Building a strong voice of the customer program in property management

As customers demand more direct engagement with businesses they associate with, Voice of Customer (VoC) programs have become part of the core business strategy for many organisations. VoC programs are also starting to gain traction in the real estate and property management sectors, as it puts a strong focus on understanding the customer – who are at the heart of any real estate business.

What is Voice of the Customer?

In essence, Voice of the Customer is listening to your customer’s feedback about their experience with your products or services. The process involves gathering and analysing this feedback, so you’re able to make highly informed business decisions in meeting customer needs and expectations. While gathering feedback has always been part of business growth, VoC takes it a step further by “closing the loop” – that is, acting on your customers’ insights to improve a product or service.

VoC Data and Customer Experience

VoC programs hinge on addressing customer expectations – making it an essential part of your Customer Experience (CX) strategy. Without customer feedback, it will be difficult to know how you can improve the experience of landlords and tenants. VoC data gives you valuable insight into your customer’s experiences – helping you uncover trends and opportunities to improve satisfaction and customer engagement across the customer journey.

How to build a Voice of the Customer program in real estate

Starting a voice of the customer program requires organisational change, both to how teams within your business interact with customers and with each other. Here are a few tips to help you get started.

1. Collect and monitor feedback efficiently
There are various methods to gather customer insights, but in choosing which method or system to use, it’s crucial to make sending that all-important feedback easy for your customers. Equally important is how accessible the system is for your product team to be able to monitor comments overtime and highlight what the majority of your customers want. At MRI Software, our User Voice forum is the online forum where customers can make suggestions on how we can improve our products, these suggestions can then be voted on by other customers, giving our product team a clear picture on improvements that will make a big difference for our client base.

2. Distribute feedback to internal stakeholders
As feedback can come from different sources, using different methods, it’s important that the right information falls to the right people or team responsible to action them. Create a process or playbook within your organisation that identifies ownership when it comes to responding and routing customer inputs from various channels – emails, social media, surveys, etc. VoC best practices highlights the importance of acting on customer feedback, so internal stakeholders should be able respond quickly in letting customers know that they’ve been heard and explain how you plan to address their concerns.

3. Discuss and analyse customer feedback
Customer feedback will uncover problems and opportunities within your organisation and focus groups will play an important role in reviewing this information to understand what’s affecting the customers. Getting the right people from the right organisations involved in this review process will provide a more holistic view in coming up with effective solutions. At MRI, we recently launched the Customer Advisory Board (CAB), bringing together 20 industry leaders that represent tens of thousands of properties across Australia and New Zealand to better understand the trends and challenges impacting the real estate industry, helping us at MRI develop solutions that support our customers in the best way possible.

4. Design with the user’s perspective in mind
In designing changes, it is best to follow a user-centric approach. Getting actual users involved in shaping improvements ensure that products and services directly benefit them. After all, the best people to ask what works and what doesn’t in your products and services are the people who use them. This collaborative relationship also puts emphasis on how much you value your customer’s feedback in making their experience that much better.

Here at MRI Software, we engage our customers to get involved in improving the products they use through our Early Adopters Program (EAP). With EAP, we encourage our user community to provide real-life user experience testing of new feature development across our product suite.

5. Close the loop with customers
The true value of any VoC program lies in the implementation of the insights you’ve gained to areas in your business that will drive the biggest change. It is important to keep in mind that while owners and tenants directly give feedback on the product and services you offer, it will also affect processes within your organisation that help deliver these improvements. These organisational changes ultimately lead to better CX and improve speed of delivery.

A Voice of the Customer program can provide your real estate business with actionable insights that can create amazing experiences for your customers. Moreover, it is also a valuable tool within your organisation to improve processes, providing you with insights from the very people who drives growth and revenue to your business.

Learn more about delivering amazing client experiences

Delivering an amazing owner and tenant experience is part of the property manager’s mission – to do right by the people that live in your community and contribute to their well-being. Download this free eBook to learn how technology can help transform the way you engage with your clients.

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