What is the “new oil” in commercial real estate?

Data can be scary

“A lot of times, you know, we hear data and it’s kind of this creepy monster in the corner,” Remynse said. “And so we think it’s something abstract and hard to understand. But my job is really to help you understand that even if you’re not a data scientist, you can still find value in data and bring value to your organization by understanding data.

Ho went further by calling data fun – an adjective that doesn’t come to mind for most people when they grasp the concept: “I think data is fun, and data on commercial real estate are extremely fun,” he said. “And I think we have a completely different set of challenges than other industries.”

In describing his work, Remynse illustrated the mystery that data holds for many, hence the need to demystify the subject: “What we do is we educate the masses about data from the beginning, the beginner comprehensive, just trying to figure out what the data really means,” she said. “I’m trying to become an advanced data scientist in machine learning and everything. So I’ve spent the last few years in that space and also worked in banking and fintech, really trying to educate the masses about data.

Data is the new oil

She agreed with the oil analogy when it comes to data: “Data is the new oil, but just like oil, you need to know how to use it to find real value. If you were to just dig into your garden and find some oil, you’d probably be like, “OK, now what? And that’s the same thing a lot of people run into with data. I might have a lot of data, but I need to know how Predictive is a big word to think about – we have to use it to predict. We also have to be there and educated enough to be able to interpret whatever those predictions are so that we can really find value in the data.

The value of data, she said, can be surprising: “Often if you look at data or work with data with the idea that you already know what the outcome will be, you’re going to miss a bigger picture,” she said. “So going in with an open mind and being able to explore it holistically and not necessarily having this pre-determined outcome. And also leaning on those industry experts. Leaning on your data analyst or data scientist data and about the people in your organization who have a lot to say about data and know the ins and outs of the data they work with – they are the ones who can help deliver that value.

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