Real Estate Owner

Microsoft Office 2013 released – is it good for Construction and Real Estate companies?

Microsoft released Office 2013 this week. As Microsoft Partners we have been using it for 6 months already.  Here here are my observations on how it will affect real estate and construction company users:

  • The interface is “cleaner”.  As usual with an Office upgrade it will take you a couple of days to get used to a few things moving around in Excel, Outook, Word and PowerPoint.  For example the navigation for Outlook between mail, calendars and people (formerly “contacts”) is now in the bottom left of the Outlook program.   Overall you’ll like the look and feel.

Microsoft Surface Pro – Construction or Real Estate Tablet Releasing Feb 9

The Microsoft Surface Pro tablet will blur the line between tablets like the iPad and laptop computers. For construction and real estate users this finally means an ultra portable device that turns on instantly with the ability to save files in folders and work on construction documents and leases in Microsoft Word and Excel. You will also be able to run any windows program.

I think this is a game changer for people that visit construction sites or properties as part of their jobs. Our construction and real estate dashboards, scorecards and drill through reports will shine on this device, making project and leasing managers more productive. 

Financial Consolidations Across 2 Accounting Systems Without Excel

Many companies end up with more than one accounting system. It happens all the time – you acquire another company, merge with another company or end up with a division that is in different line of business that needs a different accounting system to function. Examples we see include:

A) Acquisitions or mergers that lead to 2 similar core systems
Construction companies end up a combination of Timberline Office, ViewPoint Software, Dexter Chaney, Sage Master Builder, etc.  Real Estate companies end up with a combination of Yardi Software, MRI Software, RealPage or Timberline.  Depending on the sizes of each company / division on each system converting to one of the systems is expensive, time consuming and results in huge productivity losses with historical data gone and people taking time to learn the new system.

B) Companies with subsidiaries in different businesses: