Property Management Tools: 3 Reasons You Need Standardized Processes
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Published May 6, 2021. Updated August 28, 2023.
A business process is a series of steps that companies take to achieve their business goals. Think of the everyday tasks you usually perform, including creating leases, contacting contractors to repair your properties, marketing your vacant homes, etc. — these are some of your processes.
You may not be conscious of taking some of these steps while running your property management company, but they exist. To grow your business and retain clients, property managers must refresh them regularly, even if it means investing in new property management tools to achieve that.
Today we talk about three reasons why property management companies need a standardized process for more success. We'll also cover why it's crucial to review your processes periodically and optimize training and procedures as your company evolves.
1. Provide Consistency from One Property to the Next
As a property manager, you probably manage anywhere from 20 to 500 units — maybe more, if you run a big operation. However, it doesn’t matter how many properties you manage; it's crucial to provide consistent service for one property as well as many properties.
To establish your brand and reputation in the market as an excellent property manager, you want to avoid some property owners or renters feeling that you play favorites, or that some properties seem to get better care than others. Property owners or tenants who feel like they aren't receiving the best services from your team may look elsewhere for management or rental services.
To establish consistent processes throughout your company for every property under your care, it's critical to enact thorough onboarding and training practices for all team members. This is essential for ensuring your team members provide consistent customer experiences across the board.
Remember to Review and Refresh
However, don't make the mistake that your processes are "one and done" after team member training or onboarding!
As your team and company grow, and as technology or best practices change for the property management industry, it's crucial to review and refresh your business processes. When you do this, be sure to update your documentation with clear guidelines for your processes when managing each rental property.
2. Outsource Operations Without Sacrificing Quality
Cutting costs is a significant reason why many businesses tend to outsource some of their tasks. As you learn how to become a successful property manager and your business grows, outsourcing could be a good option for your company as you invest in the right property management tools to serve owners and tenants well.
Some of the tasks you could outsource to freelancers or contractors (rather than hiring in-house employees) are graphic design, blogging and marketing, photo editing, and maintenance and repairs.
However, hiring freelancers or contractors is not always smooth sailing. This is where standardized business processes can help integrate outsourced aspects of your business into your daily operations.
By documenting and sharing your business processes, you ensure that people know what to do no matter how they fit into your organization. Incorporating these processes within your contracts will safeguard the quality of work done on behalf of your property management business.
With well-documented processes and internal and external resources that understand your procedures, you will provide excellent services no matter who is doing the work.
3. Save Valuable Time on Daily Tasks
Optimizing your business processes also saves valuable time and helps your company operate more efficiently. Efficiency helps boost your bottom line while improving the customer experience.
Did you know that many property management tasks can be automated? The first step to automating your tasks is to understand which tasks are routine without requiring much human intervention. Then, develop a process for automating those tasks.
The right property management tools help property managers automate routine tasks to improve productivity. Automation also helps streamline operations and reduce the potential for errors, missed tasks, or missed deadlines.
For example, consider your lease renewal process. An automated system that alerts your leasing specialist of an upcoming expiration means your team member can review the lease on time, make adjustments, and then deliver a renewal proposal to the tenants without missing the ideal timeframe for improving renewal rates. This process and automation can be applied to every property under your management.
Automation reduces manual workload workloads for your employees and frees them up to concentrate on core business operations.
Identifying Current Issues With Your Processes
So, how can you optimize and standardize processes for your property management company?
The first step is to determine if your processes need work. Review your processes and determine if:
You cannot define what your processes are
Your employees don’t understand why they are working and how their activities help you achieve your business objectives
You have no idea of what your business goals are and the steps you need to reach them
There is no documentation showing your business processes
Team members keep encountering bottlenecks when performing their business tasks
Your customers keep complaining about the way you do business
Your property management business is spending too much money on activity and resources, yet there is no accountability
If you find some (or all) of these issues with your procedures and how your team operates, it's time to resolve the issues with standardization and better processes.
Improving Your Business Processes
Once you know where the issues are within your property management operations, it's easier to deal with them.
You can improve business processes in various ways, including:
Documenting all current processes
Analyzing, redesigning, and standardizing your business processes to enhance efficiency
Communicating the change to every stakeholder
Updating documentation for each process
Automating tasks eliminates redundancy and repetition
It may seem like a lot of work to refresh your business process but don’t underestimate the importance of doing so.
If you're not sure how to get started with this task or how to improve or standardize the process for industry best practices and better efficiency, a property management consultant can help! Sometimes an outside view from an industry expert is the best way to identify shortcomings in your processes or training methods, and then implement improvements for better efficiency and success.
Improve Property Management Operations With Expert Help
Enhancing property management business operations is not an easy task, but it's essential to stay competitive in your market, retain clients, and grow your company!
We understand what it takes to conduct a deep dive into personnel, property management tools, processes, and training processes to help property managers experience more success! If you would like to learn more about improving your business processes and how we can help, reach out to Real-Time Consulting Services.