How To Prepare Your Agency for a Lockdown

COVID-19, Industry News, Journal, Property Management, Sales,  Principals,  Property Managers,  Salespeople

With last week’s lockdown event in Brisbane taking us all by surprise, there’s never been a better time to ensure your agency is prepared if the circumstance occurs again. We have the top lockdown preparation tips to ensure your operations aren’t heavily affected.

Safe and Secure Remote Working

One of the most important things to consider in your lockdown preparation plans is your team’s ability to seamlessly and efficiently operate as if you were in the office. Due to the sensitive nature of real estate operations, it is vital that your documentation and communications are kept secure. Ensure that your IT teams have set up safe remote working environment for all staff.

Consider obtaining a cloud-based storage system for document circulation. Choose one system for all employees to use, such as Google Drive, OneDrive or Dropbox. This will ensure there is only one space where your company’s documents are hosted.

Online Forms and Contracts

As a real estate professional, it’s important that contracts and forms are delivered swiftly and professionally.

Gone are the days of handwritten contracts and forms. RealWorks is an online tool that stores your documents digitally. Most forms in RealWorks can be executed using DocuSign, and Property Managers can access One Touch Execution ™  for their tenancy agreements. This will allow you to create forms and contracts centrally and it enables you to share links; keeping paperwork in one central location, regardless of who in your team needs to access it.

Believe it or not, appraisals can also be drafted virtually, using tools such as Proposal Point, with a Zoom or Skype for Business call to walk the vendor through the proposal.

Digital Marketing

With recent evolution of property technology and restrictions encountered during the COVID-19 pandemic, there has never been a more appropriate time to adapt to modern, digital marketing methods.

With lockdown measures and restrictions in place, face-to-face meetings are few and far between. Instead, host your marketing communications in a digital space, embracing the use of social media and content marketing. Start listing all of your available properties on social media, curate a weekly newsletter and ensure to constantly engage with your digital audience.

The good thing about digital marketing is the availability of data. In your lockdown preparations, try creating a Facebook campaign for one of your best listings. You’ll be able to target the advertisement at the exact demographic you are looking for.

Virtual Tours and Inspections

To avoid being left in the dark without any visuals of a property that is to be listed on the market on day two of lockdown, ensure to invest in a virtual tour tool. Or at a minimum, invest in exceptional photography.

Virtual tours are a great way to market the property to a large audience, without having to conduct separate inspections and/ or an open home. This helps you navigate operations throughout restrictions as well as on an average day, saving you time as less people will feel the need to physically attend a property.

Property managers can also conduct inspections through the use of virtual tours, assisting with restriction compliance and general time saving operations.

At the very least, invest in quality photography and/ or videography of your listings to prepare for lockdown. With smart tools such as Virtual Tours Creator, agents can conduct virtual tours by piecing together photographs taken with their own phone.

Digital Team Environment

As well as being safe and secure, digital operations must also be effective for teams. Thankfully, there are many platforms and tools available to professionals that make this lockdown preparation tip seamless.

Run meetings through online platforms such as Zoom, Skype for Business or Microsoft Teams. Try and limit the company to one platform that feeds into your email system, to avoid meeting conflicts and to reduce the risk of outsider hacking. These can also be used to host webinars or all staff meetings, with screen sharing capability and the option to record.

Team projects can also be managed digitally, removing the need for that giant Kanban board stuck on the wall in your office. Move your workflows to an online project management platform such as Monday, Microsoft Planner, Trello or Asana that can be accessed from anywhere.

 

For more information on technology solutions available to real estate professionals, access our Coronavirus Technology Solutions toolkit. Looking for even more assistance? Join the REIQ family for access to help and advice whenever you need it.

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