Are you procuring your PropTech on a whim?


PropTech Advice


Michael Crawford


April 12, 2023

Are you procuring your PropTech on a whim?

Procuring proptech is hard. Procuring the right proptech is even harder. Thankfully though, there are ways to make your proptech procurement journey easier.

But why can’t some landlords, occupiers or operators get it right?


1.    No centralised strategy

We frequently see companies trying to procure tech in silos without a centralised strategy. Rather than proactively procuring tech after fully understanding what is needed, why it’s needed, and who benefits, technology is purchased reactively after being approached by a tech company, or a team member suggesting a certain piece of tech “looks good”.

By making sure a clear strategy is in place across the central business, portfolio wide, individual asset, and the relevant teams, you can make sure technology is purposefully procured and not purchased because it looks good.  


2.    Not understanding the technology

Technology is, unsurprisingly, created by people with a deep technical knowledge and real estate experts don’t always understand it. Salespeople can talk the talk, but if you or your company don’t have the knowledge to ask the right questions, this lack of understanding can cause issues down the line.

It’s not just the lack of technical knowledge at the procurement stage that needs to be considered. Whilst your procurement team may understand risks and ask some of the right questions, they need to consider whether the teams using it understand it, or factor in proper training to get to grips with it.


3.    Poor Communication

Communication breakdowns between real estate and technology providers lead to misunderstandings and misaligned expectations. Tech talk tech and real estate talk real estate –without working together to make sure both sides understand each other’s requirements, technology is often not implemented properly or used as intended.

Poor internal communication internally also causes issues. Make sure you check with other teams before  researching and implementing tech as they may already have the answers you are looking for.


4.    “But they said it could do it”.

Of course they did. And it probably can in theory. But you’re busy. Your team are busy. And you’ve not got time establish all the facts. But letting detailed due diligence go by the wayside is a recipe for disaster.

You or your team may not have the technical knowledge, but instead of relying on the “yes, our technology can do that” statement from the tech provider, invest in support to verify that the tech can do what it says it can do.

Without this you can end up with technology that doesn’t meet your needs and isn’t scalable for your operations.


A solution is not the answer to all your problems. It is the beginning.

ESG tech is (understandably) top priority right now. But is your ESG tech procurement starting off on the right foot?

Are you asking the right questions? Is a solid strategy in place? And has adequate due diligence been carried out to ensure the desired outcome?



Don’t fall for glossy marketing decks.

Next time you’re approached by a tech company, or attend industry events such as MIPIM, make sure you’re keeping those questions in mind when being presented with the newest all-singing, all-dancing tech solution on the market.

If you’re not already thinking about the problem they’re trying to solve, you’re not considering the tech for the right reasons.

If it looks like it could solve an existing problem, be prepared to put in the cost, the effort and the resources required to thoroughly question the solution and the company.

Doing this is for the benefit of your company, your stakeholders and the tech companies themselves.


It’s OK to ask for help.

If you need someone to ask the right questions, do the due diligence or integrate tech into your strategy, Trustek can help.

We confidently talk ‘tech’ and fluently speak ‘real estate’.

We understand the challenges real estate face and have managed numerous procurement processes that have resulted in successfully adopted tech that delivers the desired outcomes.

Book a time in our diary and start your tech procurement journey off on the right foot.

Michael Crawford


Michael Crawford

For more than fifteen years Michael has been working with both large corporates and SME's in various markets, spanning from APAC to Europe to the Americas. Over his many roles he has built long lasting relationships with colleagues and clients and formed a vast network of service partners. He has a strong drive to bring the newest innovations to the PropTech market and the ability to offer solid, no-nonsense strategic advice, often working with the advice to either simplify, innovate, or stop. Michael’s current contracting roles as both Head of Innovation for Colliers Property Management and Lateral London, mean he is currently working on more than 40 ‘smart building technology’ projects within the UK.

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