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How Third-Party Managers Can Use Tech And Data As A Competitive Advantage

Photo by Ilya Pavlov on Unsplash

Building owners have choices when it comes to property management — they can keep it in-house or hire a full-service real estate firm for these services. If you’re going with a third-party manager, how can you be sure they’re choosing the right partner for their needs?

Third-party providers are up against stiff competition to win clients. To gain a competitive advantage, they need to be able to act quickly and add valuable services. They need to manage and think like an owner, anticipating their needs to stay a step ahead and preemptively provide proof that a building is operating successfully. By utilizing tools to make smarter business decisions, third-party managers provide and showcase value across the board — to their client (the owner), internally to their teams and to the occupants.

Technology advancements mean that complex building operations can be streamlined and addressed via one platform that allows for visibility and impactful insights that manual processes simply can’t provide.

One example of a third-party manager leveraging technology correctly to get ahead is Thalhimer, a Cushman & Wakefield affiliate. As a regional third-party management company located in Virginia and the mid-Atlantic area, Thalhimer is always looking to diff erentiate itself and think like an owner in order to win property management contracts and retain the ones it already has.

When submitting a request for proposal (RFP), every firm promises timely rent collection, top vendor relationships and more. But by off ering real-time access to data, monthly service and tenant satisfaction reports, Thalhimer can off er value other firms can’t.

As the famous American engineer, statistician and thinker W. Edwards Deming once said, “Without data, you’re just another person with an opinion.” If owners become used to seeing true, tangible results via reporting and data gleaned from a technology platform, they might not rely on their gut or shared history, opening up opportunities for other managers to win business. Data doesn’t lie, and being able to point to high tenant satisfaction and quick response rates can help third-party property managers to set themselves apart.

Property owners value transparency and look to track every piece of their buildings that they can. The true measure of success is how well and efficiently a building is operating and how happy the occupants ultimately are because of this. Property managers need to prove their success track record and that they operate at an optimal level by centralizing workflows. The only true way to gauge this is through data-driven processes to capture historic data to make better-informed decisions repeatedly.

By implementing a commercial real estate (CRE) technology platform that can work for them in the background, third-party property managers can constantly monitor building operations. With these holistic systems, it’s easy for engineers to manage their workload, prioritize tasks and ensure work orders aren’t neglected.

The right CRE technology should also be able to connect property management teams with all moving pieces in a single unified place. Everything from occupant services and emergency procedures to maintenance issues and communications can be leveraged from one platform much more quickly than manual processes or several siloed systems.

Showcasing real-time visibility and insight into a portfolio is key. If a third-party provider can prove these capabilities through undisputable data to a potential client, they can edge out the competition.

Daniel Cozza
Building Engines
33 Arch Street #3200
Boston, MA 02110 USA
dcozza@buildingengines.com