Case Study: BH Management

Winning with offensive Maintenance in the Resident Service game

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Location

Des Moines, IA

Industry

Multifamily

Units

90,000 +
across 320 properties

Favorite features

Resident Communication, Voicemail

Problem:

Communication lacking between service teams and residents, leasing teams.

"In the world of multifamily maintenance, the tasks and the physical work haven’t changed much over the past three decades. Keeping up with the evolving demands in communication and customer service has been the challenge."

Robbie Parker

Director of facilities for BH Management

Parker said the lack of a workflow platform through which to maintain that real-time line of communication, provide updates and express empathy and understanding, puts maintenance teams at a disadvantage in terms of customer service.

“I’ve been a maintenance guy for 35 years. The job still involves fixing things, correcting things, learning things, but today’s market is all about reputation and reputation management,” Parker said. “The ability to communicate in real-time with a resident, even if it’s just to say, ‘I got your request and I can’t get to it right now, but I can get to it this afternoon,’ is priceless if it’s used correctly. If a customer reaches out about a problem and you can respond within five minutes with an apology and a solution, they’re probably going to remain loyal to your brand.

Unreliable internal communication processes create their own set of inefficiencies.

“Previously, a resident would call into the leasing office and someone who knew nothing about maintenance was taking down notes and entering what they could,” Parker said. “You might be able to read their handwriting, but sometimes you couldn’t. Their notes might not always be accurate. There was a lot of confusion, which led to a lot of backtracking to the shop to get additional parts or tools, which created inefficiencies all the way around.”

Solution:

Implement SightPlan to manage service operations and communication.

Just over three years ago, BH Management implemented SightPlan to help streamline communication and organize the workflow on the service side.

Initially used strictly for service requests and answering service purposes, BH service teams quickly extended its use of SightPlan to other areas of operations.

We’ve expanded it into inspections, risk inspections, preventative maintenance, and now we’re getting into asset tracking. We’re moving in so many different directions and making enhancements because of SightPlan,” said Parker, who noted that maintenance team members were quick to embrace the new technology. “The adoption rate from Day 1 was unbelievable. Believe it or not, we still had guys out there with flip phones. But they made the transition, they took up the technology and they love it.”

BH successfully implemented SightPlan three years ago across their entire portfolio. This process was seamless through the use of the SightPlan Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) policy, reducing training time and overall costs to the organization.

Download your BYOD policy

When the COVID-19 health crisis emerged, BH service teams also developed a weekly bulletin through SightPlan that allowed maintenance teams to issue notifications and updates to residents, and participate in communications.

Results:

SightPlan Improves Communication, Reduces Inefficiencies

The success of the SightPlan bulletin was immediately evident following the first two distributions.

First week

1900views
👍94%

Second week

1700views
👍96%
“In the first week, we had over 1,900 viewers view the message with 94% thumbs-up rating and in the second week we had 1,700 views with 96% thumbs-up,” Parker said. “So, in two weeks, we were able to reach almost 4,000 users with different messages. The feedback has been really good.”

Resident relations have continually improved due to advanced communications capabilities through SightPlan, and the platform has created important efficiencies, as well.

“With the ability to listen to people and have that conversation through the app, evean being able to pre-diagnose things by asking simple questions, you know which tools to take with you on the job,” Parker said. “Especially now, in the world of COVID-19 and those new protocols, you don’t want to take a full tool bag into an apartment. You only want to take the tools that are necessary to do the job because you’ve got to disinfect them.

While BH prioritized emergency tasks during the health crisis, the SightPlan platform has also allowed service teams to detect the concern or urgency in resident requests.

“With the voicemail feature, you can actually listen to the resident and you can learn a lot from that conversation. As a customer service point, we can hear the urgency in their voice, their stress,” Parker said. “Their situation may not constitute an emergency as far as we’re concerned, but we can get back to them and offer reassurance. That functionality is priceless.”

The resident descriptions, notes or even photos available via SightPlan allow BH service managers to assign maintenance tasks based on associate skill sets, which Parker said has saved time and improved the quality of work.

The ability to manage multiple areas of operation through one platform has also lessened training time.

“Any time you throw in a platform for move-ins, a different one for accounting, ops, etc. that just means more training and more confusion,” Parker said. “Anything we can consolidate and put into one workflow platform reduces our required training and inefficiencies.”

While Parker can’t assign a monetary value to the efficiencies created through SightPlan, he believes the greatest benefit it offers shows up on the customer service side.

“How do you put a dollar value on customer service, reputation management and building your brand? What’s more important to me is those intangibles and the relationships we’re able to build with the residents through SightPlan, through that communication,” he said. “I want to lead the industry in terms of customer service, and I’m proud to work for a company that values technology. When I’m talking with other companies, I push SightPlan every chance that I have. I want the world to know about SightPlan. It’s just unbelievable, and I believe in it.

Results of SightPlan Implementation for BH Management

-30%

reduction for the average time to close (TTC) maintenance tasks

+3tasks

daily increased average of completed tasks per maintenance technician

Improved SLAs across company with the same resources.

BH deployed SightPlan Operations Suite nation-wide to improve operational effectiveness and ease the load on existing teams through gained efficiencies.

XX%

Ticket
reduction

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