So You Want to Live Forever?

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The Sundance Company                                                      
Established in 1976, The Sundance Company has the experience to help you with your commercial real estate needs throughout the Boise Valley. If your requirements include property management, leasing, real estate development, project planning, construction or space planning then look to us. The Sundance Company has more than 1.5 million square feet of office and industrial space available in prime locations in the Boise metropolitan area. More information is available at www.sundanceco.com or 208.322.7300.

 

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How to Use Analytics to Make CRE Decisions 

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In the past, commercial real estate (CRE) leaders have had limited access to real-time data when planning future space and location requirements. A business might, for example, plan to hire 100 employees, then acquire the space needed to house those employees. But with the recent emergence of big data, enterprise leaders have the tools to implement proactive CRE solutions that operate in tandem with business goals.

CRE is rapidly becoming a more data-driven industry. The process of acquiring, maintaining and exiting properties is highly focused on the numbers — from the cost to buy or lease to the number of employees a property can house and its annual maintenance costs. But the amount of data CRE professionals can now access has proliferated exponentially. IBM found in 2017 that 90% of all existing data was created in the last two years, with data creation multiplying at an unprecedented pace.

However, only a small percentage of all this new data has been analyzed. The ability to collect, sort and analyze raw data aids in determining occupiers’ ability to make real estate decisions that best serve their businesses and their bottom lines, now and in future years. This requires business intelligence solutions that can quickly convert data to both descriptive and predictive formats, crunching numbers for thousands of variables to offer the most comprehensive analysis of an organization’s CRE portfolio. Solutions like these also allow organizations to work across siloed teams, such as people-planning and finance divisions, encompassing organization-wide data and priorities.

Tools like our Colliers360 business intelligence technology allows our experts to automate the process of data collection across data silos so clients can manage their real estate portfolios on one platform, using precise, actionable insights. And Colliers360 is just one example of how CRE analytics software can transform the decision-making process across an enterprise. In this article, we’ll examine the rapid proliferation of big data in the CRE field, discuss the tools available and why they are necessary for future-looking enterprises.

CRE DASHBOARDS AND ANALYTICS: THE BASICS

Let’s explore the basics of business intelligence systems, why they are spreading so quickly, and more importantly, what exactly they do. Cloud computing, data storage solutions and other technological innovations have enabled quick, affordable data collection and analysis. This phenomenon, in turn, means businesses are in a race to find ways to best utilize data in their decision-making processes.

When CRE data analytics are utilized effectively, they offer real estate managers and leaders a host of practical applications. These platforms can collect and sort through vast quantities of data, including stakeholder engagement surveys, enterprise data, macro-economic and market trends, real estate portfolio details, location information and more.

With cloud storage, leaders can take this data with them for on-the-go access to market insights and portfolio planning, among other tools. The Colliers360 platform, for example, is descriptive by immediately providing a snapshot of total real estate holdings and their performance, but it’s also predictive, by allowing analysts to forecast potential outcomes and create a CRE roadmap for the next three to five years based on market activity, people and resource growth, among other factors.

The challenge of analyzing today’s data is that there is too much data to analyze manually. Analytics solutions turn data — more data than can possibly be processed by humans — into actionable information. The one thing analytics can’t do is make decisions. Instead, analytics enable leaders to make informed decisions.

WHY ORGANIZATIONS SHOULD USE CRE ANALYTICS

Why do decision-makers need to use analytics? The answer is simple: Analytics offers businesses a competitive advantage.

No matter the industry, data analytics help enterprise leaders use resources efficiently to meet business goals. In today’s climate, data analytics are essential for managing CRE decisions. Real estate should be part of a holistic solution for managing enterprise growth. Marrying CRE analytics with business goals can provide a plethora of tangible benefits. Six benefits are listed below, but these are just a few of the many ways data analytics are reshaping the CRE planning for the better.

