Rightmove tech boss Tarah Lourens has revealed that the portal is preparing big changes that will see it move from a listings-only website to a service that ‘helps people move into their homes’.
Lourens has made the revelations during an interview with a computing trade magazine, giving agents a rare insight into the portal giant’s internal thinking.
Lourens (pictured) reveals that while her tech team has spent Covid helping get the portal and its customers through the lockdown and beyond, she is now looking to recruit 45 more staff to help build a new and apparently more transactional version of Rightmove.
“We’re growing and hiring 45 new roles into the team and starting to build products in new areas that we’re keen to explore and know we can make a difference in, but we haven’t had the capacity to do so until now,” she tells Computer Weekly.
Describing her tech roadmap as ‘transformational’, Lourens says Rightmove plans to expand its influence within the home moving process beyond listing properties and generating leads for agents.
Its aim, she reveals, is help turn what is often a range of paper-based communications, phone calls and emails into a ‘truly digital experience’.
“If letting agents, for example, don’t have to wait days for a reference and don’t have to spend time calling the reference provider repeatedly for updates, they can spend more time on other activities,” she says.
Her comment may alarm some agents who have long suspected Rightmove, which has largely avoided the kind of tech expansion achieved by Zoopla and more recently OnTheMarket, wants to expand outside property marketing.
Read more about Rightmove’s ‘home moving tech‘.