Efficiency Unleashed: The Importance of Centralization in Multifamily

The Importance of Centralization in Multifamily

With Joani Schumaker, Founder & CEO of The Revenue Method

“My brain is always thinking ‘How can properties operate more efficiently?’” shares industry veteran and revenue management expert, Joani Schumaker, Founder & CEO of The Revenue Method. We had the opportunity to tap into her wealth of knowledge around the evolving landscape of multifamily and, in particular, some of the areas in which centralization is poised to impact the industry.

Joani starts by sharing that “many business processes within multifamily haven’t changed since the ‘90s.” She advocates for property management companies to adopt a forward-thinking approach to their operations, both at the corporate and on-site levels, by embracing technologies that eliminate manual tasks and redundancies. Staffing challenges—characterized by leaner teams and high turnover—further amplify the need to address inefficiencies that have a ripple effect on resident retention, revenue and net operating income. For example, if a check scanner breaks, this delays rent payment processing and potentially the need to waive late fees, which can be a manual accounting process. Schumaker suggests “partnering with digital solutions like Domuso to streamline rent payments, which not only mitigates manual processing challenges but also enhances staff’s ability to focus on resident engagement.”

An immediate opportunity for PMCs, according to Schumaker, lies in “evaluating existing software and systems to identify automation opportunities.” She emphasizes the potential of centralizing tasks like on-site accounting to the corporate level, thereby fostering a more efficient and positive workplace at the property level. “Centralization isn’t just about corporate efficiency; it’s about creating environments within the properties where staff and residents thrive,” Schumaker notes. Specifically, Schumaker shared that “although many properties have had the same office hours for decades, about 54% of applications are submitted outside of their business hours.” Furthermore, she highlights consumer behavior trends, like the preference for self-service options, as a rationale for automating services such as apartment tours, enhancing accessibility while freeing up staff resources.

“A key driver of successful centralization is the tech-savviness of the new workforce,” Schumaker observes. Younger employees, in particular, are more adaptable to new technologies, mitigating the challenges of change management. “There’s just not the same fatigue with learning new software among millennials and zoomers, especially if training and implementation are handled well,” she explains. This eagerness to embrace new tools not only facilitates operational changes but also aligns staff efforts with broader corporate goals.

“Embracing automation leads to operational efficiencies, allowing PMCs to focus on what truly matters–the happiness of both staff and residents,” said Schumaker, highlighting that when redundancies are eliminated through automation, on-site staff can dedicate more time to residents’ needs. This philosophy underscores the broader benefits of automation and centralization, directly impacting staff satisfaction and resident retention positively. 

Joani Schumaker’s vision of the future is one where efficiency and technology foster a vibrant community for staff and residents. The journey towards centralization is viewed not just as a strategy, but as a transformative path towards a more interconnected and flourishing multifamily ecosystem. As we step into this new era, the synergy of centralization, automation, and a focus on human elements stands out as the foundation for a progressive shift in the multifamily landscape.

Domuso is proud to have Joani Schumaker serve as part of their Industry Advisory Board. In collaboration with industry leaders like her, Domuso is at the forefront of redefining multifamily living, championing a future where technology and efficiency pave the way for a more rewarding and harmonious community experience.

What are some specific examples of manual processes in multifamily property management that can be centralized?
Centralizing lease administration, maintenance requests, and rent collection in multifamily property management can streamline operations, reducing time and resource expenditure on administrative tasks.

How does centralization impact the financial performance of a multifamily property?
Centralization improves financial performance by cutting down operational costs and enhancing efficiency. This leads to better financial reporting and decision-making, potentially increasing resident retention and reducing vacancy losses.

What are the challenges or drawbacks of implementing a centralized system in multifamily property management?
Implementing centralized systems involves initial investment and adaptation challenges. There’s a need for staff training and ensuring data security. Additionally, reliance on these systems poses a risk of widespread disruption in case of system failures.

Domuso is driving digital transformation for the multifamily industry with an advanced platform to manage payments and communication throughout the entire resident lifecycle. Domuso captures 100% of a property’s receivables electronically while giving residents the flexibility to access multiple payment methods from any mobile device.

Ready to chat about how Domuso can help your organization? Request a demo today.

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