ServusConnect Blog

The Smartphone Dilemma in Multifamily Apartment Operations

Jun 27, 2018 12:46:59 PM / by Jamie Wohlschlegel posted in maintenance, technology, multifamily, apartment, operations, smartphone

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READ TIME: 5 Minutes

In multifamily apartment operations, moving maintenance and other field service jobs away from paper-based, manual business processes and over to mobile, app-based, digital workflows is a major initiative for 2018/19.

Enabling massive productivity boosts for field service staff, significant improvement in asset repair records, and enhancing resident engagement through automated service notifications, field mobility can be a major win for multifamily operators.

Before that can happen, there is one nagging dilemma that senior management has to address:

"Do we provide a smartphone for field service staff or expect them to bring-your-own-device (BYOD)?"

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Who is Alexa, and what is she doing in my house?!

Jun 7, 2018 3:51:31 PM / by Mel Bethune posted in maintenance, technology, apartment, apartments, residents, smart speakers, amazon alexa, alexa, google home, virtual assistants

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Read-time: 3 minutes; 5 if you watch the videos

Unless you've been hiding under a rock, you already know that Alexa* is Amazon’s virtual personal assistant that is gaining a massive following and importance in the marketplace. With over 30,000 skills, Amazon is aiming to make your life, and how you interact with your home, easier with voice-requested (and response) services. Check out what they're doing with hand-free home entertainment & streaming:

 

 

This is Gonna be HUGE!

Alexa is just one of a suite of smart home technologies that have emerged in the past few years, and the numbers are staggering! Here are a few data points:

  • In 2018, the smart speaker market is expected to be worth $2.68 billion
  • The smart speaker market is expected to grow at 34.4% CAGR until 2023
  • Amazon owns 52% of the smart speaker market share
  • Amazon has sold more than 20 million Alexa enabled devices through Q3 2017

And this isn't just Amazon doing damage - Google is gaining ground quickly with their Home and Home-mini devices.

 

"Smart speakers continue to be the world’s fastest-growing consumer technology segment, with year-on-year growth in Q1 2018 of 210% as shipments reached 9 million units." - Canalys, May 2018

Opportunity for Apartment Operators

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5 Reasons for Better Apartment Repair Documentation

May 31, 2018 3:25:47 PM / by Jamie Wohlschlegel posted in maintenance, technology, apartment, documentation, repair

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READ TIME - 4 Minutes

(Author's note: As the CEO of ServusConnect, its my job to stay close to our clients; this is important to not only gauge satisfaction with our product, but also to inspire innovation in our platform by staying close to the operational trends, situations and experiences that multifamily operators deal with on a daily basis. A topic that surfaced during one such visit with a regional management team of a large multifamily owner-operator, was "the importance of repair documentation". Special thanks to Shannon Brummett of GSC and his NC-based regional management team for their insights on this topic.)

 

Maintenance operations is the lifeblood of apartment property management. Yes, leasing makes a great first impression and gets residents in the door, but maintenance retains them. One multifamily CEO recently expressed this during his interview on the Multifamily Matters radio show in Houston, TX when he indicated that "maintenance is the #1 reason why residents don't renew".

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Your residents have something to say, but are you giving them a voice?

May 22, 2018 2:20:00 PM / by Jamie Wohlschlegel posted in multifamily, apartment, residents, feedback, notification, communication

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READ TIME: 2 Minutes

We all know how important online reviews have become in attracting new residents.

 

We also know what it's like to be flamed on an apartment online review site by a frustrated resident who claims you "never listened or resolved my issue on multiple attempts".

 

The reality is that ~20% of the time there is a disconnect between a resident's expectation of what the issue is and what your technicians actually fixed.

 

Regardless of best intentions, you could still be missing the mark.

 

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Think your multifamily maintenance staff can't learn tech? Think again

May 10, 2018 4:35:39 PM / by Jamie Wohlschlegel posted in maintenance, technology, multifamily, apartment, apartments, mobility

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READ TIME - 3 Minutes

The thought of giving your multifamily maintenance technicians something new to learn, especially technology, is not a hill many apartment operators want to climb.

Why is this?

Our knee jerk reaction is to think about the tech who still has a flip-phone, or the one who doesn't speak English well, or the conspiracy theorist on your team that thinks you want to track their every move.

It seems there is a general stigma in multifamily that our maintenance team members are not capable of learning or using technology on a daily basis to do their job.

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