AppFolio Property Manager
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Table of Contents
1.0 Introduction 4
2.0 Background 5
2.1 Extent 5
2.2 Evidence 5
2.3 Origin 6
2.4 Causes 6
2.5 Attempts at Solutions 7
3.0 Statement of Need 7
4.0 Evidence 8
5.0 Plan of Action 10
5.1 What do you plan to do? 10
5.2 How do you plan to do it? 11
5.3 Personnel 11
5.4 Facilities 11
5.5 Equipment 11
6.0 Budget 11
7.0 Funding 12
8.0 Schedule 12
9.0 Evaluation 12
10.0 Conclusions/Recommendations 13
Competition among businesses is constantly growing more intense due to advancements made in the technology industry. Corporate executives seek out for opportunities to establish a property management business that can be relied on. There are different forms of software designed for a property management business. AppFolio has been the recommended solution to all software problems relative to property business management. Real Estate companies are in search of software that can completely meet the requirement demands of their businesses. Prior to developing or procuring an information system, business owners need to be sure that such form of measure will really be a potent solution to conduct a diagnosis of a present organizational situation as well as a determination of implementing change measures. Employees are the most vital part of the business hence they should be efficient and productive during working hours. The use of an efficient and effective web-based solution is a must. This paper explores the advantages of AppFolio and proposed solutions for many property management software problems.
Competition among businesses is constantly growing more intense due to advancements made in the technology industry. Entrepreneurs and big companies realize the importance of keeping in touch with technology to fuel expansion of business. Corporate executives seek out for opportunities to establish a property management business that can be relied on.
There are different forms of software designed for a property management business. However, some of the software developed has the tendency of corrupting data. Business owners complained about inability to post commissions and obtaining all incorrect data. Crashing of property business management software created panic and overwhelming challenges to companies and personnel. In Golden Gate Properties Inc., the present process of updating, maintaining data is oriented manually with very minimum chances of data recovery. Physical co-ordination of departments increases, obtainability of data is overloaded and the accessible information is unorganized and thus, its usage becomes a hard task. Furthermore in the past years the number of assets under Golden Gate Management has considerably increased.
AppFolio has been the recommended solution to all software problems relative to property business management. This paper presents the advantages in using AppFolio as alternative to previous property business management software. Throughout the course of this paper, an analysis of AppFolio design will be illustrated along with a proposed budget plan for its incorporation to property businesses.
Real Estate companies are in search of software that can completely meet the requirement demands of their businesses. Companies are aware of the significance of technology in making things easier. Business dealings and access to information are quicker with the use of modern devices. However, companies were not fully satisfied with the kind of software that they have chosen to run company`s transactions.
Rick Ebert, owner of Austin Landmark Property Services, began as a real estate agent in Texas. In the past, the company used PROMAS for their business. However, Ebert felt the need to have a product that can render satisfaction to immediate requirements of the business (AppFolio, Inc., 2010). Duke Dodson, CEO of Dodson Property Management, cited the use of Rent Manager online. However, Dodson Company merely utilized the minimum features incorporated in the software and did other tasks manually (AppFolio, Inc. 2010). Lois Moore, property owner and manager, made use of Yardi Pro System which later on corrupted the data of the company. Corey Runnels, Operations In-Charge of MC3 Multifamily, confessed using Propertyware and Quickbooks for accounting. Nonetheless, the company was still looking for a solution that could streamline the business operation (AppFolio, Inc., 2012). Michelle McLinden, General Manager of the Western Montana Chapter of NARPM, made use of PropertyView`s Peak Property Management Software (AppFolio, Inc., 2010). However, the team found the software expensive and complicated. The company also tried software such as Yardi, Rent Manager, PropertyBoss, and PropertyWare (AppFolio, Inc., 2010). Connie Miller, part-owner of MK Property Management, stated the use of Buildium property management software for the business. However, Miller was not satisfied with the accounting infrastructure of Buildium (AppFolio, Inc., 2009).
The growing rate of competition in real estate businesses has stimulated the companies` drive to seek for innovation and improvement in their operations. As the business progresses, business owners realize the need to work smarter with technology. The need for change in software that could render the optimal results for the company is highly sought for. Companies are also looking for user-friendly software that can deliver positive outcomes.
Real estate companies have used various forms of property management software in the hope of advancing and making their business operations easier to navigate. But the problem seemed to have worsened. PROMAS failed to provide satisfaction to direct requirements of the business. Rent Manager online has minimal features and necessitates companies to perform the other tasks manually. Propertyware and Quickbooks fail to simplify the business operation. PropertyView`s Peak Property Management Software was expensive and complex to use. Buildium has poor accounting infrastructure.
