The great proptech race: why businesses should tap into its potential

In the dynamic and ever-evolving digital realm of today, businesses in every sector are ceaselessly pursuing innovative strategies to bolster efficiency, optimise operations, and secure a competitive edge.

This race to innovation has only become more urgent in the current economic outlook of spiralling interest rates. However, the property industry has often lagged on the uptake of technology.

From open banking to AI, businesses now have a myriad of technology solutions at their disposal, capable of revolutionising their operations, meeting environmental, social, and governance (ESG) targets, enhancing customer experience, and unlocking new avenues for growth and profitability. However, many property businesses are inadvertently hindering their own progress by failing to harness the potential of disruptive proptech technologies. It is crucial for such enterprises to understand the value that proptech can provide, enabling them to tap into its transformative capabilities and gain a competitive edge in the increasingly competitive UK property market. So, how can property businesses cut through the technology noise?

Harnessing the power of open banking

Open banking presents a multitude of benefits that can profoundly reshape the operational landscape for property businesses. One such advantage lies in the automation of payment processes. By integrating open banking and payment gateway application programming interfaces (APIs) into property management platforms, businesses can drastically streamline  efficiencies and even improve employee satisfaction by cutting down on time drains.

Open banking also harbours significant potential for the property industry in terms of collaboration and transparency. Third-party developers and proptech companies can access financial data via APIs, fostering the development of novel applications and services that enhance property buying and selling processes. Furthermore, open banking’s provision of accurate and reliable financial data enables greater transparency for stakeholders, such as landlords, buyers, sellers, and renters, thus facilitating stronger relationships and enriching the customer experience.

The seamless integration of open banking with existing systems, such as accounting and customer relationship management (CRM) platforms, is pivotal for ensuring operational fluidity. Effective integration guarantees a continuity of data inputs and outputs, mitigating the risks of data duplication and inconsistencies, ultimately increasing data accuracy. By reducing errors associated with data handling, employee workloads can be lightened, and time and resources can be redirected to other areas of operations, thereby driving overall business profitability.

The disruptive potential of AI

AI seemingly has endless applications across a range of sectors, and property is no exception. However, is it the holy grail for business efficiency that it seems to be or instead simply hype? The answer is probably somewhere in-between. For businesses seeking a value-driven approach without being blinded by buzzwords there are innovative solutions that already exist to complement, but not replace, existing systems. For instance, by integrating AI with advanced property management platforms, property businesses can heighten the efficiency and speed of their tenant screening processes. AI can automate the analysis of crucial tenant information, constructing profiles based on rental eligibility. Additionally, AI integration with property management platforms can enable the automation of lease management and seamless tracking of property maintenance, streamlining operations.

Property businesses can leverage invoice scanning, in combination with AI, to collate diverse data such as the bank details of property sellers and tenants, payment due dates, and rent arrears to receive live, in-depth financial analytics. Upon receipt of invoice data, payments can be promptly initiated to sellers or tenants without the need for manual data entry, as all relevant information is seamlessly integrated into a comprehensive property management system. Against the uncertain economic backdrop, accessing AI-powered analysis of financial information in real time across your business portfolio can be key for fire-fighting potential resource squeezes. The benefits for businesses are obvious, as this approach circumvents the arduous and error-prone task of manual data entry, which often consumes valuable time and resources, while also allowing businesses to make up-to-date forecasts and capture new trends effortlessly.

Proptech technologies also offer valuable insights into property performance through real-time data analytics generated by AI, empowering businesses to make informed decisions. AI-generated data can extend reach, providing comprehensive market insights encompassing buying trends, pricing patterns, and risk assessment profiles, thereby opening new frontiers for investment opportunities. Such analytics, which traditionally need significant time and resources to research, are readily available to property owners, equipping them with the informed market knowledge required to diversify their portfolios.

The value of proptech

Leveraging proptech technologies enables businesses to alleviate the administrative burden of repetitive and time-consuming tasks, optimising resource allocation, and minimising, or even eliminating, physical paperwork, thereby enhancing security by eliminating paper trails.

Embracing proptech not only positions property businesses at the vanguard of innovation but also equips them with the tools necessary to adapt and thrive in an increasingly competitive landscape. Property businesses that seize these opportunities are poised to gain a substantial advantage in the market, ensuring long-term success and growth. Businesses would be wise to take note and unlock the boundless potential presented by proptech.

About the Author

Grant Chaplin is Managing Director at Grosvenor Systems. Founded in 1980, we developed our all-in-one property management and accounting software, Propman, to help overcome the challenges, complexities and inefficiencies of property management and transform through automation. As a dedicated property management system, Propman helps businesses become more efficient, easier to scale and provides peace of mind by making it easier to manage.

Featured image: ©Tierney