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What is Information Mobility and How Does it Affect Commercial Real Estate?

Re-Leased 16 April 2019

Information mobility is a term used to describe the way that information can be accessed from anywhere and from any device. In other terms, information mobility relates to the ability of workers to do so remotely on the same business tasks they can perform at their primary work stations.

Information mobility is typically part of business ethos that’s agile, lean and fully invested in technology as the driving force behind a business. With an increasing investment in global PropTech companies, information mobility has become a pervasive term in the commercial real estate space.

Information mobility is made possible by cloud-based software platforms, mobile devices and (of course) internet connectivity. Information mobility has made businesses become more mobile, agile and lean in their processes, which has allowed for teams to grow at a far more rapid pace than previously thought possible. And as for the ceiling of commercial real estate portfolio growth, the trajectory is north and it’s only getting more support from modern property technology, and global PropTech investors.

For commercial real estate investors and commercial property professionals alike, having the resources in place to untether their day-to-day tasks from their primary work stations is monumental: from a working environment flexibility perspective, information mobility is helping the commercial real estate (CRE) industry’s finest property management collectives turn heads through increased efforts to innovate and invest in game-changing PropTech solutions.

The world is changing and the desire to access information remotely is growing rapidly...

In an industry report that covers the theme that many commercial property companies still underestimate the impact of technology, we are starting to see that the common roadblock to embracing technology among many industry decision makers is that they believe because their existing systems work that it’s ‘good enough’.

This can be a problematic way of thinking because it undervalues the importance of innovation and its impact on business growth – both in terms of scaling a portfolio and also internal property management (and investor) groups, not to mention the effects on the wider talent pool of prospective commercial real estate workers, too.

The biggest technological disruptor in the workplace still remains the increasing desire to work somewhere other than the office, but having a primary work station is still something that has retained its value among tenants and occupiers of commercial real estate.

So while commercial landlords have to keep up with the pace of change, it’s actually their investments in their buildings to make them smarter spaces that can help to draw tenants back into the office – technology advancements aren’t going away, so office space investors need to move quickly with their investment opportunities to ensure they’re providing the spaces of today.

How can the dual efforts of enabling information mobility and investment in properties bring positive outcomes?

Well, this is made possible by investing in PropTechs and cloud-based platforms that bring commercial landlords into an environment (and mindset) that is strongly tech-first. Many commercial real estate asset classes have been impacted by technology and cloud-based innovation including offices, industrial hubs, shopping centres, etc. All main subsections of commercial real estate have felt the effects of technological change, and ultimately the market is far better off when they invest in an infrastructure that supports information mobility.

With work now done by professionals on more mobile devices than ever, the roadmap for their day-to-day is no longer done so in a straight line. In an industry report on the paradigm shift in commercial real estate, 75% of people surveyed said that mobile technology is the biggest trend in changing the way the industry does business.

In terms of commercial property tasks specifically, mobile and cloud-based software tools are having a profound impact on the way transactions take place by improving the collection, management and review of data, and by enhancing the ability to collaborate and share this information with all stakeholders.

While commercial real estate will always ultimately be quote-un-quote people business, it still is and will always be. But the pervasiveness of technology and mobile applications only means that clients can be served faster and business can be done smarter, all without having to be buried (and impeded) by administrative tasks that historically could only be conducted at the office.

Information mobility has made way for an unrestricted commercial real estate industry and that is an exciting reality for global investors.

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