Knock’s Top 5 Takeaways from OPTECH 2018

NMHC’s OPTECH Conference in Orlando, Florida just wrapped up last week. Knock attends this conference every year because it is consistently a top forum for discussion on how technology will continue to redefine the multifamily industry. These are our 5 key takeaways from the sessions we attended and conversions we had while at OPTECH 2018.

Multifamily is Swimming in Data

It should come as no surprise that there is an abundance of data for multifamily managers to use in making decisions. Market data, customer data, and even building data can now be easily captured and analyzed to identify opportunities and find efficiencies. With a surplus of data flowing, it is imperative to have the correct business intelligence systems in place to be able to effectively understand and distribute data to your team.

Data Management Compliance is More Important Than Ever Before

As management companies build data warehouses to store all the data they are collecting, data management processes must be compliant with new legislation like the GDPR and the CA Consumer Privacy Act. These acts put limitations on how customer data is collected, used, and managed with significant penalties for non-compliance. The overwhelming guidance is to have a legal professional review your data collection and storage policies immediately and determine a regular review schedule to limit any risk of future lawsuits.

Use Data to Drive Decisions, But Don’t Get Lost In The Weeds

Once data is collected and stored correctly, it is time to determine what to do with it. Many fall into the trap of creating a smorgasbord of dashboards that report on every conceivable metric. This mistake wastes time reporting on metrics that aren’t likely to drive the business forward. The sessions we attended recommend a collaborative approach in identifying the metrics that matter most to key stakeholders within your organization and focusing reporting on those metrics – with the ability to deep dive if necessary.

Automation & On-Demand Services are Evolving Customer Experiences

With increased understanding of the interactions between prospects and property managers throughout the prospect lifecycle, managers can identify trends to apply automation and technology to improve experiences. Website popups collect customer data, automated outreach sequences nurture leads, online scheduling allows prospects to visit physically, and on-demand video tours allow them to visit virtually. All are effective tools being applied today to increase the immediacy and consistency of customer interactions with property management companies.

Fostering a Culture of Innovation is Essential

Ideas are only as good as the execution that follows, so sessions dedicated to taking these ideas back and making them happen were welcomed by many. The discussion revealed two key themes. First, senior leadership must actively encourage employees at all levels to question processes and find creative solutions to existing problems. This freedom creates a culture of innovation that will drive the organization forward. Second is to dedicate resources on exploring and implementing innovative solutions. Change does not come from 10 people dedicating 5% of their time. It can only come when a team is 100% dedicated to bringing about the change they are passionate about seeing and are empowered to make it a reality. With these pieces in place, an organization can expect to see new and exciting technology evolving their business far into the future.

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