Everywhere we turn today, it seems that we’re learning more about climate change and the impact it has on not only our daily lives, but the shaping of the world that will be in the years to come! And, while the arguments for or against climate change vary greatly, one thing is certain: businesses in every industry are looking for new ways to “go green”. In this regard, hard money firms are no exception.
We have discussed this office movement in the past, but new trends are emerging, signaling a continuation of what we will coin the Green Movement. Real estate lenders everywhere are leveraging technology to create a “greener” workspace, establishing convenience for employees, reducing overhead costs, creating a better borrower experience, all while helping in the reduction waste.
The Environmental Factors
Though we can spend all day discussing the importance of conservation for environmental purposes, that isn’t why we’re here today. Instead, our focus is, and will remain, the various “green activities” currently being seen in the hard money lending industry. However, because our social responsibilities should always be centered on how we impact our surroundings, it is obviously important to note that the following methods are having an incredibly positive impact on national conservation efforts!
The Modern GREEN OFFICE
Going green INSIDE the office has become increasingly more convenient, as digital information and cloud technology both continue to expand their reach and usage. Offices in the hard money lending industry are leveraging green policies to save money on daily use materials. Emails being sent everyday are commonplace, but have you ever stopped to think about how much is saved in this simple, daily occurrence?
Paper, fuel for delivery, time (yes, time is a resource!)…all of these things add up quickly. Imagine that every single email you have sent was delivered by standard “snail mail”. Now, imagine the trucks carrying letters for every employee in your office building. Finally, consider how many trucks are required for every office building in a city such as Los Angeles. Now that we have it in perspective, let’s run down some of the latest “green changes” currently witnessed in the hard money lending industry – so, without further ado…
The Elimination of Paper
Emails are an elementary example, and yes, I know that emails have been around for decades. The point of outlining the above example was to show just how much paper business required. Today, paper is a thing of the past. We’ve moved into the age of online loan applications, digital files (including property photographs), and even the ability to close a deal without ever meeting with a client in person. And, while we always prefer to shake the hand of someone we’re conducting business with, it has become increasingly popular to have a “face-to-face” video conference, hammer out the details of the deal, and move on with the day.
The age of paper is behind us. But, this doesn’t just help the environment! From a practical level, it improves office efficiency, while dramatically reducing processing times for customers. Additionally, it helps to reduce the propensity for “lost applications” or “misplaced paperwork”. When the customer experience improves, companies flourish – if you haven’t gone paperless, it might be time for an inter-office update…
Ditching the Office Completely
The trend of telecommuting is possible largely in part because of the previous paperless trend we discussed. With everything available on a digital cloud, employees can skip the mundane morning and evening commutes, staying in the comfort of their homes, often enjoying higher productivity and lower stress levels. Again, happier employees also lead to a better customer experience. Noticing a pattern here? We certainly hope so…
It’s important to note that tools such as Skype (no, they didn’t sponsor this article, though we should have asked!) can help to keep the team connected, regardless of who is in the office and who is working from home.
Altering the Work Day
The final trend we’ll point out in this segment is the switch to 3 and 4 day work weeks. By asking employees to commute less during the week, while simply working more hours in each workday, employers are learning that employees enjoy the 3-4 working days followed by a 3-4 day weekend. This falls in line with reducing stress and commuting costs, creating a happier work environment, and logically, a better experience for customers.
Regardless of your reasons for going green, the movement has benefits in both the environmental and financial realms. Hard money lenders, for example, continue to leverage these policies, leading the way in an industry that has long been chained to filing cabinets full of paperwork.
Think “going green” is just an environmental concept? Think again!