  1. Run the real estate organization more effectively. The most tangible benefit of reporting CRE analytics is access through a single easy-to-access environment. When a well-designed, integrated portal provides one source for the true cost, workload levels and measures that illustrate how effective your organization is delivering service to your internal customers. The power of the data allows you to assess the savings, efficiency metrics, customer satisfaction, and workload levels, as well as reporting on capital and operating expense budgeting effectiveness.
  2. Optimize portfolio performance. Data points that track how and whether real estate holdings are being used can help business leaders streamline their CRE portfolios. In the short term, data can help plan for today’s challenges. For example, leaders can review every single lease that’s expiring in the next two years and analyze business growth to determine their strategy, whether that is exiting, renewing or executing new leases. Combined with data about the company’s growth, goals and employees, analytics can form the basis for a long-term real estate roadmap.
  3. Reshape the working environment. CRE portfolio management isn’t just about the spaces on the map, but about what happens in those spaces. Engagement surveys track information about employee productivity, enjoyment, use of space, equipment and other metrics. Many of the ways people feel at work can turn into data, and this data can feedback to the real estate team, who then manages space to maximize employee productivity, engagement, and collaboration. Sensor logs and mapping tools can also help teams design spaces that match employees’ actual work patterns.
  4. Make sophisticated site selections. Data analytics aggregate every factor you could possibly consider when making a real estate decision including available labor, real estate costs, transportation channels, and market trends to provide a sophisticated analysis of risk and ROI. Data like this adds clarity to the site selection process.
  5. Future-proof real estate holdings. How much space will you need in five years? What kind of employees do you want to attract? Where is the labor market headed? With market performance tools and predictive analytics, decision-makers can plan proactively for business goals and market trends instead of reacting to market conditions, saving time and money in the process.
  6. A highly effective form of Customer Relationship Management (CRM). If you are reaping the benefits of points one through five noted above, then you will gain the confidence to lead evidence-based discussions with the business units you serve. The most effective form of CRM is bringing proactive ideas and opportunities to your internal partners. Being empowered with the analytics to help a business unit understand how they can reduce costs, identify better growth markets or illustrate how they are performing relative to other business counterparts or company benchmarks, allows you to set priorities and plans outside of traditional lease expirations.

We are moving from data-supported businesses toward data-centric businesses. Analytics tools must be in the forefront for the future-looking enterprise and are just as important for managing your real estate portfolio as for guiding important business decisions. Strategic real estate planning not only benefits your bottom line but also positions your firm to successfully meet your unique business goals.

Data analytics offer the most holistic basis for smart, future-thinking decision-making about your CRE portfolio. With real-time visibility, clients can develop customized strategies to make informed business decisions.

Portions of this article originally appeared on the Collier’s International website.

The Sundance Company                                                      
Established in 1976, The Sundance Company has the experience to help you with your commercial real estate needs throughout the Boise Valley. If your requirements include property management, leasing, real estate development, project planning, construction or space planning then look to us. The Sundance Company has more than 1.5 million square feet of office and industrial space available in prime locations in the Boise metropolitan area. More information is available at www.sundanceco.com or 208.322.7300.

 

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The Sundance Company                                                      
Established in 1976, The Sundance Company has the experience to help you with your commercial real estate needs throughout the Boise Valley. If your requirements include property management, leasing, real estate development, project planning, construction or space planning then look to us. The Sundance Company has more than 1.5 million square feet of office and industrial space available in prime locations in the Boise metropolitan area. More information is available at www.sundanceco.com or 208.322.7300.

Don’t Write Another Email Until You Read This

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Emails. Gotta write them. Gotta send them. But the person who gets them doesn’t have to do a single thing. They can ignore, delete, or just let them linger in inbox purgatory.

Which isn’t that encouraging, because after you spend all that time writing just the right message to a prospect, the last place you want it to go is in the trash.

So how do you write emails that get read—and even better, get a response? Today we’re sharing our top tips for writing must-read emails.

