Business Transformation

Greystar boosts its bottom line with highly tailored learning and comms

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Greystar is a leading, fully integrated real estate company offering expertise in investment management and the development of rental housing properties globally. 

Find out how Greystar boosted skills by 32%, technical capability by 43%, and customer satisfaction by 15% by giving employees access to the content they need when they need it. 



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Throughout the pandemic, and the global economic disruption that followed, the property industry has been no stranger to adversity, and it continues to be further disrupted by an ongoing cost-of-living crisis.

But rather than battening down the hatches and focusing solely on survival, real estate and property management expert Greystar has been keenly focused on growth. Even amid the backdrop of a pandemic, at Greystar, focus in 2020 was already set on finding new investments, with the business making many high-profile acquisitions.

Greystar emerged from the pandemic incredibly strong and growing at pace, but with this success came new learning needs and considerations.

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The challenge:

Shifting operations in a crisis without taking big risks

Greystar has over 22,000 team members across 238 global markets. With such a large international team, which is still growing, it’s not always easy to keep everyone informed about what matters to them, whether that’s to do with their role, function or location. Navigating so many offices, time zones, roles and languages is no mean feat, especially when it comes to delivering targeted, yet consistent, learning and communications worldwide.

Another challenge for Greystar is organising its huge amount of learning content. From 2020 to 2023, the number of learning modules and assets increased by 65%, with around a third of these being Greystar Originals, created in-house by SMEs. Thousands of content assets, thousands of employees - it’s easy to see why one of Greystar’s major challenges was getting the right content to the right people at the right time, and why their previous SharePoint solution simply wasn’t cutting it.

Finally, the 2020 global pandemic brought with it a brand-new challenge for Greystar: remote working. In light of nationwide lockdowns, Greystar’s entire workforce made the switch to remote work overnight. For many of the team, this was their first time ever working remotely, which meant rapid upskilling, reskilling and knowledge sharing was needed to ensure every single employee had the right support and skills to continue delivering great customer service to landlords, renters and students worldwide.

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The solution: 

Embedding learning in the flow of work

Greystar had already worked with 5app to create its hugely successful Greystar Business School - a learning and comms platform used as the single point of truth for all learning and knowledge at Greystar. Greystar employees visit the Business School for onboarding, compliance, technical training and more, supporting the entire employee lifecycle.

But with thousands of new assets being added, it was getting harder and harder for employees to quickly find what they needed, which led to frustration and wasted time.

Enter Greystar’s game-changing learning academy architecture. The premise was simple: by pulling together content specific to certain roles, functions or countries, employees would find it much easier to find exactly what they needed, when they needed it. 

These academies house all essential on-the-job knowledge, available in just two clicks, in a central location, easily accessible in the flow of work. They also focus on driving a self-directed learning culture, while developing core capabilities. Content ranges from leadership to technical and commercial knowledge and skills, all of which is tailored and signposted to the right person, at the right time.

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The outcome:

Significantly improved employee engagement

Greystar has already realised phenomenal results since introducing its learning academies - particularly when it comes to employee engagement.

After the launch of the learning academies architecture, monthly engagement with Greystar Business School’s learning assets has increased by 63%. Overall academy engagement is up 328% since launch, based on user sessions, unique users and assets opened, showing that embedding learning into the flow of work and improving accessibility is having a major impact on the way Greystar employees interact with content.

Better engagement is great, but does it translate to knowledge and skills?

The answer is a resounding yes! Since the launch of the learning academies, Greystar employees are demonstrating a 32% average improvement in skills, 43% improvement in technical capability and 57% improvement in knowledge.

The positive correlation between content engagement and knowledge improvement suggests that the learning academies are already significantly improving the way employees find what they need, when they need it, with a great improvement in operational efficiency to boot.

“The Academies have enabled us to increase the level of competence and capability of our workforce by offering focused and targeted training in an efficient and scalable way. By providing access to high-quality learning resources at the point of need within the flow of their work, we’ve been able to develop our employees’ skills, knowledge and expertise, which has positively impacted their performance and confidence.”


The impact of the learning academies has been realised outside Greystar. Not only have the employees themselves responded brilliantly to their new and improved access to learning content and comms, but keeping employees engaged and better informed has also had an impact on customer satisfaction.

Analysing average NPS from European Greystar residents before and after the learning academies shows a 15% increase in scores. This now puts Greystar’s NPS at +41 - 11 points above the real estate average of +30.

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The future:

Continued, targeted growth plans with cutting-edge AI

Greystar continues to build and roll out learning academies for all functions across the business, with the International Investment Academy being the next launch planned.

Learning academies will also be rolled out in local languages for international employees, helping Greystar provide consistent learning and development opportunities regardless of seniority, location or language, at zero cost.

Greystar is currently building a cutting-edge platform using AI and automation. This platform will enable Greystar to identify, manage and develop talent more effectively and efficiently, allowing it to further capitalise on the operational efficiency benefits enjoyed since the launch of their learning academies.

Greystar remains committed to delivering on its promises and exceeding expectations. Its focus on continuous improvement and innovation ensures it’s well equipped to navigate the challenges ahead and emerge stronger than ever before - no matter what happens.

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Want to boost your bottom line like Greystar?  Download the full version of this case study. 


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