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Leading PropTech Company, Spike, Recognised as Sunday Times Best Place to Work

Spike has been named as one of The Sunday Times Best Places to Work in 2023. The prestigious award, voted by staff, recognises organisations with the highest employee engagement and wellbeing levels.


Based in Bournemouth and employing 32 staff, the company was recognised in the small organisation category for companies with 10-47 employees, achieving an overall engagement score of 87%, 11% higher than the industry average. Spike also scored highly across the key categories for employee engagement and workplace happiness including reward and recognition, instilling pride, sharing information, employee wellbeing, and job satisfaction.


Commenting on the award Jeremy Heath-Smith, CEO of Spike, said: “I am extremely proud that Spike has been recognised as a Sunday Times Best Places to Work. We are committed to providing a healthy work-life balance for employees, and have developed a strong, collaborative team culture. We’ve gone from strength to strength over the last few years and have an exciting future ahead of us, which is testament to all the hard work and dedication the entire team puts in.”

Spike is the leading property management and tenant engagement software provider, with its solutions being used daily in more than 200 buildings across the UK.


Spike Lettings, its tenancy management solution, allows prospective tenants to easily browse and find available apartments online, make an initial enquiry, and progress through the reservation stage, all the way through to moving in. Whilst its tenant engagement portal, Spike Living, provides tenants with one simple, intuitive app, allowing them to communicate with building management and with each other – making life easier in a multitude of ways. From booking onsite amenities and services to reporting maintenance issues, the portal makes routine communication quick and easy.


The Sunday Times Best Places to Work recognises and celebrates the best employers in the UK based on feedback from employees and an independent assessment of workplace culture, leadership, and employee engagement and wellbeing.


For more information about Best Places to Work visit:

https://www.thetimes.co.uk/static/best-places-to-work-2023/

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Insight

Tech-Enabled Community Living – Not Just Fiction

For viewers of the multi-award-winning TV series Succession, its ‘Living+’ episode aired a few weeks ago, showcasing a very familiar concept that was embraced by investors amidst a whirlwind of excitement.


Living+ was presented as a luxury living community; a planned residential project described as bringing “the cruise-ship experience to dry land.” A real estate venture aimed at senior citizens promising a “safe, secure community enriched with integrated interactions with the cherished family of Waystar’s movie and TV characters.” All brought together by a fully integrated mobile app, allowing residents to enjoy and consume everything that is on offer both within and outside the development.


For outsiders, this concept may seem lightyears ahead, however, for many within the real estate sector, this tech-enabled community living is already here.


The senior living sector has started to embrace technology solutions to enhance the experience of its residents, with forward-thinking retirement operators already rolling out our Spike Living portal. We see Living+ however, as more akin to the BTR sector. BTR accounted for a record share of volume in Q1 2023, according to property consultants Lambert Smith Hampton’s latest UK Investment Transactions (UKIT) report.

Living+ looks to capture and create a sense of community amongst residents, with technology playing an integral part, something that BTR has achieved successfully already, thanks to resident engagement portals like Spike Living.


By helping residents to feel better connected to where they live, this increases the likelihood that they will feel more attached and responsible to their local community. Participation in social and community life not only has benefits in retaining residents, research by Apartment Life found that the more friends a resident has within their building, the more likely they are to renew their tenancy. Similarly, Kingfisher’s The GoodHome Report found that 73% of people who are happy with their home are also happy in general, with a happy home accounting for 15% of our overall happiness.


Whilst Living+ may have been presented as the future, residents can experience the benefits of tech-enabled community living now.

Spike Living facilitates the building of communities, allowing people to connect with one another and bond over similar interests, with access to property managers at a tap of a button.


Learn how our solutions could work for you. Request a one-to-one demo below!

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5 Ways to Support Residents With Their Mental Health

This week is Mental Health Awareness Week (15th – 21st May), with this year’s theme being anxiety.


