Our insightful series delves into the findings of MRI Software’s national research report for the commercial property sector, titled the “Voices of Digital Transformation Report.”
The digital transformation landscape is rapidly evolving, with organizations across various industries embracing innovative technologies to enhance efficiency and performance. This transformation is particularly evident in the commercial property sector, as highlighted in the “Voices of Digital Transformation Report” by MRI Software. In this exclusive interview, we explore the experiences and insights of Ramesh Narayanan, Head of Digital at QIC Real Estate, shedding light on their approach to digital transformation and the lessons learned.
About QIC Real Estate
QIC Real Estate, a specialized arm of QIC, a globally renowned diversified alternative investment firm, manages an extensive AUD$22bn portfolio. This portfolio comprises over 40 mixed-use retail and commercial assets spanning Australia and international locations, committed to sustainable investment performance.
The Digital Transformation Odyssey
Ramesh Narayanan emphasizes the critical importance of defining clear business requirements before delving into technology deployment. He warns against the allure of technology without a comprehensive understanding of business needs, urging organizations to stay focused on value throughout the digital transformation journey.
“So often, people get very excited by tech as opposed to being clear on what the business requires. Staying focused on value is a persistent challenge.”Ramesh Narayanan, QIC.
Implementing Novel Solutions
Ramesh outlines the key pillars of a successful implementation project, emphasizing the significance of clear requirements, an effective tender process, and a simplified business case template. He details the subsequent steps involving a digital governance group’s approval, implementation, integration into the business, and ongoing support and maintenance.
“From there it goes through a digital governance group chaired by our MD for final approval.”
Managing Change and Evaluating Success
To ensure successful buy-in, Ramesh stresses the importance of defining requirements upfront and utilizing a RACI model. Transparently measuring success, breaking down ROI, and establishing robust finance systems for effective tracking are highlighted as crucial aspects.
“It seems like common sense, but I don’t think most people do it.”Ramesh Narayanan, QIC Real Estate.
Dealing with Data Security
Ramesh discusses QIC Real Estate’s distinctive approach to cybersecurity, initiating tailored standards for the property industry. He underscores the importance of addressing cybersecurity essentials before delving into the business case and advocates for closer integration of cybersecurity teams from the early stages.
“Moving forward, we’re working on integrating our cybersecurity teams more closely into the process, ensuring they have a higher level of involvement from the early stages.”
Lessons and Best Practices
Ramesh emphasizes the need for collaboration between commercial and technical teams, aligning technology implementations with commercial objectives. He urges a focus on real value amid the hype surrounding new tech solutions, drawing from his extensive experience in the evolving proptech space.
Proptech Trends to Watch
Ramesh identifies generative AI and advancements in data strategy as significant trends shaping the future. He discusses QIC’s participation in Microsoft’s Copilot trial, showcasing the transformative potential of generative AI. Additionally, he highlights the potential game-changing impact of data analytics in enhancing property efficiency.
“Having data analytics automatically figure out why a light is on in your comms room at midnight, for example. We’re already starting to delve into that territory, and it will be a game-changer. I’d say that’s the big emerging trend to watch.”Ramesh