Automation is changing the game for professionals across all industries, and the property sector is no exception. Sophisticated new automation tools provide block managers with ways to save time, increase compliance, and improve resident engagement. But only if you know how to use them.
We spoke to Nigel Glen, Executive Chair of The Property Institute, about the top three ways block managers should be using automation to make their daily lives easier. With simple applications and tangible results, here are three ways you can dip your toe into the tech of tomorrow.
1. Sending reminders
You’ve got 30 days to complete your building insurance, six months before your next Fire Risk Assessment, and three weeks until an upcoming system check. You want to stay compliant, but keeping all of these long-term tasks at the forefront of your mind is a challenge in and of itself.
This is where automated reminders come in. Using the right software, you can automatically set notifications and reminders for upcoming compliance tasks. You know when you need to start planning and organising the work, the dates you need to be onsite, and the assessment deadline.
Receive your reminders through the portals that suit you - whether that’s SMS, email, or a dedicated software hub. With automation in place, your most important tasks remain front and centre, while nothing slips through the cracks.
2. Communication and updates
Each repair, maintenance task, or risk assessment comes with a group of stakeholders. Whether it’s the landlord, the leaseholders, the residents, or your contractors, everyone has a part to play in getting the job done. As a block manager, it’s your responsibility to make sure everyone is kept in the loop.
With clear communication, you could avoid ending up with irate leaseholders, confused contractors, and completely unaware residents. But how can you keep everyone in the loop without making the same phone call three times?
Managing your communications through systems such as Fixflo ensure that whenever a job is progressed, all the necessary information is automatically passed on to stakeholders. Set up SMS notifications or keep everyone updated through your property management dashboard.
3. Task management
There’s no shortage of spinning plates in the Block Management world. To avoid any cracked china, you need a quick and easy way of tracking and prioritizing your tasks. You could put together a to-do list the old-fashioned way, but relying solely on memory is often how important or urgent tasks get left behind.
Instead, use automation to create up-to-date task lists ordered by priority. Leading software platforms allow you to use colour coding to indicate the urgency of tasks; you can also set up further automation within those tasks so that after a set amount of time, the item goes from middle to high priority.
Automating your to-do list like this means that the most important tasks will be at the top of your list, avoiding damage to the property, non-compliance, and negative interactions with stakeholders. Plus, you will spend less time managing your work, which means more time to get it done and give yourself a well-earned break.
It's time to let go of unnecessary admin
Repetitive admin is not only time-consuming, but it's also difficult to keep track of when the tasks you have to repeat are three, six or even twelve months apart. As Nigel points out, “Managing this work effectively is vital because everything from Section 20s to smoke alarm checks come under a regularly repeating schedule of compliance.”
“Automation reduces your workload and improves the quality of your service by reducing the possibility of human error and giving you the headspace to work on other projects. These tools are becoming more popular and widely used within the property industry — managers and agents that don’t make effective use of them could risk being left behind,” he concludes.
You can unlock the benefits of automation and free yourself from repetitive admin with Fixflo. Discover more today.