Is Your Back Office Management Working For You Or Costing You Time?

Posted by Jocelynne Haslett on 10/25/17 7:43 AM
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Have you ever marveled at the time saved by a new route to work or a brand-new tech tool that’s streamlining your day? Did you wonder at the time why you didn’t make a change sooner?

Like most business-owners, you probably have strategies and techniques you’ve been using for years. You know they work, and you might not have considered tweaking or changing them since implementation -- but that’s like refusing to drive on the just-constructed highway that cuts half an hour off your commute just because it’s not the road you’ve always taken.

This is pervasive in the brokerage business, where the daily administration and regular troubleshooting can easily consume your entire day, leaving no room for exploring new tools or growing your business.

Unfortunately, if you aren’t evaluating what you’re doing on a semi-regular basis to look for efficiencies, you’re missing an opportunity. What are your competitors doing that’s saving them time -- and how long will it take before that saved time becomes a marketplace advantage?

The low-hanging fruit

One of the biggest time-consumers in any brokerage is back office administration. From managing transactions to calculating commissions and team fees to handling your agent billing to maintaining your customer management system (CMS), there’s a ton of work brokers must do behind the scenes to keep their businesses running.

If you can spend less time working in your business,
that translates to more time you can devote to working on your business.

So, if your back office management software is outdated or clunky, requiring duplicative data entry across multiple platforms for each transaction, you’re wasting a ton of time -- but these aren’t tasks you can ignore. They’re the lifeblood of your brokerage.

That means you need to make sure that your back office solution is the most efficient, streamlined solution available. If you can spend less time working in your business, that translates to more time you can devote to working on your business.

What makes an efficient brokerage back office platform?

With dozens of options available for back office management, how do you pick the best one for your business?

There are a few things you should be looking for in any solution you pick. If the platform being pitched doesn’t have these attributes, then be wary -- you might be considering a switch to a product that’s not any better than what you’re currently using.

The good news is, not all back office solutions are created equal -- you can find something that will save you the time you crave ... just look for these three things.

  1. Integrations. One of the biggest brokerage time-wasters -- and the place where there’s a huge opportunity for errors -- is duplicating the data you’re putting in your CMS, your transaction management platform, your listing management suite and any other area where you might need to type the same thing over and over (and over).

Choosing a platform that integrates with others means you only need to enter the data (and check it for accuracy) once; then it will be populated to every other tool you use. Like magic!

The iBroker product integrates with QuickBooks Online, SkySlope, dotloop and other popular tools that brokers use to run their business. That means a streamlined workflow for administrators saving valuable time that could be redirected to growth-supporting tasks.

  1. Training. When there’s robust training available for the product -- whether in-person or online -- then you have a lot more flexibility when it comes to hiring the right administrator for your business. Make yourself secure in the knowledge that whomever you hire will have a wealth of resources to tap if he doesn’t understand a specific task or if she gets stuck on something. You’ll also know where to send any new hires to train up if you lose an employee and have to hire a replacement.

That knowledge frees you up to hand over the back office administration to a trustworthy staff member and spend your own time working on strategic planning, hiring and training or another activity that will help propel your brokerage toward growth and success.

So, make sure you ask your vendor about the available training and demos. A platform like iBroker offers a full library of training videos to tap when they need to learn something new or when you’ve got a recent hire on your hands.

iBroker offers a full library of training videos to tap when you need to learn something new or have a new hire. 

  1. Ease of use. There’s nothing more painful than navigating a nest of spreadsheets or trying to operate some clunky software that looks like it was designed in the late ’90s. Those platforms are hard for most people to use -- but if you were hoping to plop a digital native down in front of your software and expect them to figure it out, you’re in for a sorry surprise.

Ideally, you’ll find a platform that’s clean and intuitive, which won’t take ages to learn and doesn’t need an expert to operate. Software packages like iBroker have that ease of use built in and are good choices for when you don’t want to sacrifice function and usability for price -- because you won’t have to; the platform offers scalable pricing that grows with your brokerage.

If you’ve been driving the same back office management tool for a few years, then it might be time to take some new software for a spin and see how much time it saves you. You could be in for a pleasant surprise!


For more information, visit goibroker.com or call 1.833.827.6537

 

Topics: Integration, Office Management, Real Estate Software, back office, opportunity cost, transaction management, agent management