The only thing more constant than evolution of technology is change. Many companies are slow to embrace change, refuse to modify at all or are simply bad at changing.
But the way a company manages change – whether it’s the implementation of new technology, the addition of new leadership or employee turnover – can impact the success of the business.
In the apartment industry, change is rampant with regard to technology. Smart-home features, centralized lead-management systems and even artificial intelligence are beginning to weave their way into the everyday fabric of the industry. But there’s definitely a learning curve, and there are some best practices to make sure the change is a smooth one.
Communication: Like companies, team members can also be apprehensive about change. If your company is transitioning to a new lead-management system, for instance, it’s best to provide clear communication before beginning the implementation process, and provide frequent updates throughout the process. An entire communication campaign should be developed and implemented before launch to ensure every team member buys into the change and knows how it will impact their daily activities. The campaign should clearly share why the change is necessary and what’s in it for them. Team members generally don’t react well if large-scale changes are levied upon them with short notice.
Training your associates: Keep in mind that technology is only as effective as the people using it, so it’s worth it to spend as many hours as necessary to train your associates. Companies often throw their people into the proverbial fire by giving them a crash course on the technology and think they’ll suddenly become expert users. But partial knowledge of a system only goes so far. Comprehensive training designed to teach associates how to use the new technology effectively is the most effective way to drive adoption.
Utilize technology: Even when implementing new technology, you can use existing technology to assist. You can extensively vet any partners that are taking part in your changeover and make certain that they have resources to help, such as a 24-hour help desk. Hiccups aren’t uncommon when first learning a new tech feature or system, but associates need an immediate resource if they encounter difficulties.
Involve your associates: Take communication one step further by assembling task forces within each department. These individuals can meet regularly to discuss any future ideas or potential obstacles with the implementation and talk through any major business goals associated with the changeover. Enable them to be a sounding board for the leadership team, as well.
Change is constant and a necessary facet in the business world, even in a multifamily industry that had previously been slow to adapt to new trends. Having the flexibility and the forthrightness to make change is the first step. Making certain to properly manage that changeover is just as important.