A property management office excels when it's driven by a strong team. What makes a property management team successful is making sure that each member is not only capable of getting the job done, but is motivated and well-equipped to do it optimally.
If you want to create a thriving property management team, you must plan for success. Here’s a three-step plan to help you create the best team.
1. Hire the right people
Start by hiring the right people. As simple as it sounds, having the right people on your team makes all the difference. Start by making a list of the ideal skills and characteristics you find valuable for the property management team you’re building.
Upon conducting interviews, don’t get stuck on the resume or skill set alone, but more importantly, assess the interviewee’s personality and determine whether or not he or she will be a good fit for the “culture” of your property management company. Take the time to introduce potential employees to key staff members to see how they interact. Find out what their personal goals are; not just what they did at their last job. Are they generally amiable? Can they stay calm and polite in the face of pressure? These things are important factors for doing the job right so be sure to look out for them.
You must also take the time to see if he or she represents the property or community well. If you’re managing an apartment, consider if this person has the right demeanor, skills, and approachability for the demographic and type of renters you’re aiming for. At the end of the day, your property management team will be representing the landlord or the property’s brand. Invest time in looking for the right people and you’ll be all the more successful in the end.
2. Train your team regularly
In a people-facing service such as multifamily property management, the way your team handles an issue or communicates with renters can spell disaster for business if they are not properly trained. Not training your team is one of the biggest mistakes you can make. If a tenant has a bad experience with a member of your team, they will more than likely tell other residents, or maybe even leave a negative online review. To avoid misunderstandings between your team and tenants or prospective renters, you must invest time and money in properly training your property management team.
Here’s a link to a free basic customer service course to get started.
Apart from regular and mandatory training sessions, offer educational and advancement opportunities to motivate your team members to aim for betterment. Even if opportunities may be limited in smaller offices, those managing multiple properties can mentor and groom selected employees for management opportunities, either at that property or another. While not all employees will likely take advantage of the opportunity, those that do will be more likely to stay and become better team members.
3. Equip your team with proven property management tools
Investing in property management tools that make your property management team’s responsibilities easier and more productive is worth every penny. Instead of dealing with tedious items that can be automated with a helpful tool, your team can focus on what really matters — driving income for your properties.
There are plenty of property management tools available these days that can truly make work seamless for your team and diminish potentially costly human error. Property management software can let your team handle tenant communication, repairs, billing, and other routine tasks easily with a few clicks. The right system can help greatly improve your bottom line as it will result in happier tenants that feel promptly catered to, and a happier property management team that can be more attentive to tenant needs and other income-driving activities.
There are many property management software to choose from. Each offers varying degrees of usability and function. Spend some time evaluating some of the larger players before making a selection. Some of the usual suspects include Yardi, RealPage, and Appfolio.
One of the latest and most helpful property management tools that can save you and your team a lot of time and headache are outsourced eviction services. These services enable your assistant managers to stay at the property and focused on profit-driving activities instead of wasting their time driving to court to file suits, or attending lengthy hearings. Some eviction service has eviction software that enables your team to easily make service requests for eviction notices, eviction suits, abstract of judgments, writ of possessions and even eviction appeals.
At the end of the day, creating a successful property management team comes down to choosing the right people, educating them, and supporting them with tools that can help them do their work better and faster. You’ll find that most employees are eager to learn or perfect new skills and you just might be surprised at the results.
If you are in the Houston, or Dallas area and want to start a free trial of our eviction service, click here.