We all feel anxious from time to time. Anxiety is a natural response to the uncertain world around us. With the current cost-of-living crisis, more than a third of adults are feeling anxious about their financial situations. Furthermore, in a recent mental health survey that was carried out around stress and anxiety over personal finances, six in ten adults said they felt so anxious that it stopped them from doing the things they want to do.


It’s therefore vitally important that building operators and property managers are able to recognise the signs of anxiety, and are able to provide appropriate support when needed. Warning signs could include a change in a residents’ behaviour, late payments, or a change in appearance, indicating that someone may possibly be vulnerable or going through a difficult time.

 

Our 2023 charity partner, Dorset Mind, has provided a ‘5 Ways to Wellbeing’ framework, as a way to encourage a healthier lifestyle. This consists of ‘connect‘, ‘get active‘, ‘take notice‘, ‘learn‘ and ‘give‘. This simple, tried and tested framework can offer many opportunities for residents to take their minds away from stressful situations that are out of their control and provide focus on what they can do.


Here are 5 tips on what property managers can be doing to help support residents, inspired by the ‘5 Ways to Wellbeing’ framework:

1.) Take notice – Communicate with residents to ensure they are aware that support is available should they need it

Anxiety can lead us to believe that we are alone in our personal struggles, and often, residents may feel unsure how to ask for help. By letting them know that support is available, they can feel reassured that they do not need to suffer alone.

 

For instance, resident portals such as Spike Living, can provide an easy and quick way for residents to ask for help. Rather than needing to leave the comfort and security of their home, they can directly message their property manager who can then assess and provide the appropriate support. Some of our clients have even added a ‘HELP’ button to their portal to enable residents to alert staff if they need help urgently.

2.) Connect and Give – Create community forums and support groups

Across our client base, we’ve seen many online forums created, from encouraging gratitude and positivity to general social clubs, enabling residents to build real-life support networks right on their doorsteps. Having dedicated community forums and support groups can give residents a ‘safe space’ to discuss their worries, and seek guidance. As the saying goes, ‘a problem shared is a problem solved’.

 

Participation in social and community life has attracted a lot of attention in the field of wellbeing research. Individuals who report a greater interest in helping others are more likely to rate themselves as happy.


By utilising a resident engagement portal, such as Spike Living, property managers can provide a secure and safe place online that is only accessible by genuine residents, ensuring that residents are not at risk from scammers and strangers.


Property Managers can also use the Spike Living portal to provide dedicated wellness resources to residents such as how to sleep with anxiety, managing emotional wellbeing as well as mindfulness techniques.

3.) Connect – Encourage residents to take part in community events

Whether it’s a coffee and chat morning, or in-person social networking, providing residents with opportunities to combat loneliness and isolation can bring residents together in difficult times.


When anxiety can often make residents feel lonely, opportunities to make friends can make tough times easier to manage.


Download our 2023 Community Engagement Guide for resident event inspiration!

4.) Learn – Encourage residents to try something new

Arts and crafts sessions, mixology workshops and more. Inspiring residents to take up a new skill or a hobby is a great way to build self-esteem and encourage more social interaction.


Opportunities to engage in educational activities can particularly help to relieve anxiety, and the practice of setting goals, has been strongly associated with higher levels of wellbeing.


Spread awareness of these events and workshops via the Spike Living portal to increase attendance!

5.) Be active – Get residents involved in fitness and wellness classes

According to Mind UK, a number of studies reveal how physical exercise can help relieve anxiety and improve mental health, not to mention lifting moods, and improving sleep. As well as being a great way to connect with others.

 

Fitness doesn’t need to be strenuous: yoga and meditation classes can be a great way to introduce residents to a healthier lifestyle. One of our clients introduced ‘Meditate Mondays’, which to date has been attended by over 4,000 residents.

 

By utilising Spike Living, residents can view and book available fitness classes within a few taps, all from the comfort and convenience of their homes.

SUMMARY

It’s becoming increasingly important to encourage open discussions, helping to remove the stigma surrounding mental health.


By ensuring that residents feel supported and cared for in their communities during difficult times, this not only dramatically enhances the resident experience, which is arguably one of the most important elements of any property offering, but also increases the likelihood that they will renew their tenancy.


