COVID has forced every industry to embrace new technologies, to cope with the challenges of the pandemic. Learning how to remain productive while away from the office has plenty of lessons for the property industry when it comes to moving with the times. Those who remain stuck in their ways risk being pushed aside.
For starters, technology like Sorted Services is the key to streamlining workflows, in order to save both time and money for property professionals. For example, automation can handle about half of the tasks that occupy an agent’s time and mental energy – such as providing a seamless tenant onboarding process, complete with reference checking and leasing handovers.
Beyond this, the technology can assist agents with better-managing clients, as well as liaising between renters and owners. This includes facilitating and negotiating lease renewals, organising repairs or maintenance, and replying to client and tenant inquiries.
The idea isn’t to downplay the value of agents or put them out of a job, in fact it’s the very opposite.
Automation frees agents from mundane repetitive tasks, so they can put that time and effort into more important things – just like Excel freed accountants from adding up columns of numbers, so they could evolve into trusted business advisors.
For agents, automation lets them spend more time on those important tasks which require the human touch, like building the business, strengthening relationships and delivering excellent customer service.
It works both ways, as today’s customers have rapidly changing needs and increased demands. They expect seamless digital interaction with service providers, it’s not negotiable.
Digitising and automating cumbersome manual paperwork and processes is a real-gamer changer in the property industry – increasing productivity, reducing operational costs and enhancing the overall customer experience. Yet, this kind of efficiency boost is still only the low-hanging fruit when it comes to the full potential of property technology.
Looking to the future, agents need to evolve to become more than just facilitators, just like accountants became more than human calculators. A great agent needs to convey knowledge and expertise. In order words, they need to bring value to the table and make themselves an invaluable part of the process.
The property industry has access to a wealth of data. It can seem overwhelming but, with the right tools, all that data can be turned into actionable insight. Advanced analytics strategies let agents get on the front foot, crunching the numbers to help them find the precious needle in a haystack of information.
For example, the technology can optimise a range of processes such as tenant attraction and churn, commercial lease negotiations and asset valuation. It can also improve tenant experience and operations. They’re all classic examples of agents learning how to work smarter through technology, rather than simply working harder.
Beyond advanced number crunching, new technology brings the next generation of augmented and virtual reality, to assist agents with providing personalised service. It further blurs the boundaries between the physical and digital worlds when it comes to engaging with clients on their own terms, anywhere, anytime.
Meanwhile, when it comes to dealing with the physical world, smart building solutions can streamline property management to unlock efficiencies and create new opportunities.
COVID might have jolted the industry from its technological slumber, but it’s only the beginning when it comes to revitalising Australia’s property industry and embracing the future.