As we continue to move into the age of artificial intelligence and automation, it’s becoming increasingly difficult to find a task or industry that isn’t improved by new technology. The apartment industry is no exception, especially when it comes to improving communications between residents and the property’s team of employees.
Perhaps the most important team members to the residents are the property’s maintenance staff. In this new age of automation and AI there are incredible ways that maintenance practices in the apartment industry can become more efficient than ever before. Below we explore 3 ways technology can differentiate a property’s maintenance staff.
1. Work Order Notification
Traditionally, when a resident has a work order they submit the request with the front office and that request is then sent to the maintenance team. This system works great, except when it doesn’t. Now with mobile technology it’s possible to submit work orders directly to the maintenance team. Notifications appear on their mobile phones and they are able to pick up work order requests in real time. For larger properties this can be a huge time saver for the front office by cutting out the middle-man and the maintenance crew by reducing the need to stop by the office before tending to their next maintenance issue.
2. Resident Feedback
Chatbots are becoming common in businesses that want customer feedback. This same technology can be used to access a resident’s level of satisfaction with a maintenance request. Once a maintenance work order is complete, a resident can receive a text on their mobile phone asking them to rate the job that was done in areas such as quickness, friendliness, and effectiveness. This type of feedback can be essential in managing an efficient and accountable maintenance team.
3. Maintenance Accountability and Performance Measurement
Maintenance is a big part of the cost of running a successful multifamily property. By implementing a tracking software for maintenance work orders and resident feedback, a property manager can see clear reports, patterns, and identify places of weakness. Maintenance tracking software can save a property a substantial amount of money by identifying and clarifying recurring problems or poorly performing maintenance team members.
On the flip side, this type of software can highlight top performing maintenance team members that might be due for a promotion or a raise in pay to keep them feeling appreciated and loyal to their positions.
There are many companies that specialize in maintenance automation software. These tools can benefit a large, multi-property company or an individually-owned apartment community. It’s time to upgrade your maintenance staff and their capabilities in 2019, and the main reason may not be what you think!
4. Employee Retention
Millennials, today’s driving work force, prefer working with technology over tedious paperwork. According to a survey done my Multifamily Insiders (https://www.multifamilyinsiders.com/multifamily-blogs/insights-into-the-future-of-property-maintenance) it was reported that many millennial maintenance team members have left previous maintenance positions because of the lack of technological advancements in their day-to-day work activities.
Technology is not just for improving the efficiency of your current maintenance team, but it’s also for ensuring the future of your maintenance workforce.