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A Brokerage IT Leader's View on MLS Consolidation
Consolidation of associations and/or MLSs at any level has its pros and cons. Consolidation can tip the scale in the way that it improves the business, the industry and, most importantly, how it impacts all the stakeholders. This, of course, includes the consumer who is at the top of pyramid! Before we get into the consolidation, my views are from over 14 years as an IT leader in a brokerage. I have experienced the outcomes of several MLSs' provider changes and consolidation of associations and MLSs.
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Is Too Much Agent-centricity at the Heart of Industry Dysfunction?
A couple of months ago I wrote a post called "Challenge for Positive Change" that highlighted many of the relationship dysfunctions we are experiencing in the industry today. We have the honor of working with large brokers as well as MLSs, Associations, technology companies and even title and home warranty providers. We see misperceptions and distrust running rampant between each of these groups. It's clear that there are many that are feeling as though our industry could be working together much better than it is at the moment. Fast forward a few weeks and we get to CMLS and the now infamous outline of issues delivered by Craig Cheatham, President and CEO of the Realty Alliance, a highly-respected network for many of North America's largest full service brokerages and their affiliated business. Many people in the audience were shocked with Craig's candor and level of frustration, but I'm not sure why. The types of issues he outlined are the types of issues that have been circling around in MLSs and Associations for a long time. I think the difference is that many groups were simply not listening or taking the conversation as seriously as the tone in which Craig delivered his eloquent presentation of the issues suggests they need to. The issues he outlines are complicated. Some are quite easy to rectify, but many of the issues are based on local tradition, not on sound business logic that considers today's consumers and the brokers that serve them. I have a theory as to why large brokers believe real estate organizations are in conflict with their business goals. I believe that the industry's extreme focus on satisfying the perceived needs of agents is getting in the way of progress.
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The MLS Battleground
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