New “Customize Peer Group” functionality available

From August, GRESB real estate participants will have access to a new “Customize Peer Group” functionality in the GRESB Portal.

This new feature is currently available in test phase and is being developed in response to industry feedback. It allows participants to either confirm their predefined peer group, as allocated by GRESB, or submit edits to the peer grouping criteria.

Because this functionality is still being developed, your updated peer group selection will not appear in your 2023 Benchmark Report. However, your input will allow us to build the functionality in a way that accounts for as many real-life use cases as possible.

In October, as a gesture of appreciation for your input, you will be able to access your ranking against your Customized Peer Group in the GRESB Portal. The ranking will only be visible to you, but participants can choose to share their ranking with their investors offline should they wish to do so. For any public communication this year, we recommend that participants use their official peer group designation found on their benchmark reports.

For those wanting to explore and provide input on the development of the “Customize Peer Group” functionality this year, the process takes less than five minutes to complete and comprises a few simple steps listed in the section below.

As we are continuing to refine this feature, participants can provide GRESB with additional feedback on the usability of the functionality and whether it covers all material peer grouping criteria. This will help us improve the functionality for its 2024 release, when this selection will also appear in the Benchmark Reports.

What you can expect from this functionality

  • 2023: No changes to the Benchmark Report. GRESB collects market feedback in a structured way to inform user flow development in subsequent years. Participants that provide their input will be able to immediately see whether their preferred peer group can be created based on the makeup of the 2023 benchmark. In October, participants will also be able to see their ranking within their customized peer group in the GRESB Portal.
  • 2024: The Benchmark Report will include both the ranking against the GRESB predefined peer group and the ranking against the customized peer group. In order to incorporate a customized peer group into the Benchmark Report, the “Customize Peer Group” functionality will be available only during the first two weeks of August.
  • 2025: The Benchmark Report will primarily rely on the customized group and all benchmarking insights will be calculated based on it.

The roadmap presented above is subject to change based on feedback collected from participants and investors over the coming 12 months.

For questions about the new “Customize Peer Group” functionality, please contact the GRESB Helpdesk.

Step-by-step guide

1) Log into the GRESB Portal

  • In the Assessment Portal, you will see a new assessment status called “Customize Peer Group.”

Please note that only users with an Account Manager access level can confirm or customize an entity’s peer group.

2) Review your predefined peer group

  • Clicking this new status will redirect you to an overview of your entity’s peer groups, as predefined by GRESB. The methodology used is described in the Reference Guide, Appendix 3B.
  • Entities that submit all three Components are assigned to two peer groups – one for Standing Investments and one for their Development portfolio. Users will be able to confirm and/or customize both peer groups individually.
  • If you’re satisfied with the predefined peer group, you can confirm it by clicking the “Confirm Peer Group” button. This action can be completed only once.
  • If you change your mind and want to submit edits, you can do so by clicking the “Customize peer group” button and follow the steps below.

3) Customize peer group

  • If you want to change peer group allocation, click on “Customize Peer Group”.
  • You will be redirected to an overview page of all characteristics that can be modified. It’s pre-filled with characteristics used to define your initial peer group.
  • You can add or remove characteristics. This year, participants can make any selection they wish, even selecting characteristics that are different from their own entity.
  • Listed entities will also be able to select and deselect individual listed participants from their final peer group composition.
  • Participants can confirm their peer group if the characteristics chosen result in six or more entities for that group.
  • This process can be completed multiple times during the month of August until the participant is satisfied with their final peer group selection.
  • Participants will also be able to submit feedback on the functionality and suggest further improvements.