There is a lot of controversy around technology being a tool or a threat. Technology’s influence in the world is highly dependent upon external factors. These factors are much more important than the evolution of technology itself as they determine its use. It can be used to inspire or catalyze change just as easily as it can be used in ways that are detrimental to society.
Tools just like technology were meant to be used, but how they are used, who uses them, and what they use them for determines their impact. Technology has been in use across different sectors within the real estate industry. It has brought about automated processes that have reduced human errors on repetitive tasks, analyzing data faster and more accurately improving the entire valuation process. It has gone beyond property valuations, improving efficiency, reducing operating costs, and optimizing production throughout the different sectors of the real estate industry. From the design phase to the management of the property upon completion, it has added extrinsic value to the real estate value chain.
On the other hand, not every result from technological breakthroughs is always positive. And because losses are more painful than gains, some real estate professionals view it as a threat as they fear technology is likely to take their jobs. As if that is not enough, human interactions are also threatened by the heightened use of technology due to the use of social media. Communication has slowly become impersonal between clients and real estate professionals. As human conversations are being replaced by chatbots. Additionally, some of the technologies that have come to play have affected different work models. A good example is the introduction of Airbnb and how it has negatively impacted the hotel business. The current state of retail has also been threatened by Amazon and other online stores which allow for the elimination of in-person stores.
Technology provides us with huge opportunities and big challenges at the same time. Industry players have to keep up with technology as it is not only disrupting how they carry out business but is also disrupting consumers. Remember in one of our previous articles “The Future of Real Estate” we mentioned that real estate is not only about buildings and infrastructure. There has been a higher desire to achieve live, work, and play. Big data has improved customer service by providing insights on consumer patterns and behaviors which have in turn improved productivity and personalized customer experience. Those that are willing to adopt technology sooner are likely to gain a market advantage.
One key thing to do for people to embrace technology is to communicate a positive agenda while keeping track and minimizing the negative impacts of the disruption to make sure that no one is left behind. That way we can make more people aware of the good side of technology that is experienced by all professionals but also focuses on inclusive solutions to help people that are on the other side of that coin to embrace this new world. When you start to look at technology as a helping hand, you begin to understand that it is built to aid us in advancing the way we work.