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By Dr. Martin Oliver

RISMEDIA, Feb. 13, 2007-The growing lack of education and skills prevalent in a large portion of today's real estate industry is one of the top 10 key trends impacting real estate. The surge of new agents during the most recent housing boom has resulted in a 100% increase in the number of Realtors in the past five years; many of whom lack the productivity skills and training needed to be successful; especially in a more normal market, according to the 2007 Swanepoel TRENDS Report (

During the last five years, the recruiting and subsequent retention of agents was relatively easy given the extraordinary influx of new agents. But their failure rate was also very high. A recent survey undertaken by RealtyU revealed that approximately 80% of all new agents do not renew their license. At the same time, a widely used statistic indicates that 7% of all agents do 93% of the business. Now we all know the 80/20 rule, but 93/7 is extremely distorted.

This lack of ongoing training and education is most likely the result of the independent contractor nature of agents and the lack of response by associations and brokers is due to their lack of resources and knowledge.

So how do brokers bridge the gap and develop their most important asset?
The RealtyU Group has stepped forward to consolidate comprehensive education, training and career enhancing components together into one solution-The Career Development Center.

This private-labeled online university is available through an exclusive portal, which is linked to the existing company Web sites. The Career Development Center enables brokers to offer a complete career enhancement solution to their agents under the auspices of their existing corporate brand and identity.

The following educational services for agents are a part of the solution:

– An individual Web-based business planning tool for each agent
– Weekly marketing to-do lists and accountability tracking
– Over 100 hours of skills-based classes covering such topics as new agent training, negotiating, prospecting, farming and Internet marketing
– An online real estate mentoring library with over 5,000 pages of the exact money-making strategies developed by over 200 of the industry's top producers
– Access to more than 1,000 online licensing and continuing education (CE) classes
– Online access to a wide range of industry designations such as ABR, ASR and C-CREC
– Special reports covering such topics as customer acquisition, profitability, bundled services, business planning and technology

Brokers also receive a bonus. The Career Development Center incorporates a special Web-based business-planning tool uniquely designed for them and a selection of more than 20 different skills-based classes regarding recruiting, sales meetings, retention and management.

This valuable one-stop Career Development Center is available for all sizes of real estate brokerage companies but is best suited for small to medium size brokerages.

Each online university resides at a unique domain name address and is securitized to ensure that brokers can manage the access rights of agents joining or leaving their company. Each broker also has the ability to customize the homepage of their online university by adapting various options in the system to suit their individual needs, provide a message from the broker, and even send their agents to the broker's own events or consumer Web site.

Dr. Martin Oliver is the deputy executive director for the Real Estate Apprentice Foundation, a national non-profit foundatiion created to assist newly licensed agents entering the real estate industry to succeed. For more information, please visit or call (949) 600-7170 for a demo.