The International Data Corporation expects mobile workers to account for nearly three-quarters of the total U.S. workforce by the end of 2020. With the onset of recent world events, changes to the work environment have occurred at an accelerated rate. Most industries now need to conduct some or all of their business remotely. Real estate pros must shift their business to a virtual world while continuing to provide first-class customer service. As you move your client meetings online—juggling virtual showings, open houses, and closings—how do you know you have the right computer, accessories, and collaboration tools to transition to remote work smoothly? Lenovo, a leading tech manufacturer, shares tips and info on how to pick the right equipment to make this shift seamless.
What do you need to ensure success when working from home?
Consider these points regarding the type of computer and productivity and collaboration tools that will support you most.
Performance. You need a computer that has power under the hood. The CPU (processor), RAM (amount of memory and storage space), and internal parts determine your PC’s performance. At least 8 GB of RAM and an i5 Intel® Core™ processor are recommended if you’re looking to do anything more than simple file viewing or word processing, including virtual home tours or number-crunching for offers or sale prices. Most quality computers can be purchased with upgraded options, even if these requirements are not standard on the model you’re eyeing.
Design and portability. Keep an eye out for a device with ergonomic features, such as a full-sized keyboard with a numeric keypad or a blue light reduction mode for long periods of screen time. If you like to stay active and move from room to room while you work, a lightweight, slim laptop or 2-in-1 is perfect. You also want to consider battery life of at least five to six hours to help you stay mobile.
Productivity and collaboration tools. Working from home is all about staying productive and staying connected. When you’re setting up your home office, consider productivity enhancers like a second monitor, webcam, and a headset. Conferencing tools, including videoconferencing technology, can help you stay connected with clients and coworkers and keep you in the know about industry news and market trends.
What type of computer works for you?
Finding what’s right for you means taking a look at your day-to-day remote work habits, as each form factor offers different advantages.
- Today’s laptops are slim, lightweight, and portable and have powerful processing capabilities to run specialized programs. Laptops are available at various price points to fit any budget, from affordable, entry-level PCs like Chromebooks, which start in the $100 range, to premium Ultrabooks that are faster, sleeker, and lighter than the typical laptop. Whether the market dictates you work from home or allows you to do in-person showings, open houses, or closings, you need a computer with power to crunch the numbers and calculate offers.
- A 2-in-1 laptop—sometimes called a “convertible laptop”—is a laptop-tablet combination. It can be the best of both worlds. It’s versatile and can be used in various modes, including laptop, tablet, tent, and stand. This can make things easier when reviewing a contract with the client, watching a video tour, or looking up a listing. The 2-in-1 laptops typically have touchscreen displays with stylus pen functionality, which is great if you like to take quick notes while on a conference call.
What are the best computers and productivity tools for real estate pros?
As the workforce continues to shift to a remote work environment, there is no shortage of professional PCs or tools that can support your needs. When researching the best laptops and productivity and collaboration tools, you’ll find Lenovo is here to help you navigate your evolving technology needs.
ThinkPad X1 Carbon 14-inch. The flagship laptop in the premium ThinkPad X1 lineup, which has been named “the best business laptop” by LaptopMag.com, is the definition of an Ultrabook. Ultraslim, ultraportable, and ultrasleek, it easily checks out in all of the main laptop buying criteria. Weighing less than 2.5 pounds and offering a battery life of 15 hours, this 6th-generation PC is a sure choice for any role in real estate.
ThinkPad T490. This computer has the power you need, equipped with a 10th-generation i7 Intel® Core™ processor. Its new narrow-bezel design makes it slim and, weighing only 3.2 pounds, it gives you the portability you want. It boasts enhanced security and privacy features that keep your data secure, and up to 16 hours of battery life gives you confidence that it will last throughout your workday.
2-in-1 laptop: ThinkPad X1 Yoga. It’s an easy guess that this would be one of the best 2-in-1 laptops out there. It has the flexibility of a Yoga with the 360-degree hinge and the business acumen of the Think X1. This laptop is extremely lightweight, sleek, and powerful. It features a garaged stylus pen, which is perfect for when you want jot down onscreen notes. This razor-thin 2-in-1 can easily move from virtual showing to closing to the occasional in-person client meeting.
Productivity and Collaboration Tools
As you set up your home office, consider the selection of accessories Lenovo offers, including monitors, webcams, and headsets. We also offer laptops, desktops, and workstations with video and audio features that provide microphones for 360-degree reception and a 4-meter far-field performance that enhances your conferencing tools.
Now more than ever, it is important to have the right work-from-home technology to ensure your success. Exclusive discounts on our entire product line are available to members of the National Association of REALTORS® through the REALTOR Benefits® Program. Learn more at nar.realtor/realtorbenefits/lenovo, or start shopping now at www.lenovo.com/NAR. Personal assistance finding the right technology is also available by chat on the website or by phone at 800-426-7235 ext. 4827.