Have you ever walked into a business and seen desks that look like this?
If the business you walked into was handling your most valuable financial asset, would desk areas like that make you feel encouraged? If you’re anything like us, you might have some concerns about the company – just by looking at that workstation.
You might wonder:
- How do they disseminate information within the organization?
- What if some of those notes and paper contain confidential information like social security numbers or credit card numbers?
- Is that efficient – having all that paper around with hand-written notes – when that information would presumably be entered into a computer system at some point?
- Is this workstation a symbol for this company’s inter-office processes? How reliable or consistent could they be in that case?
- What do they do with all that paper? Does it get shredded? Tossed in the trash? What about sensitive information?
We believe that a workstation is often one small example of a broader company culture. There are plenty of brilliant people out there with messy workstations, no doubt! But, when it comes to handling thousands (literally, thousands) of individual, detail-intensive transactions on a daily basis, we think that there is something to be said for an organized space and carefully thought-out systems.
Now, imagine you walk into a business where the workstations look like this:
Does this make you feel differently – at first glance – about the company? If we could measure our Team Member’s stress levels, we’re pretty sure their stress levels would spike at the mere sight of the first workstation; while looking at this 2nd picture is quite comforting!
Maybe we’re just weird. Weirdly efficient!
We believe that efficiency and eco-friendly outcomes are often closely related. If you’re working in property management – whether as a landlord of 1 property or 50 or 500 – here are some tips from RES to you, to take your operation to the next level.
- Get rid of the paper! Sure, there are times that paper makes more sense, and sometimes your tenants will request a hard-copy of the lease. If that’s the case, print only the lease, scan it into your system and give the tenants the original. If you want to go a step further and use a digital-only signing, that works too – digitally signed documents are legally enforceable.
- Use a paper recycling service, such as Shred-It! You’ll have paper no matter what (USPS probably isn’t going away anytime soon!) so it’s nice to have a secure way to both shred and recycle the paper you do come into contact with.
- Pre-screen your rental property showings! There are a lot of people out there who just want to see a property – and some who aren’t moving for months. Make sure you have a consistent policy in place to avoid wasting time, money and gas driving out to properties where the prospective tenant may be a waste of your time.
- Stand up desks and dual monitors – these are two ways you can be healthier and increase productivity at the same time!
- Invest in hybrid or electric vehicles! The cost of these has dropped dramatically, and the long-term reduced costs for fuel truly add up. Take it a step further and add solar panels to your home or office and charge your electric vehicle that way – totally off the grid.
- Mobilize all your files and documents! You can almost run a property management company from an iPhone; there are myriad cloud-based applications for file and photo storage, most of which are very inexpensive. If you can access and enter data in real time about your properties from anywhere, you’re saving yourself time and money.
We think the future of property management is inherently mobile. The properties, after all, are “out there” and not in our office. Autonomous vehicle technology is rapidly approaching, and we believe that soon vehicles will be mobile offices. Everything you do in your office now- emails, phone calls, handling repair issues, etc. will soon be done while in a vehicle taking you from property to property.
Now that’s efficient!