ACE Reduces Leasing Office and Call Center Hours for Top Apartment Companies

Top apartment companies ZRS, UDR, REMM Group, and Nicol Investment Company address staffing and operational challenges with AI innovation, ACE™ Virtual Leasing Assistant powered by LeaseHawk.
October 20, 2022
News

Leasing Hours Reduced for Companies Using Conversational AI

Apartment operators today are facing hiring challenges and potential staff burnout while also looking to create operational efficiencies that can help to solve both.

Top multifamily management companies are finding such solutions through the ACE™ Virtual Leasing Assistant powered by LeaseHawk. ACE has taken the burden off leasing professionals and call centers by adeptly handling incoming calls and online inquiries, scheduling tours and screening incoming leads.

Additionally, properties have reported that ACE’s ability to immediately answer leasing questions before a prospect reaches a call center, helps to vastly reduce costs and improves the prospect experience.

UDR Apartments

“ACE gives us the ability to not only reduce major overhead in the call center component of our business, but it also allows us to tailor engagement to carry out our own unique voice with every prospective resident interaction,” said Josh Gampp, CTO, UDR.

There was a time when UDR employed a full team of leasing professionals on a busy Saturday afternoon to handle a few dozen renter prospect tours for a single multifamily community.

By adding ACE to its team, the diversified multifamily REIT with approximately 52,600 apartment homes, has been able to increase its tour volume, conducting upwards of 40 self-guided tours per day while employing only a fraction of multi-functional office personnel at a given community.

“These findings have validated the belief that most prospective residents do not want to be ‘sold’ to, but instead prefer to self-serve on their schedules.

Today, roughly 97 percent of the UDR’s tours are self-guided.”

ZRS Management

ZRS Management is improving its lease conversions, saving their onsite staff precious work hours, and effectively communicating with prospective residents 24/7—yes, including weekends.

ZRS cites that at full occupancy it was able to close some of its leasing offices over weekends and lean on ACE to handle leasing inquiries. What does ACE do while its human counterparts were saving precious hours? It works to pre-qualify prospects by answering their leasing questions, add prospects to waitlists, schedule tours, and conversationally answer their leasing questions about the property and what it’s like to live there.

Overall, ACE handled 29 percent of all inquiries received by ZRS properties. Plus, ACE made a great impression on those prospects because out of the total number of applicants that interacted with ACE, 80 percent signed a lease.

Jeremy Brown, VP of Marketing for ZRS, said, “Saving our leasing teams countless hours by filtering the noise to provide the most qualified leads to us has been so advantageous.

This way, our leasing team can focus on what they do best – leasing! ACE has been able to keep our pipeline full of pre-qualified prospects ready to visit or virtually visit our communities.”

REMM Group

The REMM Group’s Director of Marketing, Windell Mollenido, said some of his team “don’t even realize that the AI is turned on. ACE is subsidizing the professional so that they can do their jobs better because virtual leasing assistants, take care of the tedious, repetitive work.”

He said that so many of the incoming calls his leasing office receives aren’t even related to getting a lease. Mollenido said he has 14 to 16 hours of chatbot texts and calls taken by ACE each week.

“Just telling the teams to answer every call and make a guest card from it can be counterproductive,” Mollenido said. “Doing that, you’ll burn out your salespeople.”

He said ACE has helped create the flexibility in their daily work so that his associates can be more passionate about what they do – personally serving their customers.

Nicol Investment Company

Kyle Burkett, Managing Director of Asset Management, Nicol Investment Company, says with so many job candidates seeking work-life balance, his company can leverage ACE, in part, to provide flexible scheduling, which helps to prevent burnout during these high-energy times in property management.

Burkett found success by implementing the ACE™ Virtual Leasing Assistant powered by LeaseHawk. ACE has taken a great deal of the burden off of his leasing professionals.

“We are able to increase our customer service, be more agile, and give people more time off,” said Burkett, whose leasing offices close on Sundays and still don’t miss a beat in terms of handling incoming inquiries.

“We’re closed on Sundays because we launched AI – and it’s incredibly cheaper than having to employ a full-timer during those hours and off hours,” he said. “And when we had to close our offices for COVID a while back, we could still field incoming interest.”

ACE also helps to fill in when leasing professionals are away on tours during normal business hours. “Our in-person tours take about 40 minutes, he said, “so when agents aren’t there to answer the phone, that was a missed opportunity.” But not anymore.

ACE Self-Service Features for Residents

To create more automated efficiencies, ACE’s newest AI enhancement focuses on resident work orders. ACE is now able to differentiate residents and prospects and is learning more every day about residents' work order needs. Depending on the communication channel used, ACE will text, chat, or forward a caller to the property’s online maintenance portal. This powerful feature is an additional way for properties to reduce call center expenses and fill staffing gaps by providing residents with a self-service solution.

To learn more about ACE’s cutting-edge AI and voice-automation visit leasehawk.com/ace.

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