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New Boston Marches to its Own Drummer

PikeNet Dispatch

(June 5, 2003) Why Do We Need Standards Anyway? ... OK, I'm posing an inflammatory question. But isn't every real estate firm different? Won't each firm develop an information strategy tailored to its own operations? Yes, we face common challenges. And sharing our experiences helps us make better decisions. But our solutions and systems will be unique.

That message was reinforced last week in a conversation with Gary Hofstetter, CIO at New Boston Management Services, which manages an 11 million square foot portfolio spread across eleven states from Massachusetts to Illinois. As a company, New Boston provides most of its own management functions. So it's natural that Hofstetter wants to control as much of his own information technology as possible.

For example, New Boston has designed its own service order automation and energy management systems. One exception is the use of Metropole360's Brochure Builder, which enables New Boston to publish space available online and to broadcast eBrochures to its broker mailing list. But even here New Boston totally controls the posting of its information. And New Boston actually takes all of its own pictures, including 360-degree virtual tours, which are then uploaded to the web.

I smiled when Hofstetter said, "We're all new at this." But isn't that the truth? Almost a decade into the "Internet Revolution," we're all still grappling with the best solution for our individual companies. And hundreds of vendors continue to offer a vast array of products and services to suit our individual tastes. No one size (or standard system) fits all. What do you think?

--Peter Pike /

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