By Legal Futures Associate Osprey Approach 
The property market is a diverse ecosystem of multiple professions operating independently. Estate agents, conveyancers, mortgage brokers and lenders provide individual services throughout a property transaction, but unlike other industries such as banking, they aren’t connected by a universal digital network.
The lack of digital connectivity in the property market creates challenges and additional administrative work for conveyancers that hinders efficiencies and productivity. Conveyancers often find themselves using disparate systems and communication channels to rekey data, chase – and be chased – for updates, and check data for consistency to progress a transaction.
During the last 18 months, the unprecedented volume of transactions created by the SDLT holiday has meant that trying to keep on top of those additional manual tasks was a challenge, resulting in many conveyancers working into the night to complete transactions by the SDLT deadline – something that isn’t effective for conveyancers in the long-term when managing workloads.
Connecting in a hybrid-working environment
The importance of connectivity is heightened further with many businesses and professionals across the property market moving to a hybrid-working environment. Firms, departments, and clients are now more physically disconnected than ever before, which only emphasises the need for a digital connection to effectively communicate and collaborate.
Conveyancers can’t continue with siloed data, disparate systems, and disconnected operations because it slows down processes and affects scalability and profitability. It increases the risk of errors, which can lead to unsatisfied clients and increases a conveyancer’s workload of administrative tasks. It also takes up time that otherwise could be spent nurturing client relationships or winning new business.
Of course, not all digital connectivity is equal. Having hundreds of APIs doesn’t give you a ‘single source of the truth,’ just a reconciliation headache. Data that is collected digitally, but not in real-time, may not be up to date. Connectivity needs to be secure – it matters who is seeing it on the way from source to destination. Finally, true connectivity is two-way; it ensures the connection allows both parties to share data with each other.
Five reasons why digital connectivity should be a priority for all conveyancers
The future of conveyancing is digital, which invites opportunities for improving the connectivity of the market. A digitally connected property market will help to improve the workloads of lawyers, increase the profitability of law firms, but importantly remove the friction and pain points within a property transaction for clients. Listed below are five benefits for digitally connecting data and systems across the market.
- Visibility and accuracy
Connecting various property software platforms through one network creates a single source of truth for all actions, updates, and key information within a property transaction. When platforms, processes, and data are connected you immediately reduce the need for manual intervention which reduces the risk of errors. Synchronising your data with other parties helps provide visibility across your firm and ensures accuracy. The right network enables you to easily share that data with clients and third parties too. When everyone is working from one source of truth, all parties can be confident their data is accurate and ensures everyone has visibility of progress.
A goal for most law firms is to drive long-term efficiencies, and digitally connecting and streamlining your operations is one of the crucial ways you can improve efficiencies and the profitability of your firm. Remove the time-consuming and manual admin tasks involved in keeping records up to date, chasing third parties or updating clients and run your firm through a centralised platform that can act as the core for all processes and data to be stored and shared. A practice management system connected in real-time will help to significantly speed up a transaction and make it incredibly easy to share updates with all parties. When your conveyancing processes are streamlined, you improve the scalability of your firm so you can grow without working late into the night or without additional overhead costs.
- Enhanced communication and collaboration
A truly connected property market can instantly improve communication and collaboration across all parties. With secure, real-time connectivity conveyancers can be confident that the data they are sharing and receiving is accurate without needing to manually review it. Connectivity helps to automate the communication needed between parties so diary reminders for updates are a thing of the past and data is effortlessly shared. Conveyancers can work quicker with access to everything they need at their fingertips so they can focus on progressing a transaction, not maintaining its data.
- Client satisfaction
Online property search platforms, like Zoopla and Rightmove, are leading the way for removing friction and pain points throughout the property transaction. By providing a digital self-service platform they put the client back in control of their experience and provide the tools they need, when they need them, to sell and buy a house. Consistent connectivity across the property market will help reduce friction points further helping conveyancers to deliver an effective and transparent service that exceeds client expectations and removes the familiar challenges of buying and selling a property.
If all parties involved in a property transaction had full visibility from their existing software solutions, it would significantly reduce the need for email and phone updates. By reducing your reliance on email communication, you increase the protection and security of your client data. Connect using a secure network and all data remains within your existing platform with controls on who can access it, you’re reducing the need for human interference, therefore, reducing the risk of errors.
The future of conveyancing
To improve efficiencies for your firm that positively affect your bottom-line, to streamline workloads for lawyers and third parties, and to enhance the client experience and reduce the time it takes to buy a property, the property market needs to get connected. The future of conveyancing is a secure, real-time, synchronised network of connected platforms, processes, communications, and data that enables an effortless and streamlined transaction, benefitting all involved.
Digital connectivity should be the number one priority for conveyancers looking to future-proof their firm as it provides new opportunities and possibilities. A connected network of moving parts improves scalability, growth potential and success and it also enables flexibility and adaptability.
Introducing Osprey Approach and Coadjute
The Osprey Approach and Coadjute partnership offers firms a fully connected practice and case management solution designed to future-proof conveyancing processes. Osprey Approach, one of the first case management software solutions to partner with Coadjute, is a powerful platform designed to streamline operations, centralise data and increase efficiencies. Coadjute is a blockchain network designed to connect the property market through the existing platforms of estate agents, conveyancers, mortgage brokers and lenders to enable effortless collaboration. Together, Osprey Approach and Coadjute are part of a bigger plan to offer conveyancers a fully connected solution to manage transactions, communicate with clients and collaborate with third parties.
Find out more about the Osprey Approach and Coadjute partnership here.