Date: 2008-08-21 Category: Profiles
Profile: Dezrez Services Ltd.
Dezrez is a specialist estate agency software company based at new premises Ethos, on Swanseas SA1 Waterfront development. Beginning life in 1999, Dezrez has gone on to become one of the
leading online front and back office solutions for estate agents, and now the software is successfully used by more than 1,750 estate agents across the UK and Europe.
Christine Williams spoke to Wilf Lewis, Managing Director of Dezrez, to find out more.
Whats the history of your company?
When Dezrez was first established in 1999 our key idea was to develop a portal. The portal market was not recognized at the time so we decided to investigate the markets potential. Further investigation outlined that other people were investing large sums of money to create what has become the huge portal industry we have today. Companies such as Rightmove were already on their way and had considerable financial backing. We realized that our future and our skills lay with developing tools for estate agencies to run their business.
We approached a 5 branch local estate agency who agreed to put property details on to our system through our web interface. We worked very closely with that agent, and over time they started asking us for more functionality. It was at this point that we spotted a gap in the market and that the internet would be an ideal way to deliver software to estate agents. From there we developed into a full online software solution. Since the start we have always listened to our agents - they have molded and shaped the product for the better.
What unique products/services does your company provide?
Dezrez is a complete online software solution for estate agents. Being online ensures that our customers data is stored, secured and easily accessible across their business network what ever their location. Upgrades are rapidly deployed and continually revised; amendments to their websites, advertising and marketing material are all completed in real time. Allowing the agent the freedom to focus on increasing their market share instead of having to worry about a complex IT system.
Dezrez is successfully used by more than 1,750 estate agents across the UK and Europe ranging in size from small independents to large multi-branch agencies and national franchises. Many of these small agencies have grown into larger multi offices over the years and we have grown with them. Our continual assessment of the service we provide has allowed us to enhance our product.
We will always continue to listen to our customers, develop through cutting edge technology and monitor the market. In essence, our target audience are estate agents that want to improve efficiency and stay ahead of its competition and in return we offer them professional branding & marketing, website integration, portal uploads, online HIPS and conveyancing services as well as other market leading functionalities.
Whats been the key to your success?
We have always listened to our customers - this has been and always will be the key to our success! Our product is "unique" because customer support is as much a part of the package as the functionality of the software we provide. Our team is both pro-active & reactive and we continually monitor strategies that allow us to accurately identify a customers needs. We are constantly developing and improving the way in which we assist our customers on a day to day basis, and this is crucial to the future success of Dezrez.
What one piece of outside technology software/hardware/other has benefited your company most?
The availability of broadband gave us a great foundation from which we could grow the business. Being an online solution meant that we could run an international business from Swansea. Many of our competitors were restricted to working in city locations, for us being web based, gave us flexibility. The advance of broadband took our software to another level.
Our support is provided remotely so any issues can be attended to immediately. We use technology that allows us to remotely link up to our customers PC in a "net meeting" this enables us to see the problem and fix it. This quick reaction to assessment gives us the ability to provide our customers with a product that meets their needs and requirements in an up to the minute time frame. We are always developing and improving the way in which we assist our customers on a day to day basis, and this is crucial to the future success of Dezrez.
What one piece of advice would you give to start-up companies in your field?
I would advise any new start up company to speak to their customers and establish their requirements, this is crucial. Since the start we have always listened to our agents - they have molded and shaped the product for the better. Our customers have contributed to our companys phenomenal achievement as their input has made the product more useable and sellable. When we started up as a company, the developing product was less functionally rich than our competitors however our customer service and the fact that our clients can always get hold of us by phone meant that we always had agents wanting to buy our software based on our reputation.
Where do you see your company going in the future?
Dezrez was the first successful provider of online estate agency software to the industry in 1999. With Internet based software proving to be the future in all industries, our rivals are now following our lead. We have a significant leg up on our competitors in our technology and continue to push forward in all areas.
Our recent success in offering a conveyancing service to our customers has highlighted the potential growth estate agents can make in offering additional services to their customers. We see our growth tied to our customers. If we can provide them with the means to offer better and wider services to their customer base we will grow together.
Currently we are taking tentative steps to look at financial services, insurance and other similar services. Our customers dictate the direction our future takes us! Our idea is to provide the estate agent with the means to be the complete "home move" service.
Find out more about Dezrez at www.dezrez.com
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