Houwzer is a modern real estate agency founded in Philadelphia offering full-service brokerage without charging a listing commission. They rebuilt the real estate brokerage model from the ground up with technology and a salaried team of experts. Home sellers save an average of $11,000 with their full-service listing agents, while home buyers trust their salaried team’s focus on service, not commissions.
Houwzer CTO Greg Phillips had a problem: “I was doing a lot of different analyses and manually reporting on each of them on an ad hoc basis,” he explains. To solve that problem, he knew he needed a way to organize company data into one location and cut down on manual reporting—he needed business intelligence (BI).
His search for a BI platform ended with Grow. “Grow was a place I could organize each of my information sources,” he said. What Phillips likes even more about Grow is that it offers him live updates on company data and creates high visibility around the office, so the team knows where the company stands and how they are performing.
Houwzer has two main agent teams, a buyers team and a listing team. With the help of Grow, each of these teams can clearly visualize their pipelines. Using a comprehensive performance graph that shows each agent how many deals they have in each pipeline stage, the teams can watch deals progress to agreement in real time. “It has really helped to create competition among our agents,” Phillips says.
Grow also gives Houwzer the ability to visually track conversion rates from leads to closed deals based on lead source. “We can see how many leads we had from each source, how many opportunities we got from them, how many opportunities led to closed deals—all of those conversion rates organized and automatically updated,” Phillips explains. “That means we can understand, based on historical conversion rates, how many deals we can expect to get out of new leads. That’s hugely valuable to us.”
To manage the financials for multiple office locations, the Houwzer accounting team had to gather time-consuming manual reports from each office throughout the year. But Grow took a lot of the manual work out of that process.
As Phillips explains, “We used the Grow dashboard to report and communicate our financial information to our accounting team so they could use it for their reporting. Now they log in to Grow when they need the information and pull it.” With Grow, the time and effort employees previously spent gathering and creating reports can now be used working on other projects.
Another benefit for the Houwzer team? Keeping everyone on the same page. Phillips said, “With Grow, everyone knows where to look when they need a number. Having everything is one place has really cut down on our communication overhead because people know where to go to find the information they need.” Since Grow updates automatically, anyone on the team can get the up-to-date data they need when they need it without having to pester someone else to get that information.
As a leader, Phillips has seen how getting data out of silos and into the hands of employees has increased accountability throughout the Houwzer team. He says, “Every day I am evangelizing data-driven decision making. … All the numbers are out there, so the technology and the transparency that we have to show progress is huge for us. The data describes what we are doing so it keeps everyone accountable, and everyone can see if things are trending well or if we need to make some changes.”
When compared with life before Grow, “Implementing BI really isn’t a question,” Phillips explains. “You have to look at the data for your decisions, because if you go with your opinions, your decisions could be way off-base. … If you’re not looking at your business analytically, I don’t know how you expect to grow or manage it intelligently.”