How do you judge a great coliving property management system (PMS)? Do you look at the system’s range of features and integrations, such as a channel manager or guest portal? Do you consider a PMS’s usability and customisation? Do you weigh up the cost of the software vs the additional revenue it generates? All are important factors, but ultimately a great coliving PMS is only as good as its customer support.
A coliving PMS is more than just tech: it’s your long-term partner for business growth. A great coliving PMS should therefore offer guidance and advice throughout the partnership, ensuring you make the most out of the system. Here’s three support areas that differentiate a good PMS from a great PMS.
- Regular system updates
- Dedicated customer success
- Bespoke consultancy
Regular system updates
As the coliving industry develops, so does its technology. New features are created to solve new challenges. Next level integrations provide next level solutions. Revolutionary software developments will revolutionise resident experience. But to ensure all of this new technology is fit for your coliving needs, it’s crucial to choose a coliving-specific PMS.
A PMS provider that specialises in coliving will listen to industry feedback, take real-life insights from coliving customers, spot coliving trends (i.e. common pain points amongst customers) and make system improvements that directly benefit all coliving operators. In other words, all updates and development work will be related to your business unlike a Swiss Army knife, do-it-all PMS.
At res:harmonics, we send out weekly ‘release notes’ to make our customers aware of our latest innovations, system tweaks and development updates. We regularly launch new features and create a wide array of articles and videos, filled with screenshots and explanations, to show how the new aspects of the system works. We also host regular webinars, video tutorials and Q&A sessions for more complicated upgrades. As such, your system is always up-to-date and easy-to-use without the need for lengthy system training.
Last year, res:harmonics ran a series of monthly webinars that helped our customers learn the basics of res:harmonics property management system and how the software works best for them. Our coliving customers found the webinar useful to make the most of the property management system in order to operate their coliving spaces more efficiently.
Dedicated customer success
Customer support is not the same as customer success. As standard, all coliving PMS providers should respond quickly when the waters are choppy - be it remedying system malfunctions or sorting out glitches. Top-of-the-range PMS providers will also offer support when the waters are calm - to help you make the most of your system.
There is a wide range of coliving PMS functions, and operators typically use just 50% of the software. A great PMS provider will actively try to increase this through customer success initiatives and guidance for best practice. For instance, a provider delivering initial onboarding should specifically focus on your operations and strategy instead of giving a general run-through of available software features. The onboarding team should also explain how the new system aligns with your existing operating procedures, while giving advice on additional system functions that will help you reach your goals.
Once your system is set up and ready to go, the best coliving software providers assign you to a dedicated Customer Success Manager (CSM) who takes proactive interest in your business, helping you use the system to maximise revenue opportunities and streamline your processes. For instance, a CSM will steer you to use the channel manager to target your ideal coliving residents and set-up the guest app to facilitate community events.
At res:harmonics, our dedicated CSMs hold regular client calls to understand changing business needs. Acting as both coach and partner, our CSMs will analyse your system usage to see what’s working and what’s not. What’s more, as our CSMs work with a range of coliving companies - ranging from 50 unit operators to 1000+ unit giants - they can also share insights on industry best practice.
A 20-unit client was happy with the res:harmonics software, but their CSM felt they could do more with greater knowledge of the system. Having discussed potential training, the CSM organised a tailored one-on-one session for the client to better understand a specific part of the system and take advantage of new opportunities.
A coliving PMS is like Gmail: running a few accounts is easy, but running thousands is very complex. While raising a support ticket is the simple solution to any queries you may have, it’s not adequate on a larger scale. For instance, a coliving operator managing hundreds of units may require more support if they wish to change company-wide processes.
This is where bespoke consultancy comes into play. Bespoke support is not about developing tailor-made software, but it is about providing tailor-made advice. Support tickets are primarily tech-focused, whereas consultancy services revolve around management speaking to management on clear terms (i.e. no IT jargon) and offering advice based on their unique industry insight.
At res:harmonics, we’ve launched 65+ companies onto our coliving-specific platform. Based on our experience of working with various coliving operations and business models, we help coliving managers solve specific coliving problems and avoid common pitfalls. From tips on implementing protocols across your business to guidance on streamlining operations, res:harmonics delivers best practice guidance suited to your specific units, strategy and target market.
A coliving client wanted to strengthen its revenue stream by including multiple stay lengths across its portfolio, but was unsure how to implement the change. We advised on the pricing structure, the availability calendar and syncing the various channels to eradicate issues of double booking and minimise gaps between stays (i.e. how to use short stays to plus gaps between long stays). Now, all their units are available for short-stay or long-stay with a sliding pricing scale.
Proactive support = a PMS must-have
For some operators, customer support is considered an additional nice-to-have, but for coliving, proactive support is a must-have. In a young dynamic industry such as coliving, where technology dictates the efficiency and profitability of your business, having a knowledgeable coliving and tech expert in your corner is invaluable.
Does your coliving PMS deliver proactive customer support? If not, check out our guide on how to switch your PMS.