This post originally appeared on tBL member ClientLooks’s blog ClientLook and is republished with permission. Find out how to syndicate your content with theBrokerList.
Would you believe it if we told you that nearly one-third of the global commercial real estate industry is still primarily using spreadsheets for asset and portfolio management? That was a finding of a recent study that surveyed 300 CRE professionals. This represents up to $11 trillion in assets, being managed manually. Considering the potential for inaccuracies due to human error that this method involves, this is a baffling statistic.
The attitude toward utilizing digital tools is very different in other industries. Spending on technology solutions in the Healthcare and Financial Services industries is double that in CRE. Technology implementation has been demonstrated as cost-effective, and there are powerful tools available now that specifically address CRE problems and processes, so why the gap?
Several things can help explain the slow and uneven tech adoption that we’ve seen in CRE. For starters, the industry is enormous. Commercial real estate in the U.S. has a value that’s roughly equivalent to the U.S. Stock Market, and it includes a diverse array of properties and players. It’s impacted by legislation, demographics, and economic trends. Occupations within the industry include brokers and investors, certainly, but also developers, contractors, architects, vendors and management companies. Finding solutions that work in this complex environment can be challenging.
Some other barriers to adoption include:
Perceived Expense: This is not significant compared with the cost of continuing to operate without digital tools. Technology solutions can be gradually integrated as the budget allows.
Compatibility Issues: A common concern is the idea that a product may be useful, but if it’s not compatible with what others are using, it has limited value. This argument is becoming increasingly less valid, as more and more software moves to the Cloud and is designed to integrate smoothly with other products, on any device.