by Craig Hancock, CEO and Co-founder at RealMassive
The commercial real estate industry has reached an inflection point as traditional business practices succumb to market pressures that new technologies are creating. Despite negative rhetoric around lagging adoption rates in Commercial Real Estate (CRE), we see professionals discovering clever ways to leverage data transparency and real-time collaboration. Still, as business processes respond to the influx of new solutions, the basic building blocks of the industry remain intact. Research, due diligence, and relationships are and will always be the bedrock of CRE. RealMassive’s strategy is predicated on innovating and collaborating with the industry, not disrupting it. We rely on the collective ingenuity of the market to inform our product roadmap, which is why I’m excited to jumpstart this particular initiative. We recently polled emerging and influential voices in the industry to collect their perspectives on the trends in data and technology that are enabling a new normal in CRE. This is the start of an ongoing conversation, and below you’ll find a sneak peek of what we learned…
Timely access to accurate and relevant data, once a competitive advantage in commercial real estate, is becoming an industry standard. Open source software and API’s are quickly replacing prohibitive knowledge monopolies, and with more data coming to market we’re seeing heightened demand for actionable insights. Real-time analytics can become a significant informant to CRE, providing faster, more accurate information on changes in supply and demand. Barbi Reuter of Cush-Wake | PICOR reminds us, “Data underlies sound CRE decisions – access expedites and informs decision making.” Although data will never replace instinct and experience, it’s clear that even marginal investments in technology can have a dramatic impact on business. Improving access to data addresses the challenges facing the industry and opens up incredible potential for profitable growth.
Mobility is all about staying connected and engaged with your marketplace and stakeholders. New mobile offerings are helping professionals modernize the concept of exceptional and on-demand customer service. Given the on-the-go nature of the job, brokers are uniquely positioned to leverage advancements in mobile-optimized information and collaboration. For industry professionals traveling from building to meeting room to work site, premium mobile technology is not just an accelerator, but a necessity. GPS, wifi hotspots, and multi-screen experiences have redefined expectations of how and where we work, enabling full-fidelity business impact through remote work and 24/7 connectivity. According to Evan Stone, Managing Director at JLL, “Mobile technology usage by CRE professionals is freeing people from their desks and helping them become more efficient.” Vast computing power now resides in the pockets of professionals enabling remote, real-time access to verify data and stay on top of market dynamics, not to mention critical collaboration opportunities with clients and partners.
A culture conducive to transformation is the hallmark of modern, maturing organizations. Forward-thinking firms seek to establish a culture of innovation that ensures perpetual idea generation while remaining highly efficient and productive. Organizations that have a strong propensity to encourage risk taking, foster innovation, and develop collaborative work environments will succeed in the modern ecosystem. According to David Dunn, owner of SVN/Dunn Commercial, “We stay on top of the current real estate trends, and we embrace innovation any way we can.” Early adopters of social media, for example are strengthening customer and stakeholder relationships and engaging new audiences where they live. Digital leader and best-selling author Erik Qualman affirms, “social media isn’t a tech play, it’s a relationship play. It’s living, breathing…it’s your customer…your lifeblood.”
Becoming a data-driven organization is about more than just being tech savvy. Success in the digital age still depends on human touch and the adaptability of the people who wield modern technology. While CRE technologies often encourage professionals to look beyond “business as usual” to a digital-first future, successful outcomes will rely upon the industry’s long-standing foundation of relationships, collaboration and access to data.
“Success in the digital age still depends on human touch and the adaptability of the people who wield modern technology.” “Success in the digital age still depends on human touch.” Trends Shaping the Modern CREcosystem | Tweet This!
This ongoing conversation will take many different forms, beginning with this report which features emerging and influential industry professionals. Over time we expect to explore these topics by vertical, geography, and function so insights and evolution can be shared with a broader audience. We invite you to join us in this discussion which we hope will pervade business meetings, digital and social media, and industry events. We want your unique perspectives and look forward to innovating together to modernize our dynamic industry.
Join the Conversation on Twitter: #CREcosystem