High rise buildings are becoming more prevalent in popular urban cities. These statuesque towers can house hundreds of people in one condensed area, and provide them with a more convenient lifestyle. But without strong management and concrete operational processes, high rise communities can be chaotic and unpleasant. Fortunately, high rise building software can help.
Table of contents
- What is high rise building software?
- How software can help high rise communities
- What to look for when selecting software for a high rise building
What is high rise building software?
Like any property management software system, high rise software programs help eliminate manual tasks and reduce the workload for management and staff. This allows them to work on other problems and projects that cannot be resolved or completed by technology.
The key difference is that high rise communities will need certain features or qualities that smaller communities can live without. The software will need to accommodate a large volume of residents or owners, and have enough storage for thousands of documents.
If residents are also going to benefit from elements of the software, it must be easy to use. Staff simply don’t have time to train everyone, so it needs to be intuitive or come with resources that will teach people how to master the tools.
How software can help high rise communities
When communities find the right solution for their needs, high rise software will alleviate the issues that create the most problems for staff and residents. In most cases, that’s going to be things like lack of communication, visitor parking discrepancies, and package thefts. Below are some specific ways that property management software can contribute to more positive experiences for management and community members.
Improves amenity management
Bigger buildings may provide residents with more amenities and facilities, especially if it is a luxury building. But when you have 200 fitness enthusiasts trying to use a gym that accommodate 40 people, problems are bound to arise.
Software can provide communities with an online system that regulates bookings. Admins create profiles for each amenity, set timeslots, add terms and conditions, and attach fees, if applicable.
Now for the good part. Residents can book and pay for amenities on their own using their accounts. They don’t have to visit management or concierge to get forms or submit checks. It’s a painless process that actually boosts amenity usage while managing capacity limits. Now when someone books a treadmill at 7 pm, they know they won’t have to wait for it.
Streamlines preventative maintenance
High rise buildings need frequent care. Maintenance projects are always happening simply because there are so many people using the spaces/facilities.
Preventative maintenance helps to keep communities safe and operating smoothly. Elevators in particular need to be maintained to prevent long wait times, or more serious issues for residents who cannot use stairs.
High rise software makes it easier for management to schedule and track preventative maintenance work. Schedule recurring maintenance activities all at once and assign jobs directly to onsite staff through the software.
Eases visitor parking frustrations
Parking is a scarce resource in a big building, and spaces aren’t always used responsibly. Sometimes owners will occupy visitor spots to avoid paying for monthly parking. Other times, guests will overstay their welcome and stay parked for days at a time.
There are software programs that have parking management solutions to address these very issues. Admins can decide if staff will issue parking passes, or if residents can access passes on behalf of their guests. If there is no valid pass associated with a car, security will be able to see that and take the appropriate actions to ensure the vehicle doesn’t stay where it doesn’t belong.
Facilitates online payments
No one wants to manually process 500 checks every month! But if your building doesn’t currently offer residents an online payment option, then someone could be stuck doing just that.
Online payment options give residents more convenience and control, and greatly reduce the time staff must spend collecting and processing monthly fees, payments for fines, amenities, and more. The software program you select might have its own online payment system, or integrate with the payment processing system of your choice.
Strengthens security and concierge services
When it comes to high-rise buildings, security continues to be a top concern for residents. Sometimes there are not enough resources to spend on more security cameras or guards, and that leaves residents feeling nervous or unsafe in their own homes.
High rise software that offers a comprehensive security and concierge module can optimize the resources your building already has. For example, the software may help standardize security patrols or automate package tracking so that staff become more proficient and can devote more of their valuable time to keeping the building safe.
What to look for when selecting software for a high rise building
Every community is unique, and will therefore have its own needs and requirements. But this list is a good place to start if you are new to property management software.
Regardless of how big or how small your building is, people need information to flow freely in order to make important decisions and stay connected and engaged. Community is still one of the biggest problems plaguing residential communities, which is why the software you select needs to have a strong, layered communication system.
Consider a platform that supports one-way and two-way communication. For example, staff could have access to an announcements feature that lets them send messages to residents, and members could use a community forum to share their concerns and ideas.
Resident portals are extremely popular and valuable because they let people do the things that matter most to them while removing traditional barriers. For instance, someone could book a guest suite on their way to work, or scroll through the latest announcements while enjoying a quiet evening on the couch. There is no need for them to hold on to physical letters to come into management’s office to accomplish what they want to do.
Not only can residents do more for themselves, but staff get a little more time in their day since they don’t have to attend to so many requests from the members of the building.
Some features in the resident portal may include announcements, an events page, online payments, a personal account where they can update their information, work orders/service requests, and bookings.
Information can empower a community and improve decision-making abilities when it is accessible. Conversely, poorly organized records can create chaos and unnecessary inefficiencies. Paper records are easy to lose, but can be challenging to find.
Many managers are moving to online record storage if they haven’t already done so. That’s because it’s possible to find exactly what you need in seconds using a search bar as opposed to looking for a certain page or file by hand.
With a cloud-based storage solution, management can retrieve items from any computer, not just the office desktop. That additional convenience really comes in handy if there is a deadline looming or you need to verify when a contract expires.
This is a must-have for big communities. In many cases, high rise software will provide admins with the option to enable a self-booking functionality for residents. Not only does this create a uniform process for reserving amenities, but staff don’t have to worry about double booking facilities or keeping track of paper forms.
Online payment processing
With a secure, user-friendly online payment feature, you can literally cut payment processing time in half. Residents can authorize automatic payments for recurring fees and use credit cards, pre-authorized debit, direct withdrawal, electronic funds transfer or ACH payment to cover fees, fines, and more. It is very likely that they will be able to make these payments from their phones or computers.
Management or other staff members enjoy a lighter workload because they don’t have to collect cheques from hundreds of people, or make bank trips to make deposits. Payments go straight to the building’s bank account, and transactions are digitally recorded for residents and for management.
Every security/concierge team can benefit from software. Since teams are being asked to do more with the same amount of resources, software can be the solution that your staff need to increase productivity and efficiency without needing more people.
Some of the top features of a security module include authorized entry, security patrols, package scanning and visitor parking.
Features will play a big role in your decision-making process, but even the best features won’t be as valuable to your community if you don’t also have the things:
It’s natural to have questions about any software system, and on occasion, something will go wrong. If and when that happens, you’ll be very happy that you can speak to a real person about the problem you are experiencing. Not all high rise software programs have a strong support team, so make sure to ask about customer support before you sign any contract.
Scalability is a feature to look out for because it means the system you choose can grow and evolve with your building. You might not need many features today, but you may require them down the road. You want a solution that is flexible and dynamic so you don’t have to switch to a new platform later on.
Some people do not have a computer at home. But virtually everyone has a phone. That’s why the mobile app is a crucial part of any high rise building software. The more residents you have using the platform, the more valuable it will be to you and your staff.
Every software system is different, and as a result, each program will have its own strengths and weaknesses. Some programs do accounting really well, while others excel in record-keeping and communications.
While it’s not essential, it does make life easier if you have the ability to integrate software systems. This way, you can enjoy the best features from two different platforms using just one login.
High rise building software is an excellent way for management to boost productivity and reduce manual work. Many people find that it can also help them reduce operating costs, and who doesn’t want that?!