MRI Ascend: Key takeaways for property managers and strata managers

“Giving organisations the freedom to transform the way communities live, work and play through the industry’s most comprehensive, flexible, open and connected technology platform.” That is the mission of MRI Software and the central theme of the first-ever virtual MRI Ascend conference held last 22 July 2020.  

With panel discussions from MRI leadership and associatesand sessions from a wide range of experts in real estate and technology – attendees gained insights to industry trends and learned about the innovations that are available today and in the near future for MRI Software customers. If you missed the event or need a quick recap, here are key takeaways from the conference. 

MRI’s recent acquisitions reflect its continued investment in the residential space in the ANZ market 

Last year saw MRI’s acquisition of Rockend – ANZ’s leading property management software and strata management software provider for 40+ years – well known for products such as Property Tree, Strata master, and Rest Professional“It’s a momentous event in the history of MRI and the property market as a whole”, says Patrick Ghilani, CEO of MRI Software. By being part of the MRI family, Rockend dramatically strengthened MRI’s presence in ANZ.”  

Indeed, the joint innovations and achievement of MRI and Rockend are the reason why 50% of all professionally managed Australian rental properties and 35% of strata lots are managed using MRI applications today.  

Further expanding MRI’s reach in the residential space is the addition of acquisition of Castleton  a leading software provider in the community and social housing sector. To date, MRI has over 60 community housing clients and about 30 MRI Associates dedicated in the community housing space. 

With these new additions to the residential suiteMRI’s offerings and expertise in the APAC region have grown to encompass residential property management, strata management and community housing, along with the existing commercial and investment management base. “Our residential solutions offer even more depth and breadth to help you and your clients improve the communities where people live, work and play,” Ghilani concludes. 

The property and strata management solutions you know and love are now under the MRI Living group of products 

 

An open and connected ecosystem is our mission at MRI and a key part of this are our solutions for the residential space which will now be referred to as MRI Living. MRI Living includes the familiar, market-leading products you useProperty Tree, Rest Professional and Strata Master, as well as new solutions like Secure SignMaintenance PlusBusiness Insights and Castleton in the social housing sector.  

It’s a fresh perspective of looking into the people that uses MRI Software and people that benefit from our software,” says David Bowie, Senior Vice-President and Managing Director for APAC of MRI Software. It’s about helping people and helping our customers create communities that thrive.” 

MRI Living, together with our partner community and our products in the commercial space sits on top of the MRI Platform, providing you with a robust and secure enterprise software platform to manage your business. 

New and upcoming feature enhancements in MRI’s property management solutions will transform the way you work, delight landlords and simplify living for tenants 

Strategic Industry Principal, Josh Symons and Product Innovation Head, Paul Wahltuch shared the developments made in our property and strata management solutions over the past 12 months as well as upgrades you can expect to see coming up: 

  1. Profile Summary and Tabbed view in MRI Property Tree 7-month long revamp of the UI of one some of Property Tree’s most visited pages culminated in the new Profile Summary view. It is now much easier to access the key tenant, property, and owner information you need all in one screen, allowing you to be more effective in identifying and resolving issues.
  2. MRI Maintenance Plus – Now available in Early Adopter Program for Property Tree customers. Provides an all in one maintenance solution with auto invoicing, tenant, landlords and tradespeople mobile apps and advanced business rules engine to alert you with follow-ups. 
  3. MRI Property ConnectA first in the industry, and just recently releasedMRI Property Connect is a mobile app that gives tenants access to real time property information and documentation and gives them a direct way to communicate with their property manager. By syncing all those communications to Property Tree, it provides property managers a continued history of communication with tenants. This solution is part of the Property Tree subscription and activation comes at no additional cost.
  4. Lease Creation WorkflowThe introduction of MRI Secure Signreleased in April, established the foundation for an entirely digital lease creation workflow in Property Tree, which will soon be available to usersWith this feature, you now have ability to have a full lease creation workflow using standard state leases embedded inside Property Tree, auto-populate the data into the lease agreement and send out to your customers to for signature. 

New solutions and partnerships in Strata Master will further enhance your user experience as cloud solution remains a priority 

In the strata management space, we continue to make improvements in our desktop application, Strata Master and tirelessly work on getting it ready for the cloud. Walhtuch explains, “While we haven’t made the progress we would’ve liked to in our cloud solution over the last few years, it remains our key priority.”  

In the meantime, the MRI team remains steadfast in its commitment to developing the desktop application. Here are the two headline features that were announced for Strata Master v12.5, one of our biggest releases ever coming out in September: 

  1. Direct Debit – This new feature will allow Macquarie bank customers to debit funds themselves rather than relying on manual payment from customers 
  2. Online Invoice approval – Delivers the ability to streamline your external invoice approval process and internalize and streamline that huge amount of work that happens to get these invoices approved by multiple committee members and then paid to creditors involved. 

Also coming soon are partnership opportunities that will allow you to partner with more service providers that can enhance Strata Master’s amazing trust accounting with the capabilities you need. “We’re experimenting with new tech that will enable web-based APIs for your desktop Strata Master installation,” shared Wahltuch. He further noted that partnerships are one of MRI’s strengths and that exploring this technology will open the door to provide MRI’s own cloud-based services and lead to a broader cloud-based solution. 

New technologies under the MRI umbrella of products opens exciting possibilities for innovation in the residential space 

The acquisition of Leverton last year gave MRI access to the machine-learning engine that’s currently being used for lease abstraction. This Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology can be further explored to create applications in the residential space such as invoice abstraction to extract data and can be coupled with Property Tree’s Invoice Genius and Strata Master’s new invoice automation capability. Even beyond the horizon, AI can be applied to analyzing incoming communications, allowing property and strata managers to get ahead of the problem, prioritizing their response and regaining control of potentially bad situations. 

Customercentric technology now and in the future 

Through all the developments announced in MRI Ascendwhat remains at the heart of it all are our customers – property managers and strata managers like you who face the challenges of the changing times day in and day out. 

Ghilani in the opening keynote of the event expressed this same sentiment: “Progress never stops, and the need for change is what drives our innovation. It’s the reason why we develop open and connected systems that empower our clients and partners to conquer the challenges of today and anticipate the future with confidence. It is and always will be at the forefront of how we look at the software.” 

More on MRI Ascend

Watch full MRI Ascend sessions on-demand and hear from industry leaders, MRI Executive and Product Managers covering client case studies, product deep dives, industry issues and more.

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