Digitization in the real estate industry
Ever since COVID-19 forced every industry to adopt digital technologies to sustain, it has become a normal now. All industries are under more pressure than ever to reinvent themselves through digital transformation.
The state of digitization is different for different companies and varies from industry to industry. Prior to this point, digital technologies were adopted by progressive companies to make their products smarter, to get ahead of competition, or dramatically improve the operational efficiency of business processes. Information-intensive industries naturally tend to invest more in digitization to maintain their competitive advantage. Of all the industries, real estate has been rather a late adopter of digitization due to various factors. Digital technologies like virtual reality and augmented reality made their way into the real estate industry and transformed how properties are sold, leased and managed, and enhanced virtual home tours and 3D walkthroughs.
Payments towards booking and purchasing of apartments became contactless or could be completed through payment gateways, pushing cheques and cards out the window. Customer interactions and engagement are moving from traditional channels like telephone/ GSM, websites, and customer portals, to mobile apps, bots (aka chat bots/ cognitive assistants), and customer engagement platforms built on customer data platforms. For example, Orion Mall engages with mall visitors through a WhatsApp bot and caters to about 100 queries a day.
Commercial real estate management became highly digitized with asset management aided by centralized dashboards, providing insights into usage patterns, occupancy, rentals, electricity/generator, air conditioning, water usage, maintenance, safety, security and any other charges. Owners are moving in the direction of providing such digitized tools.
Construction is getting smarter, through adoption of 3D model-based approaches that give architecture, engineering and construction an edge over traditional construction methods. BIM (Building Information Modelling) is a set of tools, methods, and practices to plan, design, construct and manage buildings and assets more efficiently. BIM enables streamlining of work flows, improving communication, facilitating cooperation and tremendously improving design processes, especially avoiding the clash detection of MEP services before they become a rework during construction.
Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs /drones) are entering the real estate industry to monitor progress and through technologies like visualization, AI/ML create orthomosaic maps of construction sites. Such maps, with superimposed drawings, could identify deviations as low as one centimetre (orthomosaic is a high-definition and high-resolution picture composed by combining multiple pictures).
Mobile apps are increasingly finding their way into the toolkit of construction engineers, enhancing collaboration, communication as well as coordination. One such example is QwikSpec, which was used by Brigade, and is now being reintroduced to unify unit handover process. Another example is HUVIAiR Technologies which conducts drone-based surveys and progress maps at Brigade Cornerstone Utopia, that employs AI/ML to superimpose CAD drawings on a constructed structure.
- Gupta Boda
Head-Digital & IT Systems
We have started the next leg of our digital journey, which we began in 2009 with our programme – Sampoorna Parivartan. This initiative has laid the groundwork for phase two – Sampoorna Parivartan 2.0 x Katalyze. We are continually expanding the capacity of our technology team as well as dedicating a core group of business team members to identify, streamline and digitize our work, with a keen focus on:.