How Cash Flow Modeling & Valuation platforms make your life easier and business more profitable

Traditionally, the commercial real estate industry has been sluggish to adopt new technologies. According to the Deloitte Insights 2022 Commercial Real Estate Outlook, 80% of the 400 industry participants surveyed “do not have fully modernized core systems that could easily incorporate emerging technologies”.

This is a little amazing given the fervor that the topic of tech innovation has generated in other industries and especially in our personal lives.

We would NEVER tolerate the things in our personal lives that we do in our business lives. We want things to be easy. We want things to be fast. We want things to be intuitive. We want to get to our information from anywhere, at any time.

Would we be fine being told we had to Remote Desktop to a server somewhere to check our favorite sports score or see the stats of your last workout? No way. We want everything securely, but easily, available from anywhere in the world 24/7/365. We want the application to be fast and by fast we mean instantaneously responsive.

CRE people are no different. We have just gotten accustomed to lowering our technological standards for so many decades that we find it hard to change. We get it, we have worked for years on the transaction side of the business. It’s just something people get conditioned to accept.

On the other hand, now working at a tech company, we see the other side of the coin. Incessant drive to increase efficiency and productivity, and be the best we can be has taught us that your tools need to help you. Efficiency and productivity aren’t driven by simply whipping the horses to go faster or buying more horses. Its creating by hiring amazing people, giving them incredible tools, and letting them attack the problems you face.

So what does that mean:

  • Utilize cloud-based platforms that can provide access anywhere at any time. Hint: the easier you make it for your employees the more they will want to work, and the more they will get done in each hour of work.

  • Seek out systems designed to foster collaboration amongst colleagues and clients alike. In-app collaboration features allow professionals to distribute time-consuming processes across multiple people and organizations to expedite and streamline the assignment including the review process.

  • Don’t build your own. Companies struggle with the idea of build versus buy all the time. Focus on what makes you money. Don’t reinvent the wheel. As a CRE professional, you profit by doing deals, not building technological infrastructure. Technology requires constant investment of time and money. It is an expensive and rapidly depreciating asset. If you don’t constantly upkeep it, eventually it becomes worthless. Let someone else do that – you rent it.

  • Pick only products that have ravingly happy clients. Ask around. CRE is a small world at the end of the day. Your network all uses one system or another. Are they happy with it? Even more important, are they happy with how they are treated? Think about the difference you feel in calling a phone company or airline, versus a company that you can tell truly cares about your business and client experience. Pick that company 100 out of 100 times. If your network tells you that they don’t enjoy the experience of working with a vendor, and you choose them, that’s on you.

  • Evaluate systems that have robust API architecture that can streamline data ingestion, data extraction, and reporting. To this day, many firms continue to work under the decades-old system of copy/paste and merging of files to complete and finalize their work product. The appraisal industry is infamous for this, but it permeates almost all of CRE. Today’s modern platforms can eliminate this time-consuming and error-prone practice of the past.

  • Weaponize your own data (and keep it to yourself, don’t give it to your competitors)! Leverage systems that can centralize and standardize your data to gain further insight into trends across multiple property types, portfolios, and markets. Lightning-fast access to your data, aggregated in mass is a HUGE competitive advantage. If you don’t believe it, ask yourself why all the biggest and most powerful companies in the world are data companies. Whether they be Netflix or Google or Facebook or someone else. Data teaches them every day how to improve their products. They don’t guess. They analyze. Relentlessly. Be like them! You have an enormous treasure trove of data (think every deal you ever look at). Productize it. Learn from it.
  • Not only does modern and new technology improve efficiency and scalability of the business (i.e. complete more assignments), but it also helps drive employee satisfaction and retention. Imagine showing up to work on your first day and the supervisor hands you an abacus or a 300-page manual to learn an outdated and overly complex system. Give employees the tools they need to work more efficiently and eliminate unnecessary technological roadblocks. Work smarter not harder.

The world has started rapidly digitizing and businesses that do not will be left behind by more innovative competitors. Benjamin Franklin once said, “Don't put off until tomorrow what you can do today”.

Click here to get ahead of 80% of your competition. Rockport VAL can get you started on your path to greater success and digital transformation of your data and processes.


 

Posted by Will Trepp

COO of The Rockport Group

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