Software seems to have become something of a dog’s breakfast with some of the established players scrabbling to rival PSG’s growing, and I would suggest threatening, market share.
The one thing that umbrella ownership of several smaller companies will give is the ability to improve communications between those companies.
Somehow the [unintentional] divide and conquer nature of having many CRM suppliers, to an industry that desperately needs a cohesive approach, leaves the rest of the market playing catch-up – but catch-up it needs to do.
Proptech leaves many agents dazzled as to what it is they need to be looking at next, but integration of legal, Land Registry and mortgage relevant data into agents’ CRM software is as good a place as any to start.
Picking up data from such third party sources is a lovely idea but needs to be simple. Lots of different systems adds complication – and sadly it does seem as if those who seek to supply such data to agents often don’t seem to ask them what it is they actually want first. The old epithet ‘Keep It Simple Stupid’ applies.
Having talked to many different agents it seems some are happy to let such information-based third party systems communicate with their CRM software via human input whilst others want automatic feeds citing the fact that getting negotiators and admin staff to actually input data into the CRM systems they run already is already difficult enough.
Given it’s the agents that want the data, I would suggest that rather than lumbering agents with complicated and clunky systems, IF what they are supplying genuinely helps an agent’s life they’ll embrace it and make the effort to use it, assuming it’s affordable and makes sense.
Proptech needs to be something that enhances the working experience for those at the sharp end, ie negotiators and admin staff, or solves a problem they have, or indeed didn’t know they had.
From what I’m hearing, it appears that some of the well established names in CRM are beginning to wake up, and not a moment too soon.