For more information and ideas on how to support residents, see Dorset Mind’s helpful resources and Anxiety UK

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A Look Back on our Charity Initiatives – January to April 2023

At the start of this year, Spike selected Dorset Mind as its Charity of the Year for 2023. 

 

Based in Bournemouth, Dorset Mind educates, challenges mental health stigma and inequality; and encourages recovery by empowering people to develop resilience. Their 1-2-1 and group support includes befriending, counselling, groups, and mentoring for adults and young people. Their training team delivers educational wellbeing for workplaces including the official Mental Health First Aid (MHFA). They also have numerous volunteering opportunities across the charity. 

 

Connecting communities and bringing people together is at the heart of what we do here at Spike. This year, as a company, we committed to taking part in a number of fundraising events and volunteering initiatives to enable Dorset Mind to continue to raise awareness and provide support for mental health in our communities, whilst at the same time organising a variety of activities aimed towards keeping our staff mentally healthy. 

 

Now, four months later, we’re proud to reflect back on our charity initiatives which have not only brought us a huge sense of accomplishment but also closer as a company, whilst growing our relationship with our neighbours and friends at Dorset Mind.

Beach Clean Up – March 2023

Our beach clean-up was our first organised charity activity, and many of our staff volunteered their time to pick up litter on Bournemouth beach. We followed Dorset Mind’s ‘5 Ways to Wellbeing‘ framework, developed by the New Economics Foundation, which addresses core elements such as connection, staying active, taking notice of our surroundings, trying something new, and giving back. 

 

There are many wellbeing benefits to staff beach clean ups, including enabling staff to give back to their local community, building connections with one another whilst simultaneously enjoying the outdoors, and staying active. It was a morning that was enjoyed by all, and our staff returned to the office with the feeling of accomplishment and having had a great opportunity to spend time with the wider team.

Bournemouth Bay Run – April 2023

The Bournemouth Bay Run 2023 was our first fundraising initiative, and five members of the team took on the challenge! This year, #TeamSpike consisted of Nick, Vicky, and Josh tackling the half marathon, whilst Jonny took on the 10km route, and Sriya the 5km route. Each runner committed themselves to weeks of arduous training, never giving up despite injuries, illnesses, and exhaustion.

Donning neon orange, inspired by the Bournemouth Bay Run’s 40th anniversary 80’s theme, the team all beat their personal targets and raised a considerable amount of money for Dorset Mind. Our office was proud to support and cheer on our team in orange as they crossed the finishing line! We even caught our team in the Bournemouth Echo!

We were initially hoping to raise £500, but through the generosity and kindness of our community, friends, and family, we exceeded our target and raised over £2,500! What’s more, our fundraising page was named one of the most successful JustGiving pages of the month, a huge achievement as our first official fundraising initiative! 

 

Thank you so much to everyone who supported and donated to our fundraiser! Your generosity will be going towards saving the lives of children and adults suffering from mental health in our local communities, ensuring they receive the support and guidance they need from Dorset Mind.

What Have We Planned for Q2?

After the success of our first quarter initiatives, we’re excited to bring the same energy and focus into Q2, with Team Spike taking on the Dragon Boat Race at the Sherbourne Castle Country Fair on the 29th May 2023, as well as our second beach clean-up with the support of Dorset Mind and local volunteers on the 5th June for World Environment Day!

 

Alongside this, we’re excited to be partnering up with Dorset Mind to write monthly blogs and content directed at helping those in the real estate sector to support their staff and residents, relating to key dates such as Mental Health Awareness Week focusing on anxiety, World Meditation Day, Men’s Health Week and more! 

 

You can learn more about Dorset Mind and find ways to support the work they are doing here.

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Spike are #EmbracingEquity this International Women’s Day 2023 

“No country can ever truly flourish if it stifles the potential of it’s women, and deprives itself of the contribution of half it’s citizens.” – Michelle Obama

It’s International Women’s Day 2023, and with this year’s theme being #EmbraceEquity, tying in with the UN Women’s theme of “DigitALL: innovation and technology for women”, we’re celebrating and spotlighting all our Spike women!


