By now, we all know about PropTech, we all have seen new technologies rising and we can see the impact those could have on the industry. Real estate is the largest asset class in the world – worth more than all stocks and bonds combined. But yet, it is one of the last to adopt technologies. 


Different ways of proceeding digitalization


It is obvious that the impact of PropTech will be steady and continuous. But how long will it take to take new technologies into use? What is the best practice when it comes to Data integration, Interfaces and to optimize processes.

Union Investment has just published a new study about the status of digital transformation as the result of a survey among 150 real estate investors in Germany, France, and the UK.

Institutional real estate investors in Europe are proceeding digitalization in a very different way and it divides currently the industry into two groups. The larger one of 63 percent has already made significant progress in changing technologies and work. The smaller group of 36 percent is still working on initial concepts or has not even integrated digitization into its business strategy.


Only one out of five has applied a wide digital strategy


As the results of the survey clearly point out, the group of innovation leaders in the real estate industry is quite small. Only about one out of five companies have already implemented their digital strategy largely. With a share of 41 percent, the majority of respondents are in a middle stage, meaning first concepts and prototypes were put into action. But here also much remains to be done for the future in order to achieve a long-lasting an overall strategy. 

Fact is, the change is happening: because there is no way around it. As the technologies we are working with are changing, so do also our customer’s expectations.

What the survey also revealed is that every fifth company has not gotten yet involved in digitizing its business, but started planning initial concepts and prototypes. In 16 percent of respondents, digitalization is strategically not considered.


Optimization of standardized processes and interfaces most important


The optimization of standardized processes and interfaces hits the top of the list of digital strategies and is for 84 percent of European real estate investors the most important focus. 

The same applies to the 82 percent seeing improvement in IT security and data protection as nearly equally important. The optimization of customer communication is for many companies a process to prioritize.

Also, the human factor and the cultural change is something that needs to be taken special care of.  80 percent of respondents say that the digital transformation in the minds of employees must continue to be driven forward. Another 74 percent designate the harmonization of the data landscape as a priority of their strategy.


On behalf of Union Investment, the market research institute Ipsos surveyed a total of 150 property companies and institutional real estate investors in Germany, (n = 60), France (n = 55) and the United Kingdom (n = 35) between May and July 2019.


Further information at Union Investments media center here



Where do you see yourself on this digital journey? We have been working with various customers throughout 5 different countries to make the change happen. 

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