In our previous article, Strength in Specialisation, we explored why the right combination of people, standardised processes and solutions are so critical when empowering portfolio managers to shift from reactive to proactive management. We also demonstrated how those who successfully align client needs and risks with a tangible value offering (delivered through skilled staff, world class service and technology) are able to unlock unparalleled efficiency and transparency.
We’re confident that you’ll agree proactive property management is a win-win for all stakeholders. But did you know that current market trends also demonstrate a clear demand for this type of property service? Property professionals willing and able to make the big shift from reactive to proactive management are finding extraordinary opportunities at their fingertips.
These are the major trends driving those opportunities:
- More regulations mean more pressure on clients to manage risk. STSMA, POPIA, OHS, community meetings and more, all add up to a considerable compliance burden.
- Growing demand for property asset management is placing an emphasis on property expertise over and above traditional admin services.
- Trustees and owners are more informed and have higher expectations from property professionals.
- Compliance and operational value are now baseline requirements from clients.
- Transparency is key, with clients demanding consistent communication, feedback and convenient access to information.
Of course, tapping into the opportunities these trends are creating takes more than just good intentions. You’ll also need a careful combination of specialist roles, customised workflows and best-fit solutions.
Here’s how to get that right.
Recognise and capitalise on opportunities
Step 1: Identify key touchpoints
Touchpoints are moments in which a portfolio manager can really shine, share and showcase his/her expertise. They’re moments in which value can not only be delivered, but also spotlighted for clients.
By identifying these touchpoints within your own processes and interactions, it’s possible to start strategically maximising their impact.
Step 2: Standardise workflows
Once you’ve identified your key touchpoints, you can start exploring the processes that contribute to their successful execution. We’re talking before, during and after the touchpoint itself.
Chances are, there are several workflows that could be standardised or even automated. This empowers portfolio managers to deliver consistent – and exceptional – value using a fraction of the time, energy and headspace.
Step 3: Equip portfolio managers
Designing best practice workflows is one thing. Equipping portfolio managers to make full use of them is another.
The best results are invariably achieved when property professionals are empowered with the knowledge and skills to execute their necessary workflows, as well as solutions that support and streamline their efforts.
In our experience, it’s this combination of people, processes and solutions that truly enables portfolio managers to proactively plan, manage and report on key touchpoints.
Step 4: Provide easy access to information
Part of the power of touchpoints is their ability to highlight the value you provide. But that doesn’t mean you should only communicate value during those specific interactions.
Providing easy, anytime access to information and source documents for all stakeholders is a powerful way to showcase how much work is going on behind the scenes. It also frees portfolio managers from the constant stream of information requests, enabling them to focus their efforts on value-adding services.
Essential touchpoint solutions
Precision execution during key touchpoints (presented in context with clients’ underlying goals), spotlights the portfolio manager’s true value as a trusted advisor and business partner. Delivering on this value, however, takes more than just skill and well-defined workflows. It also needs the support of solutions designed to enhance portfolio managers’ existing capabilities.
Here are four touchpoints where the right solutions make all the difference.
Without the right tools, proactively planning, executing, managing and reporting on all compliance items and events across all communities in a financial year is a fulltime job. With the help of compliance workflows, checklists and reminders, however, this gargantuan task becomes infinitely more doable.
Community meetings – and their successful management – are a major touchpoint. Getting this right can literally take portfolio managers from zero to hero in the eyes of their clients.
The Covid-19 pandemic brought some amazing conveniences to the table – online AGMs are a good example. With those conveniences came some real challenges, though. Quorum and voting management are particularly cumbersome using mainstream tools like Zoom and Teams.
Portfolio managers need a better solution to proactively plan, execute and conclude compliant online or in-person meetings. In this, specialised meeting management solutions can be gamechangers, offering standardised AGM agenda templates, invitations, quorum management, online voting, meeting minutes, attendance registers, action point activators and more.
Transparency breeds trust, and there is nothing a client values more than a trusted business partner with their property asset’s best interests in hand. Providing real transparency is almost impossible without specialised tools, however.
The only effective way (that we’ve found) to enable on-demand stakeholder access to key community financial and operational KPIs, source documents and project statuses is to have those consolidated in a centralised, specialist solution that prioritises transparency.
Providing access to information is important, but so is interpreting that information in a way that clients understand and appreciate. Reports that do this successfully really emphasise the portfolio manager’s insight and expertise, making it impossible for clients to ignore their value as business partners.
Ideally, monthly reports should include all compliance items, meetings, community financial health (bank balances, debtors, creditors, actual vs budgeted financials etc.), day-to-day maintenance, warnings, penalties and unit transfers. Creating these manually is nearly impossible, making specialist solutions with strong reporting capabilities invaluable.
Is it worth it?
Understanding key touchpoints and activating solutions that support them makes it infinitely easier for property professionals to excel at their execution. However, trustees, directors and investors also stand to gain significantly from this proactive approach to portfolio management.
From less risk, to more insight, to a more valuable asset at the end of the day, clients are not only recognising the benefits of proactive property management, they’re gravitating towards the professionals who provide it.
They’re also willing to pay a premium for what is perceived as a premium service – a reward you can literally take to the bank.
WeconnectU offers a truly end-to-end Property Management ecosystem that solves all the major challenges in Community Management, Rental Portfolio Management and Inspections & Maintenance Management.
WeconnectU’s solutions have proven extremely effective at helping property managers break free of their operational limitations to create modern businesses that are compliant, manageable, scalable and profitable.
Contact us for more information.