Since we began building software for our brokerage, I’ve relentlessly questioned how everything is done within the CRE industry. Shifting from the tech space to real estate, I was blown away by how slow the industry has been to adopt technology and the general lack of willingness to innovation on outdated processes.
Our new proprietary transaction management software allows brokers & clients to go from search to signed lease faster, but we needed a better way to work more collaboratively with the landlord reps as well, since they provide all the current content/assets for an available property listing.
I’ll never forget the day walking down a quiet San Diego street grabbing coffee with our Managing Director– I had a lightbulb moment and poised a seemingly simple question to gut check the idea:
He stopped walking and his eyes light up–I immediately had my answer. I saw the wheels start turning in his mind just as they had for me moments before. Our 20 min. coffee turned into a two hour brainstorm discussing the opportunity with a ‘reverse marketplace’ model. We could begin delivering so much additional value across not only tenant reps, but listing agents as well. We were both confident this was something the industry was missing and would drive significant value for all stakeholders, so we got to work.
One of the first automated workflows I built at Elevate was a client search criteria on-boarding form using a combination of Airtable, Zapier, Google Docs & Asana. These search requirements are key inputs for broker running searches of available properties across various of database sites on behalf of their clients. Yet tenant reps rely on that available property data being accurate and complete, most industry professionals will tell you is often incomplete or dated. Any broker would agree that many potential options are also sourced from listing agents responding to requirement emails or proactively sending out marketing emails to promote their space.
Since we already had all the data stored and the internal workflows in place to support this kind of engagement, I decided to beta-test the idea utilizing Airtable’s embed views and form feature to provide listing agents an easy, accessible way to browse our active tenant requirements and submit any properties that fit those searches. The result: