The impact of COVID-19 on the real estate industry | McKinsey

Taking the digital leap

Before the crisis, the real estate industry had been moving toward digitizing processes and creating digitally enabled services for tenants and users. Practically overnight, physical distancing and the lockdown of physical spaces have magnified the importance of digitization, particularly by measures such as tenant and customer experience.

Within residential real estate, players that have invested in digital sales and leasing processes—using virtual open houses and showings; augmented and virtual reality; and omnichannel, targeted, ad personalized sales—will more quickly allow their residents to find the right space for themselves.

When an operator may have to keep its amenity spaces closed for months, creating a differentiated experience will necessarily involve a suite of digital-first products and experiences: telehealth, on-demand delivery and concierge services, virtual communities, contactless access for residents, guests, and maintenance staff, and much more.

As more users adopt these digital-first products and services, users’ expectations will be raised, and players that provide a differentiated post-crisis experience will stay ahead of the curve. These digital offerings will pay dividends in the form of superior loyalty and the ability to create brand new revenue streams while better meeting the needs of tenants and end-users.

Sensative comment: Most of these digital-first products involve the efficient use of IoT technologies, well-integrated with legacy systems into a seamless stream of data. A challenge though can be the multiple incompatible environments caused by vendor lock-ins and different technologies of different ages in the multi-property portfolio. This is the reason behind Yggio, our IoT integration middleware platform, or operating system for Smart Buildings.

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