Thursday 14th, the LMRE Living team tuned into the webinar hosted by the UKAA. Justin Harley from Yardi along with Ian Gibbs and Chris Armstrong from Get Living discussed "How operations, brand & technology come together during unprecedented times”.
Justin began with a Yardi update, noting trends they have seen over across their software platforms during Covid-19 lockdown. Firstly, resident app usage has doubled and secondly, downloads of their apps and utilisation of online tours have increased.
‘Pre Covid’ (PC) it was unproven whether certain aspects of tech were viewed out of interest rather than necessity. In this ‘With Covid’ (WC) world of self isolation, social distancing and extensive concerns about face to face interactions, these platforms have proven integral to business operations and the functioning property market. As the government lockdown restrictions reduce across the country, it will be interesting to measure the continued usage of tech in a WC world.
Chris and Ian from Get Living discussed how they have been coping and adapting with lockdown. Get Living over the last few months had been gearing up for their summer peak and 18 months ago ensured that their teams were equipped to be agile in their working with an ability to work remotely. This has proved invaluable over the last two months.
Get Living noted how advantageous it is to have team members with experience from multiple sectors rather than solely property. The breadth of team knowledge from hospitality through leisure sectors proved invaluable. They highlighted that colleagues felt more productive thanks to a significantly reduced commute and the speed of their response rate remains high. Both ensuring that resident service standards are maintained during these unprecedented times.
Through increasing their communication with residents, Get Living are ensuring they are offering mental health support to all. Event managers have also been hosting virtual quiz nights (with up to 500 quizzers), craft workshops via Zoom and are even planning a virtual speed dating night.
All webinar speakers agreed that the brand image formed during lockdown and the pandemic are likely cement how the companies are perceived long term and will help define their business. It has also highlighted to them, the need for all businesses to be digital ready and to combine their operations and technology strategies.