As talks of digital transformation begin to dominate the world of corporate real estate, we often speak to companies attempting to build a portfolio management software in-house.
While the thought makes sense (a custom solution with metrics and integrations tailored to you), do you have the manpower it takes to build a solution like this? There have to be a lot of hands on deck to create and keep a tool like this running. You’ve got smart people, no doubt. But it will take time and research (and a lot of money) to create this thing. Then it takes even more time, research, money, and constant monitoring to keep it going.
As a proptech provider, we know that people and technology are both equal parts in ensuring the success of such an undertaking. Our technology is meant to enhance and be enhanced by the human touch. Here’s why:
Imagine you’re occupying a specialized distribution facility in a suburban market. Now think of all the possible comps within your submarket you might be provided on first glance. In most cases, this is where the story ends.
But after taking a more detailed look, your team realizes this distribution facility is actually in a very tight submarket, as you’re strategically located next to a retailer’s headquarters. What were presented as comps are now completely irrelevant to your unique portfolio.
We recently worked with an organization facing this exact case of selection bias. The submarket was the tip of the iceberg; only when we drilled down deeper did we truly understand the context that allowed us to provide the company with the information that was actually relevant to them.
This is where subject matter expertise comes in. There will always be outliers in your data that tie directly to decisions with very large financial impact. With the help of experienced data nerds, you can arrive at the story behind the site that allows for a total understanding of your company’s unique portfolio.
Your internal CRE organization and external service providers all serve a purpose; each member of the larger team carries out a crucial function in order to keep the ball rolling. But what if each person could elevate themselves within his or her role? What if every member of the team could do things smarter? Better? Faster? Imagine.
That’s what proptech does. It should activate and elevate; it should not take away.
We know that data and analytics have the power to enhance real estate decisions and transactions; therefore a software solution that provides your team with these things is capable of bringing relationships with service providers to the next level by creating a knowledge base that’s enriched with unbiased data sources and organized in a way that helps you extract key insights at the click of a button.
Internally, we often ask ourselves and other members of the team: Is this your highest and best use? In other words, is this the best use of precious time, limited resources, and brainpower? We often ask this in reference to time-consuming tasks that could be automated our outsourced according to comparative advantage. We allude to this same question when speaking with our clients. We’ve found that corporate real estate executives spend roughly 85% of their time carrying out tactical functions and only 15% strategizing.
Could time spent wrangling data or compiling reports be better spent strategizing? Ask yourself what your highest and best use is, and then compare it with the time you spend on tasks that don’t align with that. Our take on proptech encourages clients to achieve their highest and best use by making painful (but necessary) real estate tasks like reporting and data wrangling simple.