Multitasking is mandatory for community association management groups charged with managing finances and maintaining properties while handling owner issues and communicating with their boards in a timely manner.
This vast range of responsibilities can make it easy to lose sight of the ultimate goal: growth.
Here are six technology solutions for community association management companies that can create efficiencies by automating and offloading many of those manual tasks, giving managers more time to focus on growing their property counts.
1. RESALE DOCUMENTATION SOFTWARE
Within the resale process, community association managers are tasked with providing accurate and timely information, meeting strict and every-changing guidelines. The process is both time-consuming and tedious.
Resale documentation software can help by providing a central location for all documents, simplifying the complex tasks of disclosing information. It also gives managers control over processing, delivery and record retention required to meet and exceed state regulations.
2. COMMUNICATION SOFTWARE
Printing and delivering paper communications can occupy a great deal of time and money, and it’s difficult to communicate with residents in real-time.
Communication software enables managers to easily communicate online with various parties as needed: residents, the board, or members of the management team. Online communications are a powerful tool for emergencies, provide greater accountability, and can often connect with other tools (accounting, scheduling) for seamless problem solving.
3. ARCHITECTURAL CONTROL SOFTWARE
Community association management companies are constantly striving to maintain property values. A cohesive-looking community is vital for property values, but when residents request structural additions or paint color changes, the approval process can be arduous.
Software that enables online approvals of architectural change requests can greatly expedite the process and allows key parties to collaborate remotely. Managers don’t need to worry about holding up contractor schedules and adding stress to residents’ plans, and they no longer have to scramble with paperwork to get their side of the job approved.
Using a product like SmartArchitecturals will save a lot of time spent meeting in person and poring over paperwork. Make your approvals online no matter where you are.
4. MAIL-OUT SOLUTIONS & COUPONS
Not all communications can be handled with online solutions. Some residents simply prefer the tangible feeling of a welcome note or newsletter in their hands, and other messages are also best served on paper. But the effort required can be overwhelming.
Thankfully, there are now online platforms for mail-outs, so you can send out coupons, late notices, lien letters, violation letters, ballots and proxy envelopes, all without having to leave your office or lick a single stamp.
Both SouthData and Optimal Outsource handle the entire process, including printing, inserting, addressing and mailing, all of which can often be done seamlessly through a manager’s accounting system. Their goal is to help association managers focus on property management and resident satisfaction, leaving mail-outs to the experts.
5. VIOLATION SOFTWARE
In a managed community, violations must be dealt with in a diplomatic, timely manner.
Instead of juggling piles of letters and knocking on doors, managers can leverage software that identifies violations via color-coded maps, uses time-stamped photos for greater accountability, issues the violations electronically and keeps everything archived online. The time savings and stress reduction alone make these technology options extremely attractive.
Along with its SmartArchitecturals product, Smartwebs also offers the specialized SmartViolations tool with a free demo online. Additionally, SenEarthCo is a cloud-based HOA management system that handles many common tasks, including violation procedures.
6. AP AUTOMATION
The accounts payable (AP) process might be one of the most daunting for association managers—mistakes can be costly in terms of time, money and reputation.
For community association managers dealing with multiple properties, numerous approvers and invoices, a centralized process is invaluable. The security, control and visibility provided by AP software gives managers more peace of mind that their finances are in reliable hands. Eliminate paper and the stress associated with tracking, monitoring, reporting and audits.
An automated accounts payable software solution, like AvidStrongroom, gives managers transparency into and control over spending. Best of all, a sound AP process builds lasting relationships with suppliers.