July 15, 2020 | Tyler Staton

Moving from Ad Hoc to Strategic Value

Data analysis becomes more and more critical to your success every day. For many, Excel is still the analysis tool of choice. But as convenient as it can be, it has some major limitations. With pressure mounting to gain deeper insight from your data, spreadsheets don’t always have the capabilities to deliver the intelligence you need to win. The good news? The tool you need is available.

1. Secure and manage your data

Manage your data at scale

For the most accurate data insights, it’s important to have the capability to use as much data as is necessary to paint the whole picture. To do this you need to have a system that gives you the capabilities to control your information at scale. However, spreadsheets are particularly weak at this. For example, 1) when data in your spreadsheet is mis-edited or overwritten - it’s gone, 2) keeping tabs on who has the master file, how many copies are out there, and what are the discrepancies is laborious, 3) sophisticated macros and calculations can often bring a spreadsheet to a screeching halt, 4) being able to search your historical data to identify trends is simply not feasible. Using Talox, a system that was purpose-built to manage your data can make these issues a thing of the past.

 

Secure your sensitive business information

Your lease data is sensitive and important to keep safe. Spreadsheets lack many of the security capabilities of cloud-based software. Once your data enters a spreadsheet the enterprise can easily lose track of how many copies are made or who it has been shared with. There are many stories of disgruntled employees leaving their job and taking copies of their spreadsheets with them to their new employers. Using a cloud software with configurable user security permissions can give you control over your data. You can select who has access to what data, and keep robust audit logs of exactly when it was accessed and by whom. 

2. Automatic updates

Be up-to-date

Your spreadsheet is only as good as the last time you updated it. What if you had a dashboard that was up-to-date every time you opened it? Putting even a basic dashboard together in a spreadsheet can take hours. Often you get to what you think is the end, and an email arrives with new data attached. With Talox, your dashboards are linked to your leasing and asset data and automatically updated every time data is edited, a status is changed, or a key date is approaching. Talox becomes the record of truth for your leasing and asset management teams, where they can collaborate to stay on top of their tasks.

Avoid manual errors

People mess up from time to time, but when it involves your leases those mistakes can cost your business thousands of dollars. Manually updating information in spreadsheets is particularly prone to errors and omissions. Imagine for example, instead of constantly updating and monitoring your spreadsheets, you are notified every time a key date is approaching. In Talox you can customize your alerts to give yourself the advanced warning you need to never again miss a lease expiry, rent review, or a non-standard right or option. Missing a key date or making a calculation error can cost you, so stop leaving money on the table by using Talox, the right tool for the job. 

 

3. Integrate your data in one place

Make your data accessible

No matter how big or small your organization is, you’ve probably got data everywhere, and lots of it. It’s not only kept in spreadsheets anymore, but in the cloud, and in on-premise data warehouses. Lease, asset, deal and market data are just a few examples of ballooning information that can’t be properly analyzed in a spreadsheet. Talox is a user-friendly tool where all this data is in one place and can be easily accessed by your teams that focus on revenue generation. It gives them the information they need to make the best decisions on how to maximize your rent and building values.

Gain a complete picture

Not having a single place for leasing and asset management data forces spreadsheet users to use subsets of data for ad hoc analysis—which will only give you a partial picture. You are too busy to waste hours deciding which set of data you can live without or budgeting time to update your calculations. The reality is, with just a spreadsheet, you’re going to hit a brick wall.  


 

4. Real-time visualizations

Getting from questions to answers

Not knowing the answer isn’t fun - especially in a meeting when you’re trying to address a problem. Set yourself up to be able to answer questions on the fly, by using visualizations that quickly and easily communicate information. Interactive data tables, dashboards and a current data feed can enable important analytical tasks, such as sorting and filtering, adjusting parameters, performing quick calculations, and drilling down to examine underlying information. Answering the unanticipated questions immediately with a few mouse clicks is a challenge with spreadsheets, but Talox is designed specifically for that. 

 

See changes over time

A spreadsheet may give you a quick snapshot of the current situation, but your business isn’t static, so you need to know how things are changing over time. Utilizing visuals to look at a time trend for demand, rental rates, and tenant turnover gives you the ability to forecast and plan appropriately. Making decisions by including historical data with your real-time picture can make for more informed decisions about the future. In order to glean useful insights from time-sensitive data you will need an easy way to visualize it.


 

5. Consolidate fragmented workflows

Streamline your processes

It’s been said that time kills all deals, so how many deals have you lost because of delays in your leasing process? Using spreadsheets can be a convenient shortcut to completing the simple tasks that need to be done in order to lease out space, but relying on spreadsheets for many of the steps in your workflow slows your team down. By consolidating your leasing and asset management tasks in a purpose built-software you are able to automate many repetitive tasks, increase standardization, and boost collaboration which all help to make sure your workflow is fully optimized. 


Track every step of your process

 

Spreadsheets don’t leave you a verifiable audit trail of what was changed, by whom, and when. When questions arise such as, how many deals is your team working on, or how long does it take you to turn around an offer letter on average, most real estate organizations don’t know. Spreadsheets just don’t give you the needed visibility. Without an audit trail it is very difficult to identify and address bottlenecks in your workflows or create accountability. A system that is designed to accommodate every step of your workflow gives you the information you need to ensure your leasing team is a well oiled machine. 


 

Conclusion

Your team may love spreadsheets, but there are some very clear drawbacks to tolerating an over reliance on them. If you want your business to remain competitive in the digital future you need to consolidate your data and workflows in a purpose-built tool that can give you the security, automation and visualizations you will need to compete. Weaning your business off spreadsheets can be easier than you may expect. Talox is user-friendly and was designed specifically for commercial real estate, which means transitioning your leasing and asset management team from manual spreadsheets to a software tool can be done quickly and smoothly - often taking less than 2 weeks to migrate your data and get your team trained. 

Tyler Staton

Co - Founder | Talox

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