BLUE SPRINGS, MO—Xceligent Advisory Boards are open forum meetings, where the top leasing professionals in specific submarkets quarterly validate, correct and update commercial real estate transactions; changes in occupancy; rental rates, vacancy rates, and development activity. “We want to find out ‘who‘ and ‘when,‘” said Brent Hansen, director of listing & tenant research at Xceligent.
These meetings operate under an agreed upon set of geographic parameters and minimum building class thresholds. Xceligent is able to refine the statistics based upon Advisory Board members’ feedback, allowing brokers, developers, and owners in the market to gain critical insight into market conditions, trends, and projections. This amounts to the most transparent and accurate market statistics available and allows business leaders to make critical decisions with confidence.
An industry resistant to change is ripe for disruption and innovation. Barriers to progress have been cemented by the lack of information shared resulting in mistrust, inaccurate data and a bottleneck to production. Xceligent’s advent of Advisory Boards, a relatively new concept to the commercial real estate industry, is redefining how real estate information is consumed, interpreted, and communicated.
Dixson: What challenges do commercial brokers face that can be addressed by the advent of Xceligent Advisory Boards?
Hansen: The lack of information aggregation and sharing are some of the largest obstacles facing CRE brokers today. Advisory Boards are facilitating transactional transparency by breaking down walls through a mutual partnership between Xceligent and the top brokers. Gaining timely access to information can drastically assist all parties involved—from the broker to the client. The movement toward transparency is long overdue and, while new to commercial real estate, is not a new idea in other industries. We have seen this transformational effort take effect in the financial market, where key investment data was controlled by a few major players, but is now broadly available and transparent. The Advisory Boards have become the bridges paving the way to easier data sharing and better decision-making. The path now being traveled by many Advisory Board members is driven by the value gained, no matter if it is to buy or lease a property, they feel the information should be shared openly and freely to assist the brokers make a more informed, educated decision.
Dixson: How have commercial real estate professionals nationally responded to the growing impact of Advisory Boards?
Hansen: There has been nothing but positive feedback because of Xceligent Advisory Board’s ability to provide viable statistical reports used by member brokers to equip their offices to better identify market conditions, trends, and projections leading to better efficiencies. The overall positive response throughout the industry has been further advanced by the overwhelming success experienced by brokers using these refined reports and statistics. Commercial real estate brokers are some of the busiest people on the planet, and, therefore, have a built-in skepticism to any demand of their time that isn’t directly related to closing deals. But Advisory Board members are eager to attend and participate at the meetings because they quickly realize the value of the data being received.
THE THREE KEY LESSONS
Dixson: What are three key lessons learned by Xceligent’s creation of Advisory Boards and its partnership with the members?
Hansen: As Xceligent has grown with the development of the Advisory Boards, we have learned some important truths. Brokers want a trusted partner with trusted information. It cannot be overstated how verified data helps brokers operate smoothly. Secondly, brokers are eager to remove some of the transaction complexities clogging the process of closing deals. The Advisory Boards are revealing areas to improve the process for concluding transactions in areas of legal requirements, customer service demands and other related issues. Finally, Xceligent has seen the value of the Advisory Board’s role in shaping how brokers remain competitive and work together to safeguard the industry from economic ups and downs.
The commercial real estate industry appears ripe for change after decades of an inefficient relationship-driven model. How can Advisory Boards help forge necessary changes?
The Advisory Board members are some of the most influential brokers receiving valuable real estate information which enables them to process better transactions. The bottom line is about closing deals. The simpler the process, the better. Xceligent is one of many CRE information tech companies providing brokers with tools to make these transactions easier to track, audit and execute. This open exchange of information during the Advisory Board meetings has significantly facilitated the often complicated real estate transactional process. The information dam built over time is being demolished so that decisions are based on a complete evaluation of data.
Dixson: As new Advisory Boards form and continue to evolve, how can we expect to profit from their growth and development?
Hansen: The biggest advantage gained from the Advisory Board meetings is earned trust. We can’t show up and just be a cheaper research provider; we must show up and be better. As technology continues to infiltrate the industry, Xceligent is in the forefront, working diligently to improve the information-gathering and reporting processes. These partnerships, built on trust, are the driving force behind the continued pursuit of excellence in data gathering and data sharing.
Dixson: The acceptance nationally of Advisory Boards has been apparent. What resistance still remains and how do we get beyond those barriers?
Hansen: “This is the way we have always done it,” remains to be the primary resistance to Advisory Boards. We are quickly no longer bound by those crippling adages, because the value of shared data is trumping the fears that have held this industry hostage and back in the Dark Ages. The power of Advisory Boards is realized through the partnerships cultivated over time and working for the greater good of the real estate industry.
As a result, not only do the largest brokers benefit, but also the smaller ones reap the value of shared information and data gathering to create a healthy and vibrant real estate economy for all. The creation of Advisory Boards has developed partnerships between Xceligent and brokers, opening the floodgates to a new era of transactional transparency and data sharing that is both necessary and powerful.