Nobody doubts that digitization is forcing the real estate industry to undergo major changes. Technological advancement will extend far beyond simple support for administrative procedures, documentation, and communications with clients and tenants. This trend will affect every corner of the industry – for example, by calling whole business models into question and developing entirely new ones. But what challenges and opportunities lurk behind buzzwords like big data?
The real estate industry already has a wealth of data at its disposal. The biggest and most impactful proptech element is data analytics, the power of data that clients can use and then incorporate within their own data. By breaking down data silos and collecting data centrally, they could be mined more deeply and with better focus in order to advance strategic decisions and product development. It’s not enough to digitize your company just for the sake of it – but big data and new technologies are opening up vast potential. The challenge for real estate companies is to derive the greatest possible benefit from the new technical options, in terms of strategies, assets and new lines of business.
In discussing data analytics, Jake Fingert, the General Partner at Cambercreek, recently said, “capture the data in a systematic way, so that at a management level or at a portfolio level, owners can really start to gather greater insight into what’s working and what’s not, and figure out ways to drive performance and ultimately drive returns for their portfolio.” This concept is supported by Alexander Betz, the Head of the Digitalisation Programme, PATRIZIA Immobilien AG when he said, “In the future, real estate will be selling not just space but services that are based on big data. Real estate companies will become solution providers. Services within and around a building and the people who work or live there will become more important.”
The question facing established real estate companies, isn’t should I embrace data analytics, the question is how to engage technology to maximize your data. One thing is clear, a company must have a digital strategy that is supported throughout the organization in order to know and understand their own data and to maintain their competitive advantage as the industry evolves and changes around technology.