by Solène Magnani| April 7, 2022
kodehyve is celebrating yet another anniversary very soon — and behind us lies another year marked by a venture-wide evolution. In that context, we feel the urge to reposition who we (really) are.
If we had to summarise our mainspring in a few words, we would claim that kodehyve is a software venture that builds and provides a data-driven collaboration infrastructure tailored to the real estate market. In this piece, we will deep-dive into the kodehyve brand positioning driven by the mind-set the entire team lives (and works) by so as to illustrate what we actually mean when positioning our business.
We used to communicate that kodehyve is a SaaS
At the dawn of our launch, kodehyve was generally focused on bringing high-quality project management and customer relationship management technologies closer to the real estate market. The kodehyve founders having identified endless flaws, inefficiencies and an astonishing lack of transparency in terms of project management and customer relationship management (CRM hereafter), the kodehyve team set the clear ambition of tackling critical process-related issues mainly linked to these two aforementioned aspects.
Indeed, kodehyve’s journey started with a collaboration tool (SaaS) including diverse functionalities allowing real estate professionals to more efficiently manage their construction and commercialisation projects, focusing on project management and CRM.
Let’s first take a step back: the company’s founders have a strong background in FinTech and RegTech where they have implemented a wide range of technologies and associated processes, such as digital customer onboarding, electronic signatures and automated KYC and AML flows, among others. Both industries (i.e. banking and real estate) present very comparable challenges: The real estate industry is very complex and property development requires many documents and transactions, implying a lot of data conveyed between stakeholders in a constantly evolving legal landscape. Thus, implementing powerful FinTech and RegTech technologies constituted a key element to the overall kodehyve strategy and objective of digitally transforming real estate as we know it.
Additionally, it was particularly timely to trigger the process of digital transformation in the sector. Although the property business still shows surprisingly traditional and outdated processes, practices and user experiences, its stakeholders have never been more aware of the benefits of digitalisation. Thereupon, their expectations for a seamless digital experience are increasing. More specifically, our team at kodehyve has identified 5 underlying pressures that set real estate and construction digital transformation for massive growth in the coming years:
People have become accustomed to instant access to information and communication. In parallel, there is an increasing trust in digital products and services (e.g. neobanking). In such sensitive activities as banking and real estate, the critical facets enabling to build client trust are security, complete transparency, extraordinary customer experience, personnalisation and human contact. Those are elements that we strive to integrate in our solution.
We are witnessing a demographic shift in real estate investors as millennials and more importantly Gen Z are entering the market. Those generations are looking for (and are already psychologically dependent on) direct access to information and seamless digital experiences, which is part of the reasons we aimed to bring digitalisation to real estate.
From an economic perspective, companies are overtaken by operational inefficiencies considerably affecting their margins. As a result, they are pushed to find solutions so as to improve efficiencies and are more inclined to adopt technologies. Besides, saturated markets and fierce competition are some of the many factors urging property developers and related stakeholders to make their brand stand out in order to gain market share. This can be done through enhanced customer experiences and increased transparency enabled by powerful digital tools.
The similarities between banking and real estate in terms of challenges faced is nevertheless marked by a considerable difference: real estate is lagging at least 10 years behind banking in terms of digitalisation. Real estate is underserved in terms of market-specific digital solutions and thus experiences until now a timid use of the (few) available tools. There is a real gap to be filled in terms of technology offered to this market.
Rising environmental concerns are driving an increase in adoption of appropriate digital tools to foster more sustainable processes. Property industry is rich in paper-intensive processes, thus digitalisation of these operations can considerably contribute to reducing the environmental footprint.
Existing solutions partially solving the issues
As aforementioned, the real estate and construction industry is lacking market-specific digital solutions. Nonetheless, there are already a variety of solutions dedicated to the management of real estate projects. However, when we analysed the existing market and available technologies, we found various solutions that aim to resolve only very specific use cases (usually one at a time). Furthermore, available solutions seemed to be quite rigid in a market that is constantly evolving.
From “some software” to the real estate IT infrastructure
By working hand in hand with our clients and partners for a few years now, kodehyve has developed a deep understanding and expertise of the real estate industry and its specificities. Through meaningful conversations with a wide range of real estate players, we identified both the strengths as well as the areas for improvement of our products. As kodehyve evolved substantially, we feel it is appropriate to communicate around the slight repositioning of some of the key elements that make up our brand so that the public is aligned with our vision.
First of all, we did not stop at project management and CRM tools. We have identified many more needs from various stakeholders and found that there were humongous possibilities to push the industry forward. Accordingly, we have broadened our platform with additional modules as well as third-party APIs. Besides task and deadline management, digital customer onboarding, e-signatures, KYC and AML checks, and other project management and CRM features, kodehyve now also provides finance-related features.
In particular, we added a range of financial planning and monitoring functionalities so as to enable users to craft and track budgets in the most efficient and user-friendly way.
Most importantly, we provide state-of-the-art business intelligence (BI) and data analytics modules to leverage projects’ data and enable market players to steer well-informed decisions, identify opportunities and optimise their operations. The data conveyed between the different actors of the sector is large and complex and there is an untapped potential to exploit it. For that reason, we take this as our duty to educate and incentivise our customers and partners to adopt a data-driven approach.
