Teresa Duran, the CIO of John L. Scott, leads the company information technology department, providing all aspects of technology services including mobile development, innovation and product development, web services, infrastructure/dev ops, networking, desktop engineering, business intelligence, and cybersecurity. Duran's past few positions have focused on driving technology transformation and modernization for companies. John L. Scott is a brokerage company supporting over 3,000 agents across Washington, Idaho, Oregon, and northern California.
Evolving consumer expectations are disrupting every industry, and the real estate industry is no stranger to this phenomenon. I lead the information technology department at John L. Scott, a brokerage company with a footprint across Washington, Oregon, Idaho, and northern California. In my time working in the real estate industry, we have seen significant changes to the traditional brokerage model. For instance, the next generation of homebuyers has access to a multitude of information at their fingertips, which can challenge the status quo of purchasing and engagement preferences across every industry. Digital transformation and artificial intelligence have made purchasing, brand interactions, and complex transactions easier for consumers; from grocery delivery services to purchasing a vehicle online. Consumers want the purchasing process to be hassle-free, expecting certainty and value. They are increasingly willing to pay for services that offer convenience and depend less on human interaction to accomplish their goals.
These evolving consumer habits and expectations, coupled with technology digital transformations will continually drive drastic change and add new competitors across all industries. What differentiates the real estate market from other industries is consumers do not purchase a home frequently – an average buyer stays in their home over 10 years. Home purchases are often the largest investment a consumer makes in their lifetime. As a result, the entire real estate industry will not drastically change overnight, but changes are in motion that will continue to impact the process of buying or selling a home.
The technology landscape for the real estate industry is extremely unique and complex compared to other industries. The industry is shifting with changing business models, technology innovations, and growing competition from publicly-traded companies. These disruptions have resulted in a striking influx of new products and companies moving to aggressively address consumer trends. Innovation is occurring through optimization of real estate transactions and consumer-direct home purchases. While market share is still marginal today for direct purchasing of homes, only time will tell how this segment will evolve.