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General News, Property Management

NPG: then, now & next

You, like me, will have been hearing about how we’re on the precipice of great change in the property industry for a while now. An industry that (until very lately) has been slow to adapt to the shifting societal dynamics and technological advances around it, we all know the scope for meaningful change in the property game is great.

However organisations seeking to actually deliver transformation have found the complex structures and existing commercial models hard-wired into the industry tough to overcome, slowing the pace of forward progress.

For a long time many property organisations, big and small, established and new, consultants, managers and technology providers alike had all made noises around change, but the services they were offering and results they achieved seldom if ever matched the soundbites.

Last year I was reflecting on this, and began to seriously consider what I could do to realise some of the ways I felt the industry could deliver a better service which I’d identified during my years managing and investing in real estate.

Of course I couldn’t do this all by myself, so I decided to set about on a mission to find like-minded people to join me. These people had to have experience looking at the same challenges through different lenses; from the manager and developer side, as well as from traditional surveying backgrounds and those with more unorthodox career paths. But most importantly, I had to find people that wanted to accelerate the pace of change in the industry and who possessed the experience and drive to actually get things done.

After a period searching for the right partners, Navana Property Group was born.

Since our management team was formed, we’ve grown quickly. We’ve welcomed new recruits and new clients, as well as just completing a move into a new office premises that suits our current and operational needs. We offer our client partners a diversified suite of expert property services, helping them to make sense of the world and create more value for everybody from the properties, places and spaces we consult on, develop, and activate.

So what’s next for us?

For me, now more than ever speed of information exchange and decision making will separate good property businesses from the best ones, and this will only become more apparent in future.

We are here to test, learn, adjust and deliver quicker than the typical property group. We are enabled to do this by our structure, resourcing, technology stack and perhaps most importantly, our independent culture. Retaining this flexibility and staying true to our ethos must be a priority of mine as we grow.

In the property management division of our group, I feel especially strongly about changing things for the better. Traditionally a low margin service line that struggles to attract and retain the best talent, understandably even the best property management providers are challenged to provide the customer-centric service that residents and occupiers now demand, and rightly so.

There are many ways in which we are approaching property management differently, but one of these ways concerns the role of the property manager. We believe this role has now become impossible to fulfill successfully.

This is due to the multiple hats the modern property manager is required to wear. What other industry would look to one role to provide leadership and delivery in such a variety of diverse skillsets such as customer service and experience, financial management, mechanical and engineering and contractor and project management?

That’s why you won’t find a single Property Manager in our business. What you will find however are a team of experts in traditional and non-traditional property functions such as compliance, communication, creative place activation, sustainability and technology all supported by a team of customer relations managers, who provide one point of contact for our clients

We will also continue to in our endeavours to bring increased transparency to those who work in property and the occupiers, residents and people which we all serve. Right now we are partnering with technology businesses who are not currently exposed to our industry to test and apply their proven technologies in the world of property.

We are fortunate that today there are more organisations than ever who are delivering new and exciting advances in the property world. The businesses who first of all recognise they need to adapt, invest in new ways of doing things & technologies and move rapidly to deliver all of this will be the ones who thrive.

Harry Fenner, Chief Executive Officer