Diversifying digital business.

REA Group scales real estate business with the potential of reaching millions with electronic signatures from Adobe Sign.

Binyan Studios

Established

1995

Employees: 1,500
Melbourne, Australia
www.rea-group.com

Improved speed through automation

Objectives

Deliver a superior customer experience through digital transformation

Stay competitive by expanding business and services to new customers and markets

Create internal efficiencies to improve productivity

Results

Convenient signing experience for customers

Improved speed through automation

Integrated electronic signatures into platforms

Analyse needs of 50 million digital visitors


“We’ve had extremely positive customer feedback. Customers find Adobe Sign very easy to use because they can sign from any device with just a click.”

 

Norm Duce
Executive Manager of Business Services, REA Group


Reaching property buyers worldwide

When looking for homes and commercial properties across Australia and Asia, millions turn to realestate.com.au,
iproperty.com.my and other market-leading real estate portals managed by REA Group. From its humble beginnings in a garage in 1995, REA Group is now a public listed company that has grown into a multinational digital property specialist that helps change the way the world experiences property.

REA Group is expanding its business in two major ways. First, the company has a growing international presence, particularly in the booming Asian real estate market. Second, the company is diversifying revenue streams with new lines of business, such as home loans and financial services and lifestyle guidance.

“Real estate is always a competitive field and if we want to stay ahead, we need to continue providing seamless customer services even as our company grows,” says Norm Duce, Executive Manager of Business Services at REA Group. “With new lines of business such as financial services, the amount of administrative work that we’ll be taking on will grow exponentially. We need to make life easier for our internal staff so that they have more time to give customers personal attention.”

One of the first areas that REA Group identified for improvement was the sales contract process. Sales contracts include subscriptions and depth listings for real estate agents, as well as display advertising for advertisers. For many agents and advertising customers, signing the contract is one of the first major interactions with REA Group. Reducing the processing time for these sales contracts would allow REA Group to push listings and advertisements onto the site much faster, but it also provides a good first impression for customers through the fast and easy onboarding experience. 

REA Group decided to transform the manual, paper-based contract process with modern and convenient electronic signatures. The company chose to deploy Adobe Sign, an Adobe Document Cloud solution, to integrate with proprietary and third-party systems for smooth e-signatures. “We chose Adobe Sign because we have great respect for the Adobe brand and Adobe Sign is a leader in the electronic signature space,” says Duce. “Adobe made it very easy for us to get set up and start using electronic signatures straightaway.”    

Accelerating contract completion

Previously, the REA Group sales team processed all contracts manually. A sales rep would mail a paper contract or email an electronic document that the customer would need to print, scan and send back. Working with ink signatures was not only time consuming, it also increased the chances of manual errors when the sales representatives copied information into the contracts or updated the customer files.

Using Adobe Sign, sales representatives now spend much less time processing contracts. Customers typically sign and return these contracts in just 90 minutes. REA Group enhanced the process even further by deploying Salesforce CRM for automation and integrating Adobe Sign for even greater efficiency. Through integrations between Salesforce and Deals Suite, a proprietary system, customer data is fed directly from the Salesforce record into the contract, improving data accuracy. The Adobe Sign integration allows sales representatives to initiate contracts from a single dashboard and send them to customers for e-signature. This eliminates the need to switch between programmes, resulting in a smooth contract creation experience.

The electronic signature process with Adobe Sign is convenient for customers. “We’ve had extremely positive feedback from customers,” says Duce. “Customers find Adobe Sign very easy to use because they can sign from any device with just a click. About 80% of our contracts are now signed using the Adobe Sign workflow and that number is growing every day.”


“Adding electronic signatures to our onboarding process with Adobe Sign gives a great first impression of our company to new hires. It was so easy to roll out and gain adoption for Adobe Sign because everyone sees the benefits.”

 

Norm Duce
Executive Manager of Business Services, REA Group


Bringing efficiencies company-wide

REA Group sees potential to scale Adobe Sign dramatically and bring efficiencies into all areas of the business. The company is building Adobe Sign into procurement workflows and internal tools for product and pricing solutions. REA Group is also planning to use Adobe Sign to streamline its end-to-end mortgage services, which has the potential to quickly grow the number of electronically signed documents into the millions.

The HR department is taking advantage of the native integration between Adobe Sign and Workday to add electronic signatures to required documents in onboarding packages, including acceptance of employment contracts and policies.

“Adding electronic signatures to our onboarding process with Adobe Sign gives a great first impression of our company to new hires,” says Duce. “It was so easy to roll out and gain adoption for Adobe Sign because everyone sees the benefits.”

Growth through customer insight

In addition to Adobe Sign, REA Group uses Adobe Analytics, part of Adobe Analytics Cloud in Adobe Experience Cloud, as part of its digital transformation to enable better customer experiences. “Adobe Analytics allows us to get a more sophisticated understanding of what customers and consumers do on our digital properties,” says Tomas Varavsky, Chief Engineer at REA Group. “That insight gives our internal teams the information they need to deliver better communications, marketing campaigns and digital experiences.”

For instance, REA Group noticed that more than half of the 53 million visitors going to its property website, realestate.com.au, each month were from mobile devices*. The company is now investing heavily in mobile functionality to improve its small screen experience.

Using analytics data, REA Group also noticed a new type of visitor to its websites: consumers who weren’t intending to buy a house but were instead looking at houses for inspiration. Based on this information, the company added a Lifestyle section to its web portals. This digital magazine delivers articles and videos that focus on style, organisation and renovation ideas for consumers. 

“We’re proud of the success we’ve achieved with Adobe,” says Duce. “We’re finding new ways to better serve our customers and expand across new and existing businesses.”

* Nielsen Market Intelligence: Home & Fashion Monthly Visits, October 2017 (excluding apps)

Let’s talk about what Document Cloud can do for your business.

Let’s talk about what Document Cloud can do for your business.