Tishman Speyer

Elevating the Tenant Experience

Industry Real Estate
Phone showing the Tishman Speyer Zo App welcome screen
Phone showing the Tishman Speyer Zo App Learn More screen
Tishman Speyer Logo


The challenge

Tishman Speyer is an established global commercial real estate company that offers tenants a selection of curated services and amenities offerings via the ZO. program and an accompanying app. The ZO. program itself is innovative, but the app supporting the program wasn’t keeping up.

With a plan already in motion to upgrade and streamline the ZO. app, the global pandemic hit suddenly, changing the way we socialize in person and significantly impacting how we all come together. These circumstances catalyzed exceptional opportunities to reimagine the mobile app, web app, and marketing website and enhance the entire omnichannel ZO. experience.

Three people sitting together and laughing
Phone showing the your booking screen


A strategic start

Understanding who will be directly engaged with ZO. was crucial. By conducting research, we studied 3 primary cohorts of users and how their needs differ:

  1. The ZO. teams at each property who manage content and schedule events

  2. The company leaders who promote ZO. within their companies and

  3. The employees and office workers who make up the bulk of the end-users

The feedback of all three cohorts inspired every step we took.

UI Designs of the Zo App

Making it personal

With a significant number of amenities available, it could get challenging for end-users to make the app a part of their day-to-day life. End-users wanted to see events and services catered to their interests. One user shared, “It’s hard to build a new app into my routine unless there is some personalization that can notify me.” Feedback such as this solidified the need to add personalized UX to ZO.

To drive higher engagement we built functionalities to address users by name and send smart, timely notifications. As the app evolves further, we continue to include newer forms of personalization so that ZO. teams can build better relationships with their users.

Boosting discovery

We re-architected how content is organized, allowing ZO. to have more categories for amenities with the flexibility to localize by campus and language. In addition, ZO. property teams can now highlight ‘hero’ content to bring attention to cornerstone events. More natural language categorization of content, without limitations, aided discovery and findability.

Two phones showing different screens of the Zo App

Reacting to a global pandemic

COVID-19 necessitated a quick pivot, as ZO. programming was interrupted by social distancing regulations overnight. To support this transition, we integrated virtual video programming into the app so users could attend yoga, cooking classes, seminars, and more, all from the safety of home. This unforeseen but essential implementation led to deeper branded relationships between Tishman Speyer and its tenants.

To serve those still visiting Tishman Speyer buildings in person, we built in COVID-19 disclaimers into the ZO. app. Users are now reassured that buildings are being regularly cleaned, physical distancing measures are in place, and any significant changes to building policies are communicated clearly.

UI designs of the Zo App

Sophisticated and functional design

We created a clean, sophisticated website explaining ZO., pushing the existing branding to new heights, complying with AA accessibility standards, and coordinating them throughout the ZO. experience.

The redesign went beyond visuals by also reevaluating functionality. We established image guidelines and streamlined the booking process so users can register for events with ease. Using familiar design patterns, we aligned interactions and design elements between the mobile and web app, unifying the ZO. experience and emphasizing the nature of its brand.

UI Designs of the Zo App

Tech enhancements

The stack comprised React and React Native for the front-end, and Python and Django on the back-end. We brought all the code libraries up to date, refactored how the UI is built to improve maintainability, and optimized performance. This work paves an easier path for future enhancements to come.

UI Design of the Zo App

Streamlining administration

As a global enterprise with over 55,000 users across fifteen cities, ZO. is administered by independent campus teams. Previously, all eCommerce was run through one Stripe account, leading to added foreign exchange fees and manual bookkeeping to settle payments across campuses. With this in mind, we integrated Stripe Connect, a payment system that allows each campus to create, administer, and maintain their own Stripe account, eliminating foreign exchange fees and manual bookkeeping.

Map showing all the Zo locations


The revitalized ZO. mobile app, web app, and marketing website launched successfully in December 2020 and currently has a 4.2-star rating on the app store. In a time where customer needs are continuously evolving in the post-pandemic era, the ZO. program has the right digital tools in place to adapt to meet them.

“Embodying a human-centric mindset is vital in our industry, and that is something we were able to successfully incorporate into the ZO. app with the help of Apply Digital. The ZO. experience works for us and, most importantly, for our users.”

— Miranda Langan | Senior Marketing Director