How the pandemic has changed the way estate agencies work

The pandemic has changed the way we work forever.

And although current government advice still requests that employees work from home where possible, it won’t be long until many of us are looking to make a return to the office.

For many employees, working from home has meant an overall improvement to our work-life balance, giving us more time to handle day-to-day responsibilities, enjoy family life, relax and prioritise what matters.

And aside from the general trepidation many of us are experiencing when it comes to the return to ‘normal’ life, many employees fear that after the pandemic, we’ll all be stuck back in our old routines.

For estate agencies, there have been many benefits to the newfound flexibility of our remote working routines. But has the pandemic changed how the industry operates in the long-run, or are we mere months away from business as usual?

A permanent change?

The new shift to WFH has inspired countless think-pieces on how the arrangement can bolster morale and increase productivity.

And naturally, there are complications to long-term working from home, such as communication challenges and health and safety compliance. Implementing clear policies on keeping good contact (without micromanaging) will help prevent any potential miscommunication, whilst organisations like Homework can help create the right remote-working setup for your employees.

A culture of remote working can also foster trusting relationships between employers and staff, ultimately a strong motivator on a day-to-day basis and one which will increase your employee retention.

Connecting with the customer

Your customer isn’t available exclusively during Monday to Friday – so why should your agency be?

With swathes of us returning to work post-furlough, many workers are now less available between those 9-5 peak times, meaning greater challenges in seamless communication between agencies and clients.

However, in an industry such as real estate, that flexibility is essential for providing clients with the service and support they need round the clock. By granting your agents a degree of flexibility in their working hours, it is not only them that benefit – you may also be improving your overall client service.

A change across industries?

In the long-run, a shift in working practices that allows for telecommunicating as standard, not just in our industry but across others, could mean an unexpected boon for the housing market. In a future where more roles are carried out from home on a permanent basis, fewer workers will be restricted by location when it comes to buying houses.

As this becomes less of a factor and more buyers are able to shop further afield, this pushes the boundaries of what estate agents can offer and could expand your client base significantly, meaning plentiful potential for growth in the future.

In an unpredictable industry, it’s difficult to say for sure where the next direction will lead us, but one thing is clear – what may once have seemed a radical change is set to become the norm for many of us.

How has the pandemic changed your role?

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