“Our website, barfoot.co.nz, is where information technology and the strength of Barfoot & Thompson’s brand come together,” says CIO Simon Casey. Further improvements to barfoot.co.nz functionality and its user interface are planned in the coming year.
“Upcoming IT projects will improve access to property information for our agents while out on the road, through the delivery of an iPad application to be used by sales people and the general public. We will also improve rental management staff efficiency through the deployment of a mobile property inspections application. Further investment in IT disaster recovery is being considered, which includes a full review of power redundancy, redundant telecommunications links and offsite standby fileservers,” he says.
Significant IT planning will see Barfoot & Thompson through a head office relocation this year. Budgets and projects are up by as much as five per cent, with major focus to be placed on IT disaster recovery, a desktop PC refresh, residential property key security developments and an intranet re-platforming project.
The company recently adopted Google Apps, after seeking a compatible, flexible and low cost way to send emails from within the new property management system. The adoption has led to improved teamwork through controlled access to colleagues’ email, calendar and contacts, and the flexibility of working for longer periods of time without needing to return to their office to update and sync.
The innovative real estate company will continue to leverage investments in cloud computing, wireless, mobility, business intelligence and social media, the latter of which includes an active presence on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.