  1. Make your subject line a slippery slope

Think of your subject line as a “slippery slope”—a phrase that makes your prospect want to click and read more. If you can’t pique their interest with this short sentence, then forget about the email itself. It’s not going to get read.

Here are three tips for a great subject line:

Put the important words up front. If people are reading your email on a smartphone, the subject line will get cut off at some point. Space is precious here—don’t waste it. Your subject line should be 6-10 words long.

Keep it simple and clear. What will the person get from reading this email? Say it up front. Don’t write something vague like, “Do you have a moment?” or “Good time to talk?”

Use the person’s first name. Research suggests that people are more likely to click on emails that use their first name in the subject line.

  1. Don’t do what everybody else does

Everybody else fills their emails with reasons prospects should work with them. And all of their emails sound the same: I’ve done this, I’ve done that, I’ve been in this industry for 20 years, I’d like to talk.

Don’t do this. Instead, make your email about your prospect and their challenges or opportunities. For a refresher on how to do this, check out our related post on how to turn “me”-centered language into “you”-centered phrases people are more likely to respond to.

  1. Only ask for one thing

Ever get an email and think, “Huh? What does this person want me to do?” That’s probably because the sender was so eager to tell you about everything that they forgot one very important thing: never ask for more than one thing in an email!

Decide what you want your email to do. Do you want people to check out a listing? To look out for your phone call? To set up a meeting? Then, ask clearly for just that one thing. It makes it simple for people to respond with, “Yeah, sure, let’s do this!” instead of wondering how to respond at all, and then letting your email languish in their inbox unanswered.

  1. Put a timeframe on it.

Whatever your ask is, put a timeframe around it. For example, “Let’s connect this week—I can give you a call on Friday.” Or, “Send me a quick ‘yes’ now if you’re interested, and we can figure out the details this week.”

People appreciate when you let them know how much time they have to take you up on an offer, get a special perk, or simply respond to say they’re interested. It transforms your email from an ambiguous ask to a concrete action item, making it more likely that people will respond.

  1. Give the freedom of choice

Now that you’ve made it clear what you want your prospect to do, give them the freedom to do it. Collectively, studies done on over 22,000 people show that they’re way more likely to take you up on your offer if you tell them, “But you are free to [insert action here].”

So, tell them: “You are free to choose” or “I’d love to meet, but the choice is totally up to you” or “I think this would be extremely useful, but of course you are free to decide what’s best for you.” The exact wording doesn’t matter; it’s the spirit that those words convey that matters most. Even saying something like “don’t feel obliged” will work.

  1. Slash it in half

To quote the late great American novelist Elmore Leonard, “I leave out the parts that people skip.”

Once you’ve written your email, go back over it and start hitting “delete.” Omit every word that isn’t pulling its weight by either specifically helping your prospect or persuading them to do the thing you’re asking (see tip #3). Cut out the fluff, the clichés, and the filler. You’ve got 30 seconds to inspire action. Don’t waste them.

Portions of this article originally appeared on the Apto website.

The Sundance Company                                                      
Established in 1976, The Sundance Company has the experience to help you with your commercial real estate needs throughout the Boise Valley. If your requirements include property management, leasing, real estate development, project planning, construction or space planning then look to us. The Sundance Company has more than 1.5 million square feet of office and industrial space available in prime locations in the Boise metropolitan area. More information is available at www.sundanceco.com or 208.322.7300.

 

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About The Sundance Company                                                      
Established in 1976, The Sundance Company has the experience to help you with your commercial real estate needs throughout the Boise Valley. If your requirements include property management, leasing, real estate development, project planning, construction or space planning then look to us. The Sundance Company has more than 1.5 million square feet of office and industrial space available in prime locations in the Boise metropolitan area. More information is available at www.sundanceco.com or 208.322.7300.

