Top Tech Tools to Watch in 2019

More than 140 exhibitors showcased the latest innovations at NMHC's OpTech Conference & Exposition. See which new products are changing the industry.

The National Multifamily Housing Council’s 2018 OpTech Conference and Exposition brought in thousands of attendees to Orlando from Nov. 14-16, filling rooms of panel discussions to a massive exhibiting show floor. With more than 140 companies showcasing the newest products and technology hitting the multifamily market, it’s tough to keep track of the latest and greatest innovations. Below are four products from the show to watch for in 2019. 

TransitScreen

TransitScreen

Transportation is a huge amenity that residents are constantly looking for the latest updates on. TransitScreen is a lobby-based display that offers all nearby mobility options and real-time information regarding them. These are customized for each property and include traditional public transit like trains, buses and subways, as well as newer, private options like Lyft, Uber, and electric scooters. The product can also include resident messaging, nearby amenities, and traffic information. In addition to this, the platform also offers an app called CityMotion. It is location-based and provides a quick view of every mobility option nearby, just like TransitScreen, but in your hand. This can also be branded with the property logo and information, plus messages from the property manager.

Aptly

Aptly platform

The Aptly platform is multifamily’s first CRM powered by artificial intelligence, which allows property managers to streamline operations between the property and resident on one site. Residents get their own profiles that include information such as their location, lease data, contact information and engagement, allowing managers to fully interact with them on an individual basis. Communities also have profiles that include a full list of residents, staff and building information. Management can be given specific tasks to work on pertaining to lease renewals, maintenance requests, appointments and more, to ensure each need is handled. Alerts can be sent out when the emails are opened or clicked on, as well as being able to read teammate responses in real time to avoid duplicate replies and work orders. The AI technology analyzes incoming messages and suggests categories and automated responses, as well as surveys to generate stronger feedback after closing tasks. It can also covert emails to leads, schedule online tours, visualize the leasing process, and offer personalized follow up messages. 

HelloPackage 

HelloPackage room

Package management is a growing theme within multifamily that is growing day by day. Instead of offering a traditional locker method, HelloPackage is a custom designed SaaS system with an enabling, plug and play hardware component. The solution focuses on the technology behind package delivery, designed to allow carriers to quickly and easily deliver packages to the room, while also notifying residents. The hardware consists of custom designed shelving with weight sensors, label reading and surveillance cameras, check-in tablets and local processing and communications equipment. Optical character reading software reads each package label as it is scanned into the system by the carrier. Once placed on a shelf, the HelloPackage system is able to identify and continuously track the package location using patent pending weight sensor technology built into each shelf, which captures the package’s weight down to the gram. This information is then used tie the resident’s name and package together. 

Grace Hill 

Vision by Grace Hill system

Vision by Grace Hill combines its Learning Management System with professional skills and compliance training courses in one platform. Whether onboarding new staff members or refreshing the skills of your current team, the Grace Hill platform provides one place to control assignments and track performance. The platform allows for customizable assignments to narrow down specific training for a certain employee’s position, automates training and schedules it across the board, provides assessment and reporting, as well as compliance courses to reduce risk within a company. The system can be specifically designed for any team at any location, and narrows down the exact courses that staff want to offer, along with the latest multifamily laws and compliance coursework. Training can be added or taken away at any time, and consistently updated to fit the needs of the specific team goals. Course examples include telephone techniques, building a team culture, business ethics, crisis management, customer service, employee engagement and more.