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The real estate industry is still making progress with its digital transformation. Challenges remain, however, with full-scale adoption of digital technology still some way off.

In its third year, the annual KPMG Global PropTech survey looks at the progress made in the real estate industry’s relationship with technology over the past year. We examine the differences between regions, industry sub-sectors and stages of the property cycle, and we explore the areas in which attitudes and practices may need to change. We also focus on the crucial questions of who has responsibility for advancing the digital agenda and whether companies have the talent in place to deliver the job.

All in all, the developments of the past year are encouraging. Property companies are increasing their engagement with digital, and many companies are taking digital developments in their stride. Brokers and advisors, in particular, are at the forefront of the technological revolution, with automation and digitalisation playing a growing part in their day-to-day operations. 

At the same time as they embrace digital transformation, companies are putting more emphasis on data. They are increasingly keen to explore the ways in which it can revolutionise their operations and – importantly – improve the experience of their customers.

The digital revolution brings challenges, of course. Cyber security is an issue of rapidly growing importance – an issue that real estate companies are increasingly acknowledging. In the survey findings, we detect a new realism about cyber-security readiness. Unsurprisingly, the companies that are most advanced in their digital strategies are also the companies that are putting the most effort into their cyber defences. That underscores a crucial point: like the other aspects of digital transformation, cyber security provides an opportunity for forward-thinking companies to differentiate themselves from their peers. 

Key findings from the 2019 survey

  • 58% of real estate companies have a digital strategy in place, up from 52% in both 2018 and 2019.
  • 95% of real estate companies have someone responsible for leading digital transformation and innovation. In 62% of cases, this is a senior employee, however, in 65% of cases, it isn’t a digital or technology specialist. 
  • 40% of digital leaders come from a real estate, construction or finance background.
  • Only 25% of respondents have a well-established data strategy that enables the capture and analysis of the right datasets. 
  • 64% of real estate companies have some form of Property-as-a-Service across their portfolio with a further 13% considering it.

For more information, download our report: