Why did you decide to upskill yourself?
Swee Wan: In 2019, I attended Facebook marketing and social branding courses as I realised that estate agency work was changing with the pervasive use of social media. Property transaction processes were increasingly becoming more digitalised. During the COVID-19 pandemic, I got the chance to put some of these skills into practice by working on video and zoom presentations. These allowed me to showcase projects to clients even though we could not conduct physical viewings.
Christopher: It is great that technology is helping to make my work a lot more efficient and convenient as compared to my early years. I used to have to scroll through listings on print media and contact the leads, which was very time consuming and laborious. Therefore, I embrace any opportunity that would help to make my work more productive and efficient. It also helps that my division leaders encourage us to adopt technology to be more effective and productive.
Did you find it challenging to use digital tools at the beginning? How did you overcome this?
Swee Wan: I did find it challenging at first. However, ERA provided us with a lot of online training and support, which I personally found very helpful.
Christopher: It was definitely a slow learning process as I was not familiar with some of the IT terms and applications. But thankfully, the leaders and trainers were very helpful and patient.
What are some of the tech/digital tools that you are using now? How has using them benefitted you and your clients?
Swee Wan: Currently, I use ERA apps like SALES+, ERAPro and iERA, which provide analysis, financial calculations, and comparisons between the various property development projects. This gives our clients much quicker and easier access to critical information that they would need to make informed decisions about their next home purchase. Apart from these, social media platforms such as Facebook and Instagram are very useful for marketing as they allow us to extend our network and reach more people than what was previously possible.
Christopher: In addition to search engine optimisation platforms, I also use online data mining resources from SRX and Huttons. These help me to churn out data and comparative analysis quickly, which is a major convenience for me. Video and digital photography services also help me to improve the marketing performance of my property listings.
What other types of tech/digital tools do you hope to learn in future? Why do you think these are important for RESs?
Swee Wan: The digital world is changing rapidly, and I hope to keep up with the shift towards newer social media applications like Instagram and even TikTok. Each app is favoured by a different segment of the population, and it is important to be able to reach a wide and diverse audience.
Christopher: Personally, I have yet to tap on some data churning resources which are available in my agency resource and library. I intend to do so this year.
Any words of advice or encouragement for fellow RESs like yourself on how they can embrace digitalisation for greater productivity and professionalism?
Swee Wan: Old dogs can learn new tricks - it may take a bit more effort, but I truly believe that learning is a lifelong process and that it is always worthwhile to stay relevant and keep abreast of the latest technology.
Christopher: Change is good. Dare to try new things. Embrace lifelong learning practices to keep yourself alert and relevant.