Email And Excel Are The Most Productive Tools For #CRE. How Can You Possibly Compete?

As I am out and about in New York generally and, in between taking pictures of buildings on Instagram therealdukelong  I meet with all types of people creating products for the world of #CRE. Most call them tools some call them solutions and even more call it selling software as a service. (SaaS)

Software as a service (SaaS /sæs/[1]) is a software licensing and delivery model in which software is licensed on a subscription basis and is centrally hosted. It is sometimes referred to as “on-demand software”, and was formerly referred to as “software plus services” by Microsoft.[2] SaaS is typically accessed by users using a thin client, e.g. via a web browser. SaaS has become a common delivery model for many business applications, including office software, messaging software, payroll processing software, DBMS software, management software, CAD software, development software, gamification, virtualization,[3] accounting, collaboration, customer relationship management (CRM), Management Information Systems (MIS), enterprise resource planning (ERP), invoicing, human resource management (HRM), talent acquisition, learning management systems, content management (CM), Geographic Information Systems (GIS), and service desk management.[4] SaaS has been incorporated into the strategy of nearly all leading enterprise software companies.[5][6] Source-Wikipedia.

If you look at the highlighted part of the very description of what SaaS is it would seem almost all of the enterprise solutions have an application that could and should be used by #CRE.

And how many companies are out there now trying everything they can to sell their specific “solution” to #CRE?

It numbers in the thousands. I’ve Always Said That #Cretech And #Proptech Is Global. Here Is Proof!

But what are they competing against? Time, Effort, Money, Old School Mentality, Legacy Companies etc. etc?

At least that’s what most all of them say but they are missing two big things that are stopping any if not all reasons for #CRE to buy and adopt their products.

Email and Excel.

Just those two simple pieces of software. 


They work and they work well for all of us every day.

According to a 2018 Radicati Group study, there will be more than 3.8 billion email users before the start of 2019, over 100 million more than the previous year. In other words, over half of the entire planet uses email right now.

By the way, email was invented in 1972.

And Excel is used by over one half billion people worldwide.

Excel was first released in 1987.

Oh, and just to make sure you have some context both obviously were working well before “the cloud” even existed.

Productivity and Efficiencies.

In a conversation I had a couple of weeks ago with a major building owner in Manhattan we talked about many things but what three things were the most important to them?

  1. How could they create more productivity in their processes?
  2. What could they do to create more efficiencies in their buildings?
  3. What could they do to get more ROI?

There it is plain and simple. 

And unfortunately most of the software sales companies are saying “here just use my band-aid and it will fix part of your problem.” And give me lots of money to do it.

Most if not all of the owners are saying, “no, we have Excel, we are doing just fine.”

And they are. Business is booming. Values are up. Rent is climbing in many sectors and so on an so on.

I’ve said it more than a thousand times and I’m sure I will say it thousands of times more.

“If It Ain’t Broke Don’t Fix It.” Trillions and Trillions of dollars of assets still being managed by a program 32 years old.

What problem are you trying so hard to fix? Your personal bank account? I can’t think of any other reason?

Another conversation this week with a long time back end office person who knows all of the major owners’ operations. Guess what they had to say? “Just use more of the Microsoft products you already own.” Think about that. Simple and Brilliant

This stuff does not have to be complicated to work.

Communication and Collaboration.

Flowdock, Slack, Asana, Trello, What’s App, Hip Chat, Telegram.

If you have been in any type of organization at all you have heard of at least a few of these communications and collaboration tools.  Slack being one of the leaders, last year, it said it had 8 million daily active users and 3 million paid users.

I have personally been on Slack many times and there are several groups of #CRE and #Tech people on there. BUT…it’s just another thing I need to open and keep track of.

Everyone is hammering me to be on What’s App. Supposedly if I’m not I am missing out on some serious conversation and content.

Then, of course, there is Twitter.

LinkedIn and so many more.

And there is good old email. The simple tool invented in 1972.

Guess what, probably like you, I use it more than any tool I have every day. 

It’s my way of communicating, scheduling and database/searching/doing just about anything and more than any other possible tool available to me.


It makes efficient use of my time. It keeps using information simple. I can have a conversation, with brevity. I can use it on the go and sitting like I am right now in my apartment on a laptop. If you don’t email me, I won’t respond. Period. It’s how I communicate with the business world. It’s how I schedule anything. If I’m in a meeting, I will send meeting notes to myself via email. Why? I will check it when I have time and take action on those notes. No need for five other apps. Just one and it’s free.

Are there potentially better ways to do business than email? Yes, there are, but that’s more about data than communication.

Email just works.

Excel just works.

Email And Excel Are The Most Productive Tools For #CRE.

How Can You Possibly Compete against that?

Hell if I know…well maybe I do, if you just send me an email…


+1 Freebie: Look at Tableau. I wrote about this amazing product in 2011!  

+1+1 If I am texting you…you are indeed special. Text, the new insider way to communicate. Are you on that list? Nah? Good luck getting there!

The Duke Provides!


Duke Long

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