A lot of paper but also built spreadsheets and MS Access with lists of properties and suppliers. It worked ok, but we couldn’t retrieve data.
Our property managers can approve invoices, make and schedule work orders that show up on our phones as email notifications, unit turnover, everything. My priority is to reduce the vacancy loss when there is overturn. I also need to know are there children in the home? Is the contact info accurate? Those help me when I’m accessing a suite for repairs.
We have a kitchen manager who can manage the kitchen facility and all the food orders. Our CFO is our superuser with full administrative control of the program. All our accounting is done on Arcori. Our Tenant Relations Managers can also send out notices to tenants and do any of the rent acquisition required.
We first started with a live “dummy” system to try out without any private data. Tenant relations had to do the work to input all the related information for 480 units. We simultaneously switched to a call centre contract that also has access to Arcori. They can make work orders and have a very clear hierarchy of contacts and protocol based on type of call from emergency to complaint, etc.
I am still learning new things as we go. For instance, there are two different types of work orders in Arcori: regular and household. Household work orders allow a record of chargebacks to the tenant if the tenant caused damage, which can be kept on file to remove from the security deposit at the end of term.
There was a substantial input of time but it definitely simplifies things down the road. Now, Arcori can do all our rent reviews and rent calculations. We can show that they’ve done a means test. We can input rent criteria to determine the many varied levels of rent. It makes things much simpler – we can pull just about any data now.
It really helps with managing and scheduling staff. In property management, we were previously operating on an immediate basis for maintenance. Now we can retrieve and schedule multiple work orders at the same building and then schedule a blitz on a single day, which is less disturbance and fewer communications for greater efficiency.
Don’t get me wrong, you still have to keep up. Work orders have to be done every day. But now it’s much easier.