IWD 2023’s call to ‘embrace equity’ suggests an active willingness to accept, adopt and support gender equity across wellbeing, employment and technology. Following this theme, the United Nations Observance of IWD recognises and celebrates the women and girls who are championing the advancement of transformative technology.


According to the UN, bringing women and other marginalised groups into technology results in more creative solutions, and has greater potential for innovations that meet women’s needs and promote gender equality. According to Tech Nation, nearly three million people, or 9% of the UK workforce are employed in the UK tech industry. But women only make up 26% of the tech workforce. Many are driven out of the industry through burnout, gender biases, toxic aspects of “bro-culture” and a lack of work-life balance. A recent PwC study also indicates only 3% of women say a career in technology is their first-choice career.


So, what have we done to embrace equity at Spike? 

  • We’re encouraging transparent communication and encouraging our female team to voice their thoughts, and ensuring we always get their perspective, including them in high level discussions or 1-to-1s.
  • We’re accommodating those who have family commitments, ensuring there is no fear of penalisation, through enabling flexible working patterns for those who need it, and staying open-minded and educated when it comes to female health.
  • Encouraging retention and recruitment, giving equal opportunities to women from a variety of backgrounds, encouraging them to bring their own flair to the team.
  • We’re actively creating social opportunities through office socials, where both men and women have been given equal opportunities to make suggestions and play active roles.
  • We’re offering mentorship and support in every role.
  • We’re encouraging all staff to express their creativity through imputing into enhancing the workspace and in celebrating special events.
  • Continuously learning and understanding the best ways to support the needs of women in our team.

Summary

We hope to see more inclusivity within the technology industry, and we encourage everyone to consider gender equity within their workplace. As a company who value community, we endeavour to promote equality and put measures in place to enable women to thrive and develop within the sector alongside their male counterparts.


Thank you to all of our incredible women at Spike who add so much to the team as a whole – bringing their drive, flair, creativity, and much more!


Keep an eye out for our #IWD Spotlights across on our social media channels where we will be showcasing and celebrating our female team!

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Creating Sustainable Communities – How to Inspire Tenants to Take Action

Sustainability issues are a growing concern across all age groups. Among younger generations in particular, this concern is playing an increasingly important role when it comes to purchasing decisions.


Research reveals that Generation Z (Gen Z) place high importance on brands that reflect their values, with up to 72% willing to spend more on goods and services produced in a sustainable way. The same applies to Millennials who are just as eco-conscious, with 75% at the point of changing their buying habits to favour environmentally friendly products.


There is also emerging evidence that the priority placed on sustainability by Gen Z extends to accommodation decisions. Recent research into what Gen Z wants from their living environment found that “80% of Gen Zs said it was important that their home has sustainability credentials when considering a new place to live.”


With 25–34-year-olds making up 62% of all tenants in Build-to-Rent, there is an opportunity for operators to harness this collective concern to create more sustainable communities.

Barriers to Change

Our recent research report entitled Changing Behaviours investigated the barriers to change and identified the main reasons why tenants did not make the effort of becoming sustainable, from feelings of powerlessness, social norms and comparisons to mistrust.

Individuals often feel powerless to take action that can make a difference in mitigating an issue as serious as climate change, and this impacts their behaviour. Both our research and our discussions with tenants highlighted that in many cases, individuals believe that action at an individual level is unlikely to make a difference, especially when others around them aren’t doing the ‘right’ thing.


Furthermore, as humans, we frequently compare ourselves with others. This includes a comparison of our actions with those of others to determine the “correct” behaviour when it comes to the environment. If individuals believe that those around them are not engaging in pro-environmental behaviour, then they themselves are less likely to engage in pro-environmental behaviour. The opposite is also true – individuals will also change their behaviour to “match” others in a positive way, in order to avoid the disapproval of their peers – for example