2.5 Attempts at Solutions
Real estate companies attempted to solve the problem by shifting to AppFolio because of the unlimited benefits that the software offers. Web-based software uses the internet. Simply put, business owners can access data anytime and anywhere they are – from the office, from home, on a vacation, from mobile devices. With web-based software, there is no need to pay for upgrades and support since these are generally included in the package. In addition, there is no need to purchase, upgrade, or maintain server hardware. Web-based software is easy to use.
3.0 Statement of Need
Golden Gate Properties Inc. is a growing real estate business. The company is currently doing manual updating of data. When the data is corrupted, there are minimum chances of recovery. Because of the expanding business, there is also an increase in the physical coordination of departments. Obtainability of data becomes overloaded and the information in not organized well. Thus, usage of information becomes a daunting task for the company. In the recent years, there had also been a massive increase in the number of assets of Golden Gate Management. The need to have a system that can appropriately manage the data is the topmost concern of the company. Management information system will assist managers with the devices for evaluating, organizing, and professionally running their departments. Management information will also improve supervision and quality control, with the information system that is built as well as maintained properly then any activity in the business environment may be monitored constantly. Monitoring is indeed an impact on boosting control over each procedure as well as activity occurring in the company. With MIS, the workers can focus on other things than that of data management. Retrieving any information becomes very simple and it may be retried fast in no time.
Prior to developing or procuring an information system, business owners need to be sure that such form of measure will really be a potent solution to conduct a diagnosis of a present organizational situation as well as a determination of implementing change measures. The use of information technology for reinforcing improvement in organizations is extensive that people tend to take them for granted. In order to improve practices in the workplace, it is significant to eradicate problems but not to lessen the strength. It is essential to acquire knowledge of strengths in the organization. Diverse strengths are recognized and linked together so as to seek critical causes as well as effects. To recognize if a certain thing is strength or a problem, it is necessary to have reference points to compare with. The concept of a business procedure is vital for these approaches.
In a real estate business with increasing assets, the integration of computers in the enhancement of business practices has been vital. Increased historical profitability in the industry has enticed competition and resulted to a maturing of the industry. Globalization trends have reached the industry with global actors joining the local markets. The inflow of funds increases the capital and at the same time increase demand for achievement targets. According to Markowitz (1991), a logical investor makes the most of the expected return at a given risk level. The business of a company consists of various activities. To obtain the return targets and establish value in a short period demands a clear strategy and MIS is part of this.
AppFolio is an MIS that help businesses grow. Rick Ebert shifted to AppFolio because of the web-based solution`s strong impact on customer service. AppFolio is also sensitive to the needs of the company. AppFolio accepts feedback and implements on it. The use of AppFolio uses web browser to obtain real-time data. This lessens the cumbersome waiting periods which Ebert`s employees previously experienced. The user-friendly AppFolio provided comfort to the employees thus giving a high return on investment (AppFolio Inc., 2010). With AppFolio, there is no use of having an instruction manual because of its easy usability. AppFolio is used to power websites and some companies are using marketing tools to post vacancies on the internet. This has enabled them to save 40 to 60 hours a month to utilize combined marketing tools for posting vacancies. Through AppFolio, companies like Dodson Property Management are able to save 16 to 24 hours a month on tasks done regularly including paying owners, and developing owner statements. AppFolio is also used on the iPad to let the tenant view houses. This assists managers in saving time and in leasing the properties at a faster rate. With AppFolio, the company is able to work on orders even when they are in the field. Using the iPad for maintenance work order on site is a lot easier. Corey Runnells (2012) cited the accounting functionality of AppFolio. By incorporating accounting in the business, the company is able to save some money. AppFolio enables fast tracking of a prospect and help them move in as a new resident. AppFolio is easy to read as compared to the conventional screening reports.
Employees are the most vital part of the business hence they should be efficient and productive during working hours. When employees spend time in waiting until the software used by the company works, or in backing up as well as restoring data and seeking ways to manage older technology, then employees are not being productive. They are merely wasting most their time. With easy to use and fast property management software, employees spend less amount of period on routine tasks. Most of their time will be spent on activities that will bring happiness to customers. Employees will be able to work on seeking new clients and filling vacancies.
