L’Oréal’s “because I’m worth it” is pretty unlikely to impress management, building owners and tenants. Owners and investors are becoming more data-driven, tenants and brokers are raising their expectations. As a result, property managers need to get on their numbers game – quantifying their performance and measuring productivity.
The traditional, old-school sense of property management is all about running around, putting out fires, reacting to problems. Proactivity and visibility are just as critical – and characteristic of today’s successful property manager. If property managers can illustrate that they are providing great service, they themselves are of more value to the building. If they can differentiate themselves from other property managers and from their peers, then they can also differentiate themselves from outside of the company.
So how do you not only run an efficient building and reduce expenses but also prove that you are doing both successfully?
Three not-so-little words: Operations Performance Management. Get it going with four steps:
1. Ready, Set Priorities & Targets
Set goals and benchmarks to establish and measure true links between activities and results. Look within and outside the industry for KPIs that measure how well you are doing on achieving your organizational objectives. Learn the steps to establishing KPIs and the basic property measurement metrics that you should be tracking.
If you’re not benchmarking, you’re not improving. Watch this bonus clip from our recent webinar “Managing Property Performance” for tips on approaching benchmarking.
2. New Game: Capture The Data
Use a centralized system to track data from all daily property management activities, including service responsiveness, tenant satisfaction, asset maintenance, risk management and employee productivity. Measure this data against your set goals (see #1). Web-based systems are preferred as they allow you to access information and tasks on-the-go, integrate with other systems easily, and share information quickly through an online, centralized database.
Whatever system you choose, it must be able to produce appropriate reports and analytics that not only show performance but also measure performance against your targets.
3. “What Gets Measured, Get’s Managed.”
Raw operations data doesn’t mean much in vast quantities on its own. Use rich reporting and Key Performance Indicators to inform decision making. The top of the food chain cares about the numbers. This means that “Proof of Value” should ultimately be quantifiable in all cases.
4. Act – Proof Is in the Performance Numbers
Use the insight into operational activities and performance results gained from steps 1-3 to inform your decision making and attack that NOI. Use Operations Performance Management to influence performance daily, make adept decisions quickly and respond to events in the market. KPIs should be used not only to reflect performance at the operational level but also to connect the dots and form a big picture at the organizational level.
Finally, with numbers and initiatives in hand, if you’ve got it, flaunt it! Establish a formal review process or meeting with your manager/owner/client to demonstrate the targets and expectations you’ve met and/or exceeded.