This is a statement that has been asked so many times over the past few years. You are told to get tech, be tech or perish.

But for some reason, that statement when put within the context of commercial real estate goes unheeded.

Why is there still so much resistance?

Why do you want to be the last one to have to change?

Ask yourself this simple question: Are you keeping up just to keep up or are you truly trying to use technology as an edge to win?

The cold hard fact is that one-third of the commercial real estate industry still runs off Microsoft Excel. Research shows us that there is not only a lack of innovation but also a lack of understanding of what innovation is and its potential impact on the commercial real estate industry.

This resistance to innovation may be a legacy issue related to the old guard of industry CEOs and CIOs. A generation that believed in spreadsheets and silos. The good news is that there’s a new breed of industry leaders taking the reins. This wave of young individuals is dedicated to raising service standards in commercial real estate. They are a part of a movement that sees a fundamental shift of power from the landlord to the tenant. And we all know that tenants are consumers who have come to expect more from their service providers. Only by investing in new technologies will commercial real estate begin to meet these expectations.

Until now, key players have often based their decisions on nothing more than speculation and gut-feel. But with the emergence of new legislation, competition, and adaptive use it is becoming imperative to shift towards data-driven decisions to support their asset and portfolio decision making. Armed with the right IT solutions, companies will be able to access the real value inherent in their data. The reality is that in this competitive environment, it would be risky for global leaders not to accelerate their investments into technological innovation.

You’ve no doubt already asked yourself how effectively your company is driving and adopting technology. Are there any gaps or opportunities in the way you use your data? Technological innovation has the power to reveal the most valuable insights. And these insights create a platform for ideas. And ideas can come from anywhere, while one individual may plant the seed of an idea, it is often only through collaboration that the idea forms into something truly valuable and actionable. This is not a race to the top but a race to change the way commercial real estate does business with technology innovation and collaboration like never before.

You may think you are adapting to the marketplace and the changes it inevitably brings.

How can you be sure?

What price is there to pay if you don’t?

Will you be around to count that if you don’t?

Duke Long

Duke LongDuke Long is a twenty-year veteran of commercial real estate. He is the broker/owner of The Duke Long Agency. He is also known for writing his strong opinions about all things CRE at www.dukelong.com. He has delivered numerous presentations and discussions about online CRE tech, marketing, data, and digital media. Indiana University allowed him to study real estate and the United States Air Force discharged him honorably.