Apps designed to improve Harcourts Real Estate agents productivity - and the customer experience - have won recognition from Apple.
The technology giant has produced a video and business case study about Harcourts’ iPad and iPhone app – an accolade reserved for companies developing ‘the most cutting edge business solutions’ using Apple technology. The case study is running on Apple’s global website.
Harcourts says it is the first ANZ based global company, and the first real estate business, to receive the Apple recognition.
Hayden Duncan, Harcourts New Zealand chief executive, says innovation with mobile technology is a critical factor for the company to drive efficiency for agents and customer service for clients.
The company has produced three custom apps: eOne helps agents manage and access information about properties and contacts; eCampaign helps agents to create a fully customisable marketing plan, allowing an agent to mock up marketing options on their iPad over a cup of tea with a client; and eInspect handles property inspections and reports.
“We’re changing the playing field of the real estate industry by becoming more agile and responsive to clients’ needs,” Duncan says. “We can deliver what they need faster and more effectively which gives us a competitive edge and further establishes our brand as a leader in innovation.
The custom suite of apps was developed in Australia, and Duncan says they have ‘completely transformed’ the way agents do business in New Zealand.
“By nature real estate is a mobile business. Agents are on the road, meeting clients, inspecting properties and showing homes. The apps give our agents instant access to the tools they require to do their job effectively in the field.”
Duncan says agents now have access to an unprecedented level of information, including detailed client and buyer information, real time sale and sold property data, thrid party industry data sources and an array of marketing products, wherever they are.
Duncan says using the power of iOS is, in some instances, saving agents ‘hundreds’ of hours a year.
He cites property management as an example.
“A property manager inspects 100 properties every quarter. One average inspection report requires 30-45 minutes of coordinating photos and paperwork in the office.
“With Harcourts’ eInspect app, photos and notes can be merged to produce the report on their iPad at the property, in minutes. The reduction in total time spent to report on each property saves around 50 hours per quarter,” Duncan says.
“This is significant for the productivity and profitability of our members’ businesses when thousands of dollars can be re-directed into providing a better level of service for our landlords and tenants and investing in professional development for employees.”