The allure of a 4-hour work week is a concept that resonates with many small business owners (We all have read the book from...
In business, increasing productivity isn’t just about working harder; it’s about working smarter. For business owners juggling the dual roles of managing their enterprise and performing day-to-day strata management tasks, finding ways to amplify productivity can mean the difference between struggling to keep up and leading the market. As a business technologist, over the past 20 years I’ve helped various organizations to improve their productivity using technology and other process improvement best practices. Having been working with strata managers in the past few months, here are ten strategies for strata managers whose keen to significantly enhance their productivity.
1. Embrace Automation Tools
Implement automated software for routine tasks such as responding to enquiries, fee collection, invoice generation, and maintenance scheduling. Automation reduces the time spent on administrative tasks and minimizes human error, freeing up time for more complex, high-value activities. I highly recommend looking at technologies such as Power Automate to automate your processes. If you are already have a Microsoft 365 subscription, this is not going to cost you much.
2. Streamline Communication with a Unified System
Utilize a centralized communication platform that allows for easy dissemination of information to residents, board members, and maintenance teams. Efficient communication reduces misunderstandings, ensures quick resolution of issues, and saves considerable time. Basically this is the standardization of the communication mediums, so you can manage it efficiently.
3. Implement Online Payment Systems
Transition to online payment systems for collecting strata fees and other charges. This reduces the time spent processing payments and provides a more convenient experience for residents, leading to timelier payments and improved cash flow. Most of the platforms today comes with their own automations which will help you with leverage those features to improve productivity of your operation.
4. Leverage AI for Customer Service
Incorporate AI-driven chatbots or virtual assistants to handle routine inquiries from residents. This technology can provide quick answers to common questions, book facilities, and even escalate issues when necessary, ensuring that managers focus on more critical tasks. Our secure AI platform merlo.ai can be ideal for this as we have pre-trained the AI to answer questions related to regulations.
5. Adopt a Proactive Maintenance Approach
Invest in predictive maintenance tools that utilize AI to anticipate and address building issues before they become critical. This approach prevents downtime, extends the life of assets, and reduces the time and resources spent on emergency repairs.
6. Optimize Meeting Management
Use digital tools to schedule, plan, and conduct meetings more efficiently. Online platforms can automate sending agendas, collecting votes, and sharing minutes, making AGMs and other meetings more productive and less time-consuming. A good starting point would be to start using tools much as Otter.AI or Microsoft Teams Transcription to create meeting minutes and extract action items. I personally prefer Microsoft Teams transcription feature as I find it more reliable and also free with Office subscription.
7. Utilize Data Analytics for Decision Making
Implement data analytics to gain insights into the operational aspects of the property. Understand trends in maintenance requests, payment patterns, and resident feedback to make informed decisions that enhance service quality and operational efficiency.
8. Offer Self-Service Options
Provide residents with self-service portals where they can log maintenance requests, check account balances, and access important documents. This reduces the administrative burden on managers and empowers residents to find information quickly and independently.
9. Develop and Follow Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs)
Create clear, documented SOPs for all routine tasks and emergencies. Having a set procedure in place ensures consistency, reduces training time for new staff, and allows for quick action when issues arise.
10. Invest in Continuous Learning and Development
Stay abreast of the latest industry trends, technologies, and regulatory changes. Investing in continuous professional development ensures that you’re always employing the best strategies and tools, leading to long-term productivity gains.
By implementing these strategies, strata managers and business owners can significantly boost their productivity, leading to a more efficient, profitable operation. It’s about leveraging technology, optimizing processes, and continually seeking improvements to stay ahead in the challenging yet rewarding field of strata management. These ten steps provide a roadmap to not just surviving but thriving by maximizing efficiency and effectiveness in every aspect of the business.