“The battlefield is a scene of constant chaos. The winner will be the one who controls that chaos, both his own and the enemies.” — Napoleon Bonaparte
Although not a real battlefield, CRE is none the less an environment where change is constant and chaos is the standard.
Disrupting technologies are revolutionizing consumer’s desires and demands at the speed of imagination. What was ‘pie in the sky’ is now a ‘cloud’ full of technology with changes so extreme and fast that we now call them ‘things’ as in the Internet of Things (IoT). The IoT, a world where communications are constant resulting in perpetual change.
We’ve heard and read about the highly urbanized millennial’s workspace environments and how they are changing corporate structures. In fact, there are large corporations beginning to reassess their need for long-term leases in favor of more dynamic work environments that swiftly and economically adjust to changing workflows and business processes based on their IoT.
There are a variety of companies that service this growing niche with names like Desks Near Me, Liquid Space, and WeWork. These pliable workspace businesses not only offer a space that meets a client’s specific need at that time, they are collaborating with complementary organizations like hotels, staffing agencies and other real estate centric organizations to optimize that business enterprise.
Keep in mind that these collaborative work spaces are most often in high transit areas. Combine that with the growing impact of driverless cars and the value of office parking is highly compromised.
The commercial real estate market is moving to information aggregators offering CRE owners the opportunity to participate in pervasive property data streaming across mobile platforms to the end users. CRE owners also need to create new hybrid business processes and pricing models reflecting the pay-for-the-opportunity environment and capturing customized premiums. Evaluation models will need to move from predictable long term income to dynamic cash flow facilities.
So what does the future hold for the commercial realtor? Plenty!
On the downside, information aggregators and the IoT will provide real time access to the full spectrum of real estate opportunities making the realtor’s access to proprietary and cumbersome proprietary data valueless.
On the upside, IoT technology can open up highly underserved and growing, dynamic markets for the savvy CRE practitioner who is willing to move from a transactional operation to a collaborative, consulting enterprise.
The opportunities to recapitalize one’s CRE knowledge and experience into a value added service are tremendous. The business focus will become relationship sustainability combined with a borderline obsession with technology and a keen eye on the evolving horizons creating solutions we didn’t know existed.