Last but not least, we have put an even stronger emphasis on security practices. While security and data protection have been treated with utmost importance since our inception, we have intensified our focus on these aspects since we have become much more than a “simple” SaaS tool. That said, becoming a true infrastructure for property developers’ entire businesses comes with a lot of responsibilities since we treat the most confidential data of property developers and linked stakeholders. Assuredly, the legal aspects, such as compliance with electronic signature and data protection regulations, among many others, are crucial in real estate, especially considering the increasing volume of sensitive data treated in our platform, the value of the contracts at stake and the various associated risks. For that reason, organisations need to have high security and data protection standards. And for us, coming from the CSSF-regulated Fin/RegTech space, it was the only logical way to go. Thereby, our tools combine the highest technical security practices, 2FA mechanisms, platform-wide audit trails as well as compliance with applicable regulations, such as GDPR and eIDAS.
Going through this multifaceted evolution, we realised that we are more than a “simple” software-as-a-service (SaaS). More specifically, kodehyve is the property developers’ trusted digital partner providing a complete infrastructure whose role is to act as the backbone of the whole real estate development processes covering (almost) all use cases rather than just a few specific use cases and aspects.
Collaboration at the heart of our solution
Real estate is a very broad and simultaneously extremely specialised ecosystem which requires the synchronisation and the collaboration of many different stakeholders. They range from property developers, architects to agencies and many more, and all work in very different ways with a variety of methodologies and mindsets. All these stakeholders collaborate on a lot of activities all along the value chain, such as designing, building and selling, while simultaneously dealing with budget tracking, project management and data analysis tasks. Achieving a construction project within the deadline and budget involves optimal collaboration between the stakeholders throughout frictionless workflows, efficient communication and organised navigation through regulatory requirements. For that reason, we provide property developers with a fully-integrated and user-friendly infrastructure enabling them to coordinate all the relevant aspects of the property development process and collaborate with all stakeholders within the same dedicated space.
A general but key aspect that has not changed since our inception a few years back is the mission of bringing high-quality technologies to the real estate space. Furthermore, our team always had the purpose of enhancing the whole real estate ecosystem as opposed to “simply” digitalising individual companies.
The idea behind our infrastructure-like solution is that each module and component is articulated around a single powerful framework. It allows property developers to manage their whole ecosystem containing a wide range of use cases and associated workflows from one interface and connected spaces. The latter avoids property developers to rely on multiple heterogeneous tools that are not always connected and do not always communicate with one another. As a result, information is held in silos which tends to generate inefficiencies and leaves a lot of highly valuable data on the sidelines.
We are an all-in-one platform that powers a suite of connected micro-services tailored to property development. However, property developers all have specific needs so the platform is intended to be adaptable. Hence, kodehyve is proposed as a plug-and-play solution: We empower our partners to create their own infrastructure enabling them to increase efficiencies and transparency within project management, CRM, financial planning and data analytics/business intelligence.
An educational role to play
All that being said, the property sector remains one of the areas with the highest upside potential and necessary improvements technologically speaking.
Despite the weight of the construction industry in the global economy, it remains one of the least digitised sectors. According to McKinsey’s Industry Digitization Index, it is ranked penultimate across all principle sectors. If real estate is performing slightly better, they both have a long way to go in terms of digital adoption.
Indeed, the deeper we dive into the rabbit hole of real estate digitalisation, the more we realise that the entire industry and its stakeholders require technical education. Even though we assessed a strong readiness and willingness to digitalise by many of the sector’s players, many of the technologies we implement are not known to a wide range of stakeholders, requiring a certain technical literacy effort before being able to implement such technologies. Thus, during the evolution of kodehyve, we realised we have a responsibility to educate the market — an aspect that has lately become a key element within our venture’s mission.
We strive to act as an advisor for our clients and more widely to raise awareness about those technologies among the real estate ecosystem. We are looking to provide a perfectly suitable solution for each of our clients and for that reason we assess each situation with attention. We send our team members into the field to work hand in hand with our customers to deploy the kodehyve solution. That said, we offer a service that goes beyond simple software. Hence we present ourselves as a « Team-as-a-Service » (TaaS), guiding and supporting our partners and clients throughout the entire lifecycle of their real estate projects on a technical level.
It goes without saying that digitalising (before even digitally transforming) this industry is ambitious and requires some well thought-out effort in terms of product development. We see the real estate industry as a very heterogeneous world relying on a humongous amount of quantitative and qualitative input from professionals active in many different sub-sectors.
For those reasons we will concentrate our efforts on a sustained collaboration with experts from the sector to keep enhancing processes, collaboration and transparency within real estate. Additionally, we shoulder the responsibility to educate the market about existing technologies and foster the adoption of a data-driven approach. We are also committed to contribute to the decarbonisation of the industry by reducing its paper consumption, amongst many others.
kodehyve is already contributing to create a positive impact in terms of productivity, transparency and sustainability in the real estate space. However, we feel like there is still much to be done. So let’s get back to work and make it happen!
If what we have just explained resonates with you, you might want to read our previous blog post on How to choose the right IT partner. Should you feel your organisation could benefit from our real estate infrastructure, reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule a demo.
kodehyve is where collaboration and transparency replace inefficiencies.
Visit kodehyve.com for more information.