The juggling act that property managers experience every day can sometimes leave clients frustrated – and PMs struggling to maintain productivity in the midst of constant interruptions. Sharon Whorlow gives advice on how you can streamline processes to get the most out of your time.
As property managers, we live with a palpable frustration caused by clients, often born from a lack of immediate response and access to accurate and timely tenancy information. We want to offer the best service to everyone, all of the time. As a result of this juggle, our productivity can suffer as we continually field interruptions.
The essence of our job is building relationships through communication and great customer service. Setting up quality communication remains essential in building and preserving relationships, rapport and trust. However, in this fast paced industry where the speed and quality of information usually makes or breaks a deal, we need to be smart in how we spend our time. Not all queries require face time and can, in fact, be solved instantly and seamlessly, without detracting from other priorities. I’ve long noticed three common communication concerns among property managers and clients, and found a simple, easy-to-apply solution to empower your tenants, which in turn, empowers you to be more effective.
1. Lack of Information
Problem: Lack of information readily available for tenants and landlords whenever they need it. This usually results in a frustrating and time consuming back and forth, telephone tag or email game that is neither productive nor enjoyable for either party.
Solution: Today, there are online platforms that readily enable us to access real-time information with nothing more than a username and password. Having a wealth of readily available information online makes life a lot easier for everyone involved.
By providing info online, we can eliminate common queries, misunderstandings or lost information. Like a handy little black book, a myriad of information is permanently stored on the online property management platform so clients feel well informed and have access to queries anytime, anywhere.
2. Lack of immediate responses
Problem: Tenants tend to have a misinformed perception that they are not a high priority for their property managers due to a lack of speed and execution of responses to their queries. In your time as a property manager, you have probably experienced a tenant (or several!) who feel they are not being listened to or taken care of by you, and voice their feelings of neglect.
While this is a common theme across many industries, we know that for us, this is simply not the case. There is often an absence of understanding among tenants about a property manager’s daily priorities, hectic schedule and full workload.
Solution: If a customer expresses dissatisfaction about your response time, it is up to you to find a way to remedy the situation and ensure communication is up to speed. After all, we are here to service the needs of our clients and instil in them a sense of trust so they can depend on us for assistance.
Perhaps it is more convenient for you to email them, or pick up the phone. However, nothing beats a ‘login’ style system where information can be uploaded and accessed 24/7 by property manager, landlord, real estate agent and tenant. This is the most effective way to make the flow of communication convenient for both transmitter and receiver.
3. Interruptions and productivity
Problem: Property management is a highly interruptive job. We are constantly under the pump and juggling several tasks at once. Between tenants and landlords, there is always a question being asked or a request being expressed, at almost all times of the day. These interruptions break our flow of concentration, decrease our output of work and affect our level of productivity.
Solution: With an influx of distractions, property managers often need to block out interruptions for a period of time to complete high priority tasks. With mobile and remote access to online information, a better work flow is possible. It will reduce the calls to those of a more complex nature and allow you to focus on what’s really important.
Technology is the way of our communication future, and this is no different in property management. Implementing mobile technologies is the most convenient and time efficient solution to help you do more business, faster and better.
Empowering your clients with an online, real-time, centralised information sharing system will in turn empower you to increase your productivity and strength of relationships with your clients.
About the author
Sharon Whorlow is the co-founder of property management app, MyMobilePM. With over 25 years’ realtor and property management experience, Sharon is also Director of First National Sunbury Property Management, an author, philanthropist and entrepreneur.
MyMobilePM is a downloadable app that provides a hand held mobile information system to save time, minimise disruptions and maximises focus on servicing the customers of real estate professionals.