How Tech Tools Help CRE Professionals Accomplish More

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Five years ago, “prop tech” was a misunderstood buzzword that no one seemed to know how to define. These days, it is a common phrase in almost every commercial real estate (CRE) professional’s lexicon. But what’s more, prop tech is now regarded as an essential tool that is revolutionizing the way industry professionals conduct business and grow relationships with their clients.

Prop tech — shorthand for property technology — is real estate-focused technology that helps us apply data to the way we research, manage, buy and sell properties. While we have been using technology in the real estate world for decades, this new wave of property-specific innovation has been the real catalyst. From new AI-powered 3-D property tours to nationwide commercial real estate property search databases and cloud-based property management software to technology-backed investment platforms, prop tech tools are becoming integrated into all facets of our business.

Having spent more than 40 years in the industry, including providing some of the aforementioned services, I’ve witnessed this prop tech revolution firsthand. While some might say that technology could possibly make the role of real estate broker obsolete, I believe these innovations can help CRE professionals, as well as their clients, accomplish more than ever.

In order to fully reap the rewards that prop tech offers, we must understand its influence, but also learn how to strategically integrate it into the work we do. For the commercial real estate sector specifically, technology offers the ability to optimize a transaction at almost any phase, including how CRE professionals market properties, work with clients and develop business strategies.

Bolstering Relationships, Strategy And Marketing

For many years, CRE professionals have been the only resource. Now, new technology enhances the work they do. The rise of prop tech means consumers have more data available to them than ever, which impacts how clients and real estate professionals work together. These clients often come to the table as savvy buyers or sellers, equipped with a more solid understanding of the local market as well as what they want in their next space. Some might say knowledgeable clients could challenge a professional’s authority, but in truth, knowledge is power. A clear, shared vision enhances communication and collaboration, removes the guesswork and puts a property transaction that much further ahead.

The surge of readily available data also creates savvier CRE professionals. Data can inform, inspire and drive business strategies in new ways. For example, a broker can identify the sort of properties that are trending in their local market, or pinpoint how a particular property is resonating with potential buyers. This insight can help draw the line from a potential lead to a successful real estate transaction. New technologies can also help professionals operate more efficiently by reducing workload or automating processes.

With the rapidly expanding selection of prop tech platforms available, CRE professionals have more tools than ever to market new properties and connect with potential buyers. And as the user base for these search tools increases, so does the number of clients’ eyes a CRE professional can reach.

Using Prop tech To Stay Ahead In The Market

Looking at the many areas of the real estate business, it is easy to see the positive influence that prop tech has delivered. While the tools exist, there are many different approaches to utilizing them. Today’s real estate professionals have to find ways to apply these technological innovations to their own business models.

In my experience, this can be one of the most daunting challenges when it comes to incorporating technology. First ask, “What problems do we want to solve?” And then ask, “What are the right tools to get us there?”

Using tech to automate a demanding business process could allow more time for a broker to spend in face-to-face meetings with clients. Optimized functions of the tools used every day, now powered by technology, can help buyers and investors find the right property faster, expediting the transaction process for both the broker and the client. With the right fit, prop tech can help everyone stay ahead in the commercial real estate market.

Portions of this article originally appeared on the Forbes website.

About The Sundance Company                                                      
Established in 1976, The Sundance Company has the experience to help you with your commercial real estate needs throughout the Boise Valley. If your requirements include property management, leasing, real estate development, project planning, construction or space planning then look to us. The Sundance Company has more than 1.5 million square feet of office and industrial space available in prime locations in the Boise metropolitan area. More information is available at www.sundanceco.com or 208.322.7300.

 

The Far-Reaching Impact of AI

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About The Sundance Company                                                      
Established in 1976, The Sundance Company has the experience to help you with your commercial real estate needs throughout the Boise Valley. If your requirements include property management, leasing, real estate development, project planning, construction or space planning then look to us. The Sundance Company has more than 1.5 million square feet of office and industrial space available in prime locations in the Boise metropolitan area. More information is available at www.sundanceco.com or 208.322.7300.