5.0 Plan of Action
With the help of management information system, property management personnel can enter the data from a web browser or mobile application to a central database and other departments may directly view it directly from their computers in real time. The system will allow the company to analyze the data using graphical reports and increase the consumer satisfaction since good management information system will accelerate the process and the time needed to serve a client reduced. The property management system is should low cost and low maintenance but easy to use and web-based solution. There is possibly of mobile application integration. A good information system should be supported by on-the-cloud database provided a vendor. The system would be used by the operations staff at Golden Gate properties as well as management to plan future growth strategy. The existing data would be processed, integrated, and kept in a centralized database where it is updated constantly and made accessible to all who have the right to access it, in a form that suits their need. The plan can be implemented by taking technical resources of AppFolio Inc. along with the project delivery team at Golden Gate properties. Since the database infrastructure is mainly on-the-cloud service, the migration of the data can be done over a period of six months. AppFolio Inc. transfers current database`s tenant, owner and vendor data into the AppFolio database system.
5.1 What do you plan to do?
The plan of action for Golden Gate is to utilize the most effective web-based solution in managing business online. Making use of AppFolio would be a wise move since the web-based solution offers various benefits to the company. AppFolio makes work easier and accessibility becomes more comfortable. Time is used productively in dealing with work-related tasks rather than in dealing with errors in software. AppFolio also accepts feedback and implements the feedback thereby delivering satisfaction to the company.
5.2 How do you plan to do it?
* Secure an internet connection. Ideally use a broadband connection.
* Secure a compatible browser such as Mozilla Firefox or Internet Explorer.
* Secure a .PDF file reader for generating reports.
* Log in to AppFolio and set up an account.
* Navigate and study the site.
Employees of the company must be trained on how to use AppFolio.
The company must make sure that there is a stable internet connection in order to use the web-based solution.
Computers and mobile devices will be used to navigate the site.
AppFolio Property Management software has a monthly Cost (1 Year) of $200 which is the same monthly cost if the company uses it for three years. The company offer volume discounts such that for every 200 units minimum, the company will have to pay $200/mo. With a flat fee of $1000, the company will have the opportunity to post vacancies on websites. These websites are automated by AppFolio. Companies will also be able to post pictures and produce HTML brochures. Through AppFolio, the company will be able to save $4800 because there will be no more need to use paper, postage, and ink. IPads will have to be bought for the team to access AppFolio. AppFolio also enables companies to save $20,800 because of its integrated online rent payment system. In the past, companies pay $2,800 annually for PayLease. Such expenses are eradicated in AppFolio.
Funds for AppFolio will be taken from the company`s earnings. The investment is expected to have a massive rate of return with the great savings provided by AppFolio.
Implementation of the use of AppFolio can be started at any time since it is a web-based solution. Considering the great benefits that AppFolio has, this proposed solution will be approved in an immediate time. The web-based solution is not only advantageous to the company but also to the employees. Having the AppFolio can provide competitive edge to companies over their competitors.
The usability and accessibility of the property management software will constantly be monitored. Progress in the company`s operation will be updated monthly in order to know whether improvements have been made.
Companies have to be technologically advanced if they really aim for success. Being technologically advanced merely implies the use of the latest in technology such as software that can provide easy access to data or information. AppFolio is highly favored by companies because of its various advantages. Not only does AppFolio improve the operation of the business, it also ensures productivity to all employees.
Appfolio Inc. (2010). Austin Landmark Property Services, Inc. Chooses AppFolio To Fuel Business Growth.
Appfolio Inc. (2010). Dodson Property Management To Double Portfolio In 2011 With AppFolio.
Appfolio Inc. (2008). Lois Moore Moves from Yardi Professional to AppFolio in Less Than a Week.
Appfolio Inc. (2010). Interview with Corey Runnells of MC3 Multifamily.
Appfolio Inc. (2010). Real Estate Management Group Saves $20K A Year with AppFolio`s Online Rent Payments. [Accessed: 25 Sep 2013].
Appfolio Inc. (2010). Real Estate Management Group Saves $20K A Year with AppFolio`s Online Rent Payments.
Appfolio Inc. (2009). MK Property Management Finds More Time To Focus On Customers And Business Growth With AppFolio.
Appfolio Inc. (2010). AppFolio Property Manager User Guide.
Online-property-management-review.toptenreviews.com (2013). AppFolio Property Manager 2013 – TopTenREVIEWS. [online] Retrieved from: http://online-property-management-review.toptenreviews.com/appfolio-property-manager-review.html [Accessed: 25 Sep 2013].
Property-management-software.findthebest.com (2013). How much does AppFolio Property Manager property management software cost?. [online] Retrieved from: http://property-management-software.findthebest.com/q/1/3409/How-much-does-AppFolio-Property-Manager-property-management-software-cost [Accessed: 25 Sep 2013].
AppFolio Property Manager