Last week, October Research released Title Technology: Special Report. The issue collects responses from across the industry on applications of the latest technology. The report covers topics ranging from how technology is forging process efficiencies to how new tools are aiding the hiring process and improving data security.
Qualia CEO, Nate Baker, contributed his thoughts about how technology is driving process efficiencies, yet also warned that too many technology tools can have the opposite effect. “A lot of new options have come about that attempt to solve a single problem for a single audience,” he said. “Increasing efficiency through technology isn’t merely about adopting many different new technologies; it’s about adopting the right technology.”
Nate added that end-to-end platforms are the best investment. Instead of jumping from system to system to complete a series of tasks, end-to-end platforms connect everyone in the real estate ecosystem to one system of record for seamless, efficient, and secure transaction management.
The Downfalls of Too Many Different Technology Tools
On-premise title & escrow software solutions were the starting ground for digital transaction management some 20 years ago. Since then, new add-ons and plugins have come about to enhance the base software functionality and provide solutions for each audience involved in the real estate transaction. There are a few issues with this patchwork approach:
- Overwhelming and inefficient: Investing in multiple single-audience technology solutions results in a disjointed system that can create unnecessary stress. To complete a single task or series of tasks, an employee must understand the value each tool provides (and there’s often overlap), remember login credentials for each tool, and navigate different user interfaces. Undoubtedly, this causes overwhelm and eventually an overall resistance to technology.
- Escalating costs: Investing in multiple single-purpose technology tools inevitably results in higher costs. Most technology providers offer seat-based subscriptions; this means that as your team grows, so the expenses for each platform you use. Additionally, maintenance requirements (e.g. calling support centers or fixing bugs independently) for each plugin and add-on can result in productivity losses and maintenance costs over time.
- Technology tools that don’t “talk” to each other: Real-time transaction management requires tools that seamlessly work together. When technology is segregated based on who you are communicating with, it silos information exchange and causes redundant data entry. Additionally, when tools do not “talk” to one another, highly-sensitive information can fall through the cracks of the fractured communication system, resulting in vulnerabilities that cyber criminals can prey on.
Evaluating Your Tech Tool Kit
The real estate industry is undergoing a significant transition from pen-and-paper to digital processes. As a result, new technology solutions are popping up frequently promising productivity improvements. With so much noise, it’s hard to decipher which tools and technology will drive real business value. Below are a few considerations to keep in mind when examining technology options.
Invest in end-to-end platforms that streamline entire workflows without interruption
End-to-end platforms can streamline entire workflows, eliminating the piecemeal approach of plugins and add-ons. Additionally, workflow automation eliminates repeatable business tasks, minimizing room for error while also increasing overall efficiency. Where once processors would spend hours rekeying information across multiple forms and files, they can now spend their energy collaborating in a more productive way.
Look for vendors that provide reliable integration with other platforms
A single system of record for real-time transaction management enables efficiencies in client communication and information exchange. Cloud-based technology advancements provide seamless, secure exchanges of information between parties, resulting in an improved closing experience for the end-consumer and efficiencies across the board.
The right technology stack empowers people to better serve their clients
Automation and other tech advancements are not designed to replace humans, but rather to enable them to work more efficiently by eliminating redundant, time-intensive tasks. Technology integrations should help eliminate busy work so employees can focus their energy on client management, problem-solving, and other revenue-generating tasks.