Are You Leaking Efficiency? How to Close Communication Gaps in Property Management

Despite the many tools at our disposal and more ways to connect than ever, property management communication still feels like a game of telephone. Picture this: a resident reports an ongoing ceiling leak issue via email, maintenance takes photos and stores them in a folder, and then corporate wastes time piecing together the information and still needs to return to the original source to fill in the missing pieces.

This disjointed process not only frustrates residents but also creates extra work and hampers productivity, as highlighted in a recent survey where 63% of property managers cited ineffective communication as a major cause of resident issue resolution delays.

How do we close these communication loops for good and walk the operational efficiency talk? At Synco, we obsess over property management communication, so you don’t have to.

This post will explore ways property management leaders can finally streamline conversations across all teams. The aim isn’t to add more tools and technology but to provide visibility to all parties, ensure faster issue resolution, and prevent anything from falling through the cracks.

Stopping Communication Leakage That’s Costing Your Team

Corporate and onsite teams operate like two filing cabinets, occasionally sharing the same information but never truly becoming one. This siloed approach leads to crucial details like emails, documents, and photos getting lost in the shuffle.

When filing an insurance claim or retrieving an old document, it can be daunting to put everything together – it’s like trying to solve a giant puzzle. If your team doesn’t have an easy way to share and file information instantly, pieces of the story may remain on their devices or in different folders – which is especially harmful when employees leave the company.

What we should all be striving for is a concept called “closed-loop communication.” According to a Forbes article by Samantha Tassone, Executive and Communication Coach, closed-loop communication can be described as:

“A designed workflow practice that is laser-focused on keeping all stakeholders up to date with new information and insights as it evolves in a timely fashion. It relies on feedback to course-correct and maintain the requested output. It requires following up on open tasks or topics and looping in and updating others on changes as they are occurring. This type of proactive status update creates stability and clarity for each stakeholder’s role and responsibilities, builds trust and becomes a high-quality and burden-free workflow.”

A unified platform is your best defense against disconnected processes. Think of it as a shared digital filing cabinet where everything related to properties, units, and residents is stored. This system keeps all conversations in one place, eliminating the need to sift through different email chains. 

  • Attachments and photos can be seamlessly added to conversations, providing a comprehensive view of the situation.
List of attachments in a Synco conversation
  • Conversations can be automatically linked back to the original thread, simplifying communication.
Linking conversations in Synco
  • Easily forward external emails into the platform and apply tags for easy filtering and searching for information.
Forwarding external emails into Synco to start a conversation

Navigating the Communication Maze in Property Management

If you spend a good portion of your day digging yourself out of your inbox, you’re not alone! Managing residential units across different locations can be daunting, especially when you’re bombarded with hundreds of emails daily.

It’s no wonder that need-to-know information often gets buried under a mountain of “FYI” and “Got it!” messages, leaving us sifting through countless email threads to make sure we have everything we need to do our jobs.

These are just a few examples where email and texting fall woefully short: 

The Move-Out Mess

When a resident moves out, maintenance finds a hole in the wall. A photo alone won’t accurately reflect how big the hole is or which wall was damaged. Context is necessary. Gathering those extra bits of information makes coordinating insurance and deposits a messy process of emails and phone calls, putting a costly drag on productivity.

This lack of streamlined communication causes delays that affect the resident experience. We must find solutions to streamline workflows and improve communication to ensure transparency, accuracy, and efficiency.

The Inaccurate Incident Report

Consider the steps involved when a brick gets thrown through a door or a leak triggers the sprinklers and floods the area. First, your on-site team rushes to contain the damage. Then, photos of the incident are sent to the team at headquarters.

When the corporate office goes to make the insurance claim or to repair the water damage, they spend time sorting through random folders with vague dates, making it hard to locate crucial details. Your team spends more time searching for information than solving problems.

To get a complete understanding of the situation, your team must capture and share all email chains, Google Drive folders, and photos in one place that synchronizes in real time so your team file claims promptly and focus on other critical tasks.

Corporate vs. On-Site Operations: The Closing the Gap

The key to finally closing the communication gap in property management is to connect departments on a single platform. We envision a world where property management teams of any size can easily foster team unity and enhance communication across multiple sites all on one app.

Every conversation should be organized and linked to a specific unit, project, or property. This centralized workspace ensures continuity of discussions across time and employees. This saves time, prevents duplicative efforts, and allows teams to focus on impactful tasks like reducing vacancies and cultivating a positive company culture.

Implementing a purpose-built tool for property management teams that integrates with your property management tech stack will allow your team to seamlessly capture and share photos, facilitate instant messaging, and keep everyone on the same page.

When every team member can access the complete information they need, it eliminates bottlenecks once and for all, resulting in fewer mistakes and less time spent looking for missing details, fewer delays, better reporting, and, ultimately, smarter decisions. 

Which functions facilitate centralized communication? Here’s what you should consider:

  • Can all information be found in one mobile-accessible place? Synco consolidates all conversations, attachments, and photos, providing full context at a glance – whether you’re on your phone on-site or a computer at the office.
  • Are all conversations connected? Unlike emails, Synco lets you seamlessly join two conversations, keeping all attachments and history intact. These Linked Conversations remain connected to the original thread, reducing confusion and errors.
  • Is information capture easy and instant? Got an email from a landscaper with a photo of a downed tree and a proposal for removal? Don’t worry about compressing the size of images or fumbling with large attachments. Just forward it to Synco and continue discussing the next steps internally.
  • Is everything automatically organized and searchable? Synco applies universal standard tags to each conversation, making filing automatic and searching a breeze. Gone are the days of hoping everyone labels files the same way. Everyone has access to the entire history, not just those diligent about filing. 
  • Do you have peace of mind that sensitive information and conversations stay private? With Synco, bringing a group of people together is easy, but the circle cannot widen. Locked Conversations keep due diligence, lending and mortgage documents, etc., private. 

The challenges posed by communication gaps in property management are real and impactful, affecting resident satisfaction, team productivity, and operational efficiency. By addressing these challenges head-on and embracing closed-loop communication practices, property management leaders can elevate the resident experience, resulting in profitable operations. 

Through a unified platform like Synco, all stakeholders, from corporate to on-site teams, can seamlessly collaborate and get what they need in real-time. This eliminates the inefficiencies caused by disconnected communication methods and empowers teams to resolve issues faster and more effectively – bridging the communication gap and ushering in a new era of efficiency and excellence in property management.

Ready to close the loop in property management communication? Take a walk through Synco here.

Jeannie Cambria
Corporate and onsite teams operate like two filing cabinets, occasionally sharing the same information but never truly becoming one.

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