The days of using paper in the office could be numbered, according to one senior industry executive.
With the advent of personal computers, the use of paper-based reporting in the industry is slowly becoming redundant, said chief executive officer at Raine & Horne SA, Kevin Magee.
“I believe in the next seven years at least 70 per cent of the industry will be completely reliant of technology,” he told Real Estate Business.
“For instance, right now I have a tablet laptop next to me instead of a notebook; I use the tablet to jot down notes like a spare bit of paper and it is easy to copy it straight into a document or email.”
Mr Magee’s comments were in response to the latest Real Estate Business straw poll, which revealed that over 55 per cent of respondents believed technology will replace paper-based reporting, although it won’t happen within the next 12 months.
The online poll, which was conducted between Wednesday, March 14 and March 28, also showed that 118 of the 347 respondents said paper will always be involved in reporting while 10 per cent said they believed sometime within the next 12 months paper-based reporting will be made redundant.
While there have been multiple technological revolutions in the past that have threatened the use of paper in business none have been successful said Mr Magee. However the advent of tablet technology could be the catalyst to kick the balance.
“We were told in 1984 that in 10 years' time we would be working in a paperless office but there hasn’t been technology to actually rival the convenience of paper, until now.”
According to Mr Magee, the future of reporting in property management and sales will be based around tablet computers.
“We have already got several offices doing their onsite reporting with tablet devices. It is a fast and efficient way to record manage and significantly cuts down storage,” he said.
“They use a tablet to take photos live and fill out the property report on the screen and before they’ve left the premise they can send the report to the owner.”