Why CRE Professionals Must Embrace Tech
Turner Levison | September 28, 2018
Originally posted on CRETech
“Business as usual” does not exist in the commercial real estate industry. The modern world demands mobility, instant information, and better customer service. Commercial real estate professionals can’t meet these challenges in the “old way” of conducting business. Embracing technology solutions delivers clear benefits, like:
1) EFFICIENT DAILY WORKFLOW
Negotiating for clients is a small chunk of the daily workload commercial real estate professionals tackle. Adopting automation tools assist CRE leaders with the necessary busy work.
There’s an incredible number of tools available to track and handle daily tasks. Take customer relationship management (CRM) tools that track contacts. Automated alerts remind users when to check in with key clients, simplify marketing list generation, and sync with marketing programs. Artificial intelligence programs like X.ai work with calendars to handle scheduling. Chatbots identify which website queries could be real potential leads versus who is just fishing. Document sharing programs help collaboration across teams and with clients. The possibilities continue into deal management, accounting, and prospecting, and lease management.
2) BETTER BUSINESS DECISIONS
Every decision contains some degree of risk, but predictive analytics technology reduces that risk. Take the appraisal industry as an example. A 2011 study on appraisal accuracyfound that commercial appraisals are typically up to 12 percent above or below the subsequent transaction price. Automated underwriting tools, like Enodo for multifamily real estate, analyze potential acquisitions for better decision making. Could a business be preparing to lease up or purchase a commercial space? Data educates commercial real estate professionals about potential client needs, as seen with ProspectNow.
Even generating reports from the latest data is simpler with today’s technological resources. The latest in easy-to-read data dashboards arm CRE professionals with the real-time information they need to improve their operating expenses, recognize investment opportunities, and boost client satisfaction. Visualizations are calculated instantly without sorting, filtering, or manipulating Excel spreadsheets.
3) DELIVERING CONVENIENCE TO CLIENTS
We are accustomed to a world streamlined by the latest innovations. Our clients like the convenience self-researching acquisitions on public listing exchanges. They like contacting professionals on their terms, whether a chatbox at 10 pm or an email at 9 am. Electronic document signing saves them time and allows deals to be executed from anywhere. Clients demand these conveniences and it’s up to real estate professionals to deliver.
4) BETTER, CLIENT-FOCUSED SERVICES.
Who doesn’t want to deliver the best service possible? The platforms available help commercial real estate professionals exceed client expectations. Brokers equipped with real-time, accurate market data, provide better advisory services to their clients. With the automation available, CRE professionals have more time to lend valuable market advice, handle complex negotiations with skill, and deliver winning customer service. Facility managers spend less time pouring over accounting spreadsheets and more time nurturing tenant relationships. Architects and developers impress clients with immersive virtual build-outs to show that’s possible in a space and reduce expensive mid-construction changes.
5) MORE TIME FOR MORE DEALS
For brokers, it’s basic math: more deals equals more commissions and more opportunities to expand business. According to a Buildout survey, DNA of CRE, one-third of brokers spend over eleven hours a week on marketing tasks and 26 percent spend six-to-ten hours devoted to administrative work. Reducing this time opens brokers schedules for vital tasks: prospecting, nurturing, negotiating. Freeing up the time allows brokers to increase their workload, and consequently, their bottom lines.
Technology can’t solve every problem, but it does alleviate redundant tasks and assist CRE professionals with their most important work. Adopting technology solutions is how overwhelmed professionals realize their business goals. Let data inform your decision-making and watch your business blossoms as customers are wowed by your services.