In this week’s episode of MRI Software’s Whiteboard Wednesday, you’ll hear from Katie Klein, Product Owner for MRI Residential Management. If you’re in charge of residential inspections, you’ll want to hear what Katie has to say. Katie covers some of the common challenges of using a paper-based inspections system and how property inspection software can help.
Katie Klein: Hi, everyone. My name is Katie Klein and I’m the product owner for Residential Management here at MRI Software. This week on Whiteboard Wednesdays, we’re going to talk about inspections, paper versus digital. If you’re like many of our residential management folks, you do inspections. You probably do these weekly, monthly, maybe even daily. If you’re using a paper inspection system, you might be running into some issues with this. We’re really starting to see a shift in the market more towards an electronic inspection system that’s really making life a lot easier for our clients.
Today, I want to talk about some different points and what the challenges can be with a paper inspection and how you can solve for that by switching over to a digital inspection system instead. First off, I want to talk about legibility. We might not all have the best handwriting and filling out a paper form especially when you’re walking around it’s probably just on a clipboard and you’re doing multiple inspections, you might not always have the most legible information. It might not always be 100% consistent. People may not fill out every single section that’s on that form.
How do we solve for that with a digital inspection system? You can have a pre-created template for your service managers who are out in the field. They can have either a mobile device or a tablet and they’re just keying in the information. Now, your inspections are consistent and completely legible. That one’s covered. Let’s talk about accessibility. If you’re doing paper inspections, you probably have a lot of paper inspections. You’re probably saving these for several years so we’re talking about filing cabinets of inspections. If you need to pull one of those inspections quickly, it might not be quick.
Then you have to talk about grabbing photos. Photos are another issue because they might be in an email, they might be on a camera drive somewhere, and they’re not even attached to that paper form. If you need to access this information, this can be a struggle, and you can lose valuable labor hours trying to find these inspections. The way we solve for that with a digital system is by making these reports all available for you at the touch of a button. Everything is labeled, everything has a date on it, and everything is easily accessible all in one place for you.
Time-stamped. This one is huge. The reports that you’re creating using a digital system like we already mentioned, it’s a template that is consistent across all of your inspections, whether you’re doing common area, walkthroughs, or move in and move out. It’s always consistent, you’ve now attached all of your photos to that inspection and most importantly everything is time-stamped.
If you have to come to court and talk about a dispute that you might have with a resident over some damages charges, you can have comparison reports created depending on what you’re using to show those pictures with time stamp for a move-in report and same photos of the same areas for the move out also time-stamped. You really have indisputable proof available at your fingertips.
Multiple photos. We already mentioned how photos are helpful but with many of the tools today, you can attach multiple photos per line item. You can have such thorough documentation and you’re not taking up space on an SD card, you’re not digging through emails, you’re not trying to find maybe even print it out photos. Everything is attached and in one place.
Then easy reporting. You’ve gathered all of this information and now you can find it in one place. It’s easily accessible. Maybe you’ve even attached your logo on to the report. Now, it’s not just any inspection form, it’s your inspection form. Finally and most importantly is consistency. You need to have consistency with your inspections so that you can do trend reporting across your different portfolios year over year so that you can make sure that you are providing your residents with the best safe environment that they can possibly have and the best living experience.
That’s all I have to talk about today. If you’re interested in switching your paper-based inspection system over to a digital inspection system, give your account rep at MRI a call. Thank you.