The IMS team traveled to San Diego last week for the IMN – Real Estate CFO & COO Forum. We always enjoy exhibiting at IMN conferences because the attendees represent some of the best groups in real estate. We walked away with a lot of great new relationships and learned some things while attending various industry panel discussions. Our most intriguing takeaway was the noticeable increase in buzz around technology. Being a technology company ourselves that has attended various IMN conferences, we love seeing the way commercial real estate firms are beginning to embrace the idea of how technology can help them scale their businesses.
While at the event, our very own Ron Rossi, VP of Analytics, participated in a panel that examined the topic of finding the right software solution for your real estate firm’s needs. Ray Haarstick, CEO of Relevant Equity Systems, moderated a panel that was composed of VPs, CEOs, CFOs, and COOs from both technology companies and real estate firms. The group told stories about their experiences with searching for technology solutions and provided tips to those who might be looking to start utilizing tech in the future.
The conversation spanned topics that included current pain points software is solving today, things that may prevent a firm from employing a software based solution, what to look for during the selection process, and what a firm should know before implementation. The makeup of the panel, which consisted of software executives and real estate professionals, provided a well-balanced dynamic between seasoned technology buyers and sellers.
Ron spoke in detail about the issues caused by disparate systems and the industry’s need for a central repository. Most firms are still using Excel and other disconnected products to manage functions of their businesses like complex waterfall calculations. Ron also went over a few items he looks at when reviewing a software solution. He recommends asking for a detailed overview of the onboarding process. He also makes sure to ask about the security of data and the type of encryption used for cloud hosted solutions.
Overall, San Diego and the IMN – Real Estate CFO & COO Forum provided a wonderful setting for networking and learning. We are always excited to exhibit and participate in events like this. Our next stop is San Francisco on June 8th to partake in CRE//Tech Intersect.