of the [local chapter] Education Programs committee later that month. Since then, I’ve led two highly successful lunch events, reignited our chapter’s Young Leader committee by taking on the Committee Chair role, and have continued to try to add value and education to our membership through engaging and relevant topics. Additionally, I have attended 2 summits now, presenting as a speaker at the most recent one (Boston 2018).

What aspects of your involvement with CoreNet Global are most valuable? Please comment on the value that Young Leaders get from membership in the association.

Connecting with other leaders in my local area is probably the most valuable piece to me. Our local chapter is very diverse in membership from different areas of corporate real estate. As a Young Leader, it’s nice to be able to have conversations with these folks about what they’ve learned in their journeys, how they’ve succeeded, the trends they’ve seen come and go, and how to think differently about changes that could come in the near future. Additionally, being able to gather with other Young Leaders and talk not just about corporate real estate, but how we can collectively work together to develop our networking skills, our brand, and our stories – its helping to distinguish ourselves in this industry and in our area.

How do you see your future career? Will it be in corporate real estate?

I continue to see my future in corporate real estate for many more years. With a unique cross section of skills with Occupancy Planning and Technology Consulting, I only see the need for these skills expanding as the trends in workplace planning expand. With this in mind I also still hold teaching near to my heart and hope that one day, I can transfer my knowledge to others currently in the field and teach future generations how to navigate this world.

To help our readers get to know you on a more personal level, tell us a little about yourself (e.g., family, hobbies, favorite places to visit, etc.).

I am married to a man I lovingly refer to as Caveman. We have 2 dogs and enjoy taking small road trips to areas around the Pacific Northwest. I am an avid baker and specialize in cupcakes, particularly the booze-filled variety. You can typically find me doing one of a few things in my spare time: building Legos, playing video games, or reading comics (Batman is best!) I host a semi-regular game night at my house that involves both video games and board games. It’s a great way for my friends and I to let loose and have fun after long work weeks.