UKPA Seminar - ‘Lessons from other Industries'

LMRE attended the first UK PropTech Association Seminar of 2020 on 'Lessons from other Industries’!


We had a great afternoon at the UKPA’s first seminar of 2020! The theme  of the seminar was ‘Lessons from other Industries’ – namely the finance and legal industries.

The event was sponsored and hosted by Taylor Wessing at their office in Chancery Lane.  We enjoyed catching up with our friends at Coyote, and Heitman, and meeting new contacts too!

The seminar began with an intro from the UKPA, and from @Martin Cottrill from Taylor Wessing. The aim of the discussion was to glean ideas from the legal and finance industries, learn about the tech they are implementing and how that can relate to and help grow the proptech industry.

We began with ‘Lessons from Legal’, with the panel being made up of Sally, Joe, Ruth, Martin, and Chris from Barclays. When discussing where the legal industry is in the tech cycle, Sally likened the legal industry to being at around the improving the cd player stage, rather than the Spotify stage! This got a few laughs!

The panel discussed that it is hard for the legal industry to adopt the ‘fail fast’ approach to startups and tech due to the nature of the work that they do! The industry must become braver in order to move forward faster.

Ruth mentioned that keeping their employees happy is one of their big pushes for tech advances, as staff coming through the business want to be seeing this change, and seeing their jobs evolve and being made more efficient.

Sally discussed whether a law firm could be made into a software, but the panel all agreed that whilst much of the work could be done via a software, there was still very much a place for advice, human interaction, and interpretation.

Finally, the panel discussed what would ‘Spotify’ for the legal sector look like. The ideas all seemed to involve some sort of a digital vault with all the info needed for a transaction, which could be accessed at any time.

We then moved onto the ‘Lessons from Finance’

The panel was made up of – Tom, Austin, Sohail, Martin, and Dharmesh. They discussed how the finance industry is actually one of the must ‘disrupted’ industries and has had huge tech advancements. Austin is one of the ‘disruptor’s’ himself. He mentioned there is a still a long way to go, but that the digital journey really matters to the customer. He does however see that the customers are still keen to receive human interaction and that it seems to give them reassurance!

Dharmesh discussed how DBS have successful dropped the cost of customer service by 35% but using a chat bot, which is huge.

The panel discussed the growth in the new banks in the UK, and how this was so needed. Before the regulators opened up banking, there was little competition and the same main players in the banking industry. There are new banks opening every day, but the panel agreed that the ones which will survive are the ones which analyse the customer segment, look at who their customers are, and what they want.

Finally, the panel agreed that the property world is where the finance world was a few years ago, it is tightly regulated, and needs a ground swell of opinions to change the industry.

Thanks to the UKPA, Taylor Wessing, and all of the panellists for a great and informative afternoon!

Hannah Taylor

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