Proptech presents a huge opportunity for those who work in the surveying industry, helping them raise the bar and improve efficiency. The less time surveyors have to spend on site collecting data and making notes – or in the office writing them up – the more clients they can visit and the higher their productivity levels. What’s more, proptech can reduce the risk of input errors, improving reporting accuracy and consistency.
There are still many businesses in the construction and surveying sector, however, that have still not adopted digital tools. GoReport’s CEO Anthony Walker led a piece of research for the RICS on the role and impact of proptech on surveying, which found that lack of knowledge and training was one of the key reasons preventing businesses from successfully implementing the latest digital reporting techniques. Cost and a lack of clarity of the benefits were other common obstacles.
So how can surveying practices make the most of the new technology that is now available and overcome any barriers to adoption?
Communicate the benefits
Change is often resisted by employees; management will need to work hard to engage people and make sure everyone is on board when new systems, processes and tech is introduced. Be sure to share the reasons for choosing the technology that is being introduced and the benefits to the business.
Invest in training
Many companies believe that it is enough to invest in the technology itself. When considering your proptech solution, find out what training and ongoing support is available from the software company and make sure you choose a product that is easy to use, like GoReport. Even if initial training is provided, you will still need to invest time to make sure staff can familiarise themselves with the technology, try it out and ask any questions. They need to feel confident with the new systems and processes if they are to get the most out of it and reap the productivity benefits.
Appoint a proptech champion
If there is someone in your organisation who is a tech aficionado, why not make them your proptech champion? It will be their job to engage colleagues, support new users and test the software in real life scenarios, providing valuable feedback along the way. When doing this, make sure your proptech champion is incentivised in some way. This might mean taking them off fee earning duties for a set number of hours a week to explore the technology or offering bonuses.
It is easier to reach agreement over investment in proptech if an agreed review mechanism is put in place. Map the adoption journey, master one type of survey first before moving onto others and allow staff time to learn. Encourage feedback so that tweaks can be made to improve the processes and schedule regular audits to make sure it is being used properly and is having the desired outcome.
Once your proptech solution is in place and you are noticing the benefits, share those results with your team. If anyone is still finding it hard to adapt to the new ways of working, this kind of knowledge will give them the boost they need to keep going.