Property management software came on to the market to serve property managers and management companies with the end goal of saving everyone time and money. However, there are cases where certain software products have become so large and complex to the point they actually accomplish the opposite by taking up more time and wasting resources. Some involve limited integrations where property managers are forced to switch back and forth between a myriad of different tools thus resulting in productivity drain.
When software produces the opposite effect of injecting efficiency, saving time and freeing up resources, then it's a clear indication that you need to ask the question about whether you're using the right software for your condo management operations. The following three points are tell-tale signs you're due to strongly consider other software options or better yet, switch or upgrade software tools as soon as possible.
1. Lack of Reports or Insights
The best software tools out there allow you to derive insights on what is happening in the condo through an analytics dashboard or reports. If your tools have neither, then it becomes next to impossible to gain a clear understanding of what is happening because you would have to manually mash up the numbers to arrive at a conclusion. But then, which property manager has the time to do all that?
Ideally, the software tools you use would tell you, at a glance, say whether there has been an uptick on the number of work orders or what the trend looks like in terms of payment delinquencies. Look for a software that gives you these. You'll be grateful you did.
2. You’re managing far too many tools.
Typically in any organization, multiple software tools are used. In an ideal world, there would only be one which would encompass all of the features required and also integrate with one another. However, the reality is that there will be more than one software you likely use and that is fine. The problem appears when you are using too many disparate tools. The magic number number that we have seen in our years of experience with software in the property management space is to aim to use a maximum of three different software tools to manage a condo. The lower that number, the better. Anything above three or more would lead to issues such as:
- Duplication of work: Unnecessarily doing the work twice or unnecessarily producing a duplicate outcome only complicates simple tasks and makes it more burdensome for the already-busy property manager.
- Switching time: Time spent switching back and forth between different software is a major hassle and can become a significant drain on time that can be spent on more important tasks.
- Confusing records: Data that is presented on each tool can become fudged if there are multiple tools serving the same community. Which can you possibly rely upon with confidence?
The best solution to the above issues is to limit the number of software products used. For the limited tools you use, ensure that they are integrated with one another.
3. Your residents can’t serve themselves
There are a lot of folks involved in a condo community. The correct way to approach it is that it's one big living space that is shared by people from all walks of life. As such, there should be a collective effort by all involved to make it a good place to live. When it comes to software, we have seen that for some things, residents would rather self-serve.
Residents self-serving things like accessing financials, making condo fee payments and submitting work orders, just to name a few, is a huge time saver for the property manager. This creates very significant efficiencies for the staff by reducing manual work and communication with the residents.
The modern property management software includes these features and at an increasing rate. Make sure yours has these as well or else you're unnecessarily wasting time.
For more insights on whether your current software set up for managing condos can be improved, please feel free to reach out to our team anytime!