From theory to reality—technology makes business better

The World Economic Forum brings together different perspectives for one snowy January week a year.

December 16, 2019

The theme this year is Globalization for the Fourth Industrial Revolution (“4IR”), referring to the massive shifts in business models across industries and most every company due to digitization and AI. While 4IR seemed forward-looking when introduced a few years ago, the pace of digital growth and innovation is increasing rapidly and this year the discussions have shifted to execution of strategies, and the implications to companies, employees and society.

We see this move from theory to practical applications in meetings with clients, and in our daily operations at JLL. The focus has moved from should we, or can we use AI and other technology, to how best to use it, and how to accelerate its impact. We’re shifting from simply collecting available data to actively driving what we should collect, how we protect it and how we use it. We’re leveraging data to improve everything from enhanced client insights, business decisions and operations to how people experience their physical work environments. These practical applications of technology and data help drive operational efficiency, productivity and enhanced business models—all top of mind issues for our clients and JLL.

As we participate in meetings about digital advances that our clients and prospects are making, and listen to their challenges in this time of transition, I realize the leadership role JLL plays as a trusted advisor. We combine our deep real estate experience with our growing digital capabilities, tools we develop directly and solutions we bring our clients through the most cutting-edge proptech in the industry. Whether companies are setting a technology vision, harnessing the power of data, or applying new tools to be more productive, we are helping them use data and technology to make their real estate work harder. Ultimately, it’s exciting to be at the forefront of proptech, to help clients make better and faster decisions about their real estate, and be more productive, so they can compete and win in the 4IR world.

Greg O’Brien is JLL’s Americas CEO.

For more on our presence at the World Economic Forum, please visit JLL’s Davos 2019 page.