In France, it’s mandatory for condominiums to be professionally managed. Just like it’s required to have car or home insurance, rules like this work to shift the biggest financial risks away from individual consumers. In condo management (same with insurance companies), it sometimes means older, legacy vendors corner the market without being challenged by disruptors. However, as in the insurance industry, incumbents can only avoid the forces of technology and innovation for so long.
Homeland is a property management company serving condominium owners and their renters in France. Since many condo management companies have been managing their buildings for decades, they can be less responsive and less transparent. Many are still using entirely paper records and billing processes!
Homeland offers a much more modern, simple, and transparent service for their customers. It’s the only condo management company in France to offer 24/7 responses, with service providers dispatched in less than 2 hours for most common issues. On top of that, Homeland can do this at a reduced fee, as well as cutting buildings’ carbon footprints by modernizing and optimizing buildings.
Managing 4,300 weekly emails with a team of 110
With over 450 buildings under their management today, Homeland’s 110 employees have their work cut out for them. Across six teams (including accounting and customer support), they have to respond to more than 4,300 new conversations in a typical week. (That doesn’t include existing conversation threads!)
And on top of that, the company plans to expand to over 3,000 buildings by the year 2025. Imagine how many messages they’ll have to handle by then! (If the ratio stays the same, you don’t have to imagine: it would be over 28,500. 😱 Good thing that’s no problem Front can’t handle!)
While Homeland’s customers are the condominium owners’ associations, their business relies on keeping residents happy. And that means lightning fast responses. They used to use Zendesk to handle incoming requests, but it was impossible for multiple team members to collaborate on any given conversation. It would typically take more than one person to manage a customer issue, so Zendesk wasn’t an option.
When you need to route and respond to thousands of messages as a team, you need a much more collaborative support solution. You need Front!
Switching from Zendesk for better cross-functional collaboration
Homeland used Zendesk for 6 months before switching to Front in 2017. All 110 employees across 6 teams use Front to receive messages and dispatch them using automated rules to the right team and person based on the customer’s question.
It’s simple for other teams or employees to be tagged or mentioned into a conversation when their expertise is needed.
To help get responses out faster, Homeland implemented SLA rules in Front for specific contacts. The most urgent issues can be prioritized and the SLA tag makes sure nothing falls through the cracks.
Cutting reply time by 7 hours on average
With Front, Homeland has slashed reply time by an average of 7 hours over the last 6 months. (Front’s analytics help them keep track of response time). A big part of achieving such a dramatic improvement has been message templates in Front. With easily customizable templates that can be loaded up with a click, Homeland handles most messages in 5 minutes on average.
With response times that fast and service that good, Homeland has built up a competitive advantage versus other condo management companies. The only way to succeed in that industry is to be super reactive. You also have to offer qualitative and contextual answers — fast. That takes a ton of collaboration behind the scenes between property managers, accountants, legal advisors, suppliers, and many more.
Lastly, you can’t improve without closely monitoring the underlying numbers of both customer satisfaction and operational efficiency. Luckily for Homeland, Front offers exactly those capabilities: lightning-fast responses, simple cross-functional collaboration, and insightful analytics.