Streamlining the ALC Resident Experience
New technology at Avenue Living Communities is facilitating better service for residents and a more efficient, effective way to conduct operations.
Jamie Lott, Director of IT and IS, sets the direction for technology at Avenue Living.
“I’m looking to find the right technologies that are going to enhance the business and employees’ everyday lives,” says Lott. “My goal is to make work easier, more efficient and more effective, whether people are in the field, in the office, at home, or even on vacation.”
For the residents of Avenue Living, enhanced technology now gives quicker and better access to services, as well as faster turnaround times on work orders. It also means signing a lease is much more simple.
“We can now book a showing online to give more flexibility for prospects to book at any time of the day, without needing to call our office,” says Lott. “With the devices and technology we have in place now, if the client likes a unit, our leasing relations specialists can facilitate the application and even lease signing for the unit within a few minutes with the prospect during the viewing.”
“From there, the process is streamlined. It used to take days to sign a lease, but now all of the application and signing can be done right in the suite – from the tablet we provide to each one of our leasing relations specialists.”
It’s a perfect example of the investment Avenue Living is making in technology these days.
Lott adds that the company is also embracing more real-time data analytics, providing updates on a dashboard that displays financial, occupancy, collection and leasing information – all as it updates.
“This is such a big change from the way business moved from 30 or 20 years ago – even 10 years ago. We can react or be proactive in addressing concerns on a financial, occupancy and leasing aspect – to the minute. It allows our staff, our C-suite and our leadership teams to make more accurate decisions based off the most up-to-date data they can get,” says Lott.
Avenue Living is continuing to focus on the resident experience as it puts more effort into the technology aspect of its business, enhancing how residents are able to interact with the company.
For example, in years past, if a resident wanted Avenue Living’s assistance with an apartment repair, the setup would be done purely by phone.
“Because we’re moving more to the modernized system, we’re looking at creating an online portal for residents. Any requests or repair tickets would be updated in real time to the clients,” says Lott. “It opens up more transparency and flexibility in our relationship with our residents.”
That becomes increasingly more important to the current generation of younger residents, who are used to technology and its time-saving benefits.
“They’re comfortable accessing services online or via text messages and we are moving in that direction,” adds Lott.
The company is also starting to investigate the possibility of smart technologies, having information and services for a suite that can be controlled through a cell phone. It could give Avenue Living better insight as to what is happening in its buildings in real time.
“Instead of us being reactive to our residents’ needs, the goal is to become more proactive from a technology standpoint, allowing the business to actually understand we have an issue – even before that first tenant calls in,” says Lott.