Do you remember the days before you could do everything from your phone? How did property managers keep track of all your tasks and paperwork before email, Google Drive and a smartphone?
Truthfully, you probably had less to do then. But since technology allows us to be connected all the time, we can get much more work done (and still have more work to do).
All that work can be frustrating and overwhelming. Even if you already use property management software with mobile features to optimize your day-to-day tasks, you may need a few other apps to manage your to-do list, calendar and maintenance tracking.
But which apps will actually make your life easier? Well, property managers (like you) told us! We recently surveyed our customers directly and asked about their preferred task management apps. Here are a few of our favorite selections, sorted by function:
Manage Your To-Do List
To-do lists can get way out of hand, and keeping track of them is a task in itself. Here are some online apps that will take you beyond Post-It Notes.
This is a fast, easy, simple way to keep track of your to-do list. Any.do organizes tasks by “Today,” “Tomorrow,” and “Someday.” Plus, it syncs easily across your devices.
It supports automated text responses to missed calls, as well. One button, and you’ve responded, “Sorry, in a meeting. Will call back soon!”
Evernote is part note-taker, part project manager. Depending on the plan you choose, you can do anything from taking simple notes using text or voice to attaching emails, Google docs and images. Scan in business cards, receipts or other notes to attach to projects.
You can create mood boards, to-do lists, or create organized projects. Everything is shareable with other users and all of your notes sync to all your devices. You can also use their tagging function to make things easy to find.
If you already use Evernote, you’ll love Todoist. It easily syncs tasks between Todoist and Evernote, and converts Evernote folders into Todoist tasks. If you use Google Calendar and Github, data will sync in real time with those apps, as well.
Capture and prioritize tasks. Map out projects with subtasks. And set daily or weekly goals and track your productivity over time.
This is a simple app for creating checklists and notes that you can share with anyone who has a Google account. Dictate notes by using Google Voice. You can also capture images or create drawings in the app. You can then color-code or use labels to organize your notes and lists.
This app is free for Android.
Keep Track of Projects and Staff
Sure, you can use a spreadsheet to track projects, but you know how quickly spreadsheets can get unruly. Instead, try one of these apps to keep everyone involved on the same page in real time.
Trello works on a kanban methodology to organize bigger projects. Basically it’s a visual way to organize project tasks and assign them to different members of your team. Work moves through a series of cards, or stages as its subtasks are completed.
When a team member starts a task, they can move it to In Progress, and move it again to Done when they finish. They can make notes on their progress and attach images, receipts and other relevant documents. It’s also easy to create templates that outline and divide a task into smaller steps.
This organization app is similar to Trello in that it helps you organize work. But it’s a bit more involved. It allows you to view projects in calendar, list or board view and, depending on the level of service you choose, it gives you a lot more control over the setup of your projects. You can also integrate a number of other powerful apps, like Adobe Creative Cloud with your Asana projects.
Survey Residents and Owners
Need feedback from your residents or property owners? Collect information you can use to improve your property, get feedback on services or add new amenities with these apps.
SurveyMonkey allows you to create custom surveys or use one of their templates. You can send them out via email, or post them to social media or your website. You can then filter, analyze and export the results.
QuickTap survey can create a number of different surveys. Then you can collect the data for analysis both online and offline. Create contests and pick random winners to increase resident engagement.
You can even turn tablets into kiosks. Place them outside function rooms to gather feedback on them.
Monitor Neighborhood Crime
Keeping on top of crime and other incidents in your neighborhood is an important task for you and your team. By knowing what’s happening, you can alert owners and residents to safety hazards, plan appropriate security measures for your property and keep a lookout for recurring problems.
The Citizen safety app is currently serving the following major metropolitan areas in the U.S.: New York, San Francisco Bay, Baltimore, Los Angeles and Philadelphia.
It alerts users to crime and other 911 emergencies in their area, including accidents, missing persons and lockdowns.
They went live in Philadelphia in April 2019 and plan on expanding to other metro areas in the U.S.
Nextdoor creates a private social network for your neighborhood. It actually goes beyond neighborhood safety. Neighbors can communicate about anything having to do with the neighborhood, including events, services and advice.
Maintain the Pool
Yup, there’s an app for that, too. Pools can be tricky, but with these apps, you can spend less time testing and maintaining and more time concentrating on other tasks.
This basic pool maintenance app from BetterWay Apps, LLC features a handy pool maintenance checklist, as well as a calculator that shows your pool maintenance staff exactly which chemicals to use to keep the pool sanitary, and how much to use to achieve the proper concentrations.
This app is $0.99 for iOS.
Insta-LINK from LaMotte goes a step further: Dip a special test strip in the water, and take a photo of it using the app. The app will then tell you exactly which chemicals to add to keep your pool safe, or give you enough information to alert your pool vendor.
Manage Operations (Property Management Platform Apps)
Downloading a whole bunch of individual apps to cover all your property management operations is time consuming and confusing. You may need an app just to manage…your apps! That’s why property management software exists and is accompanied by mobile-ready options that centralize your key processes for residents and owners.
With the Buildium app (of course we had to mention it!), property managers can receive maintenance requests, manage tasks and work orders and track their progress. Property managers can also communicate with residents and staff efficiently. They can collect and track rent payments, and even look up residents for lease and contact information. All of this is synced with a property manager’s account so the information is always up-to-date for you and your team. If a resident approaches you unexpectedly in the field with a rent payment, you’ll be able to record it.
Property managers are always on the go, and getting back to the office to check a payment or create a work order is a real waste of time. All of the apps we mentioned are there to help make your job easier and get your work done in the moment.
Which apps have you used to organize your day? Share them in the comments section below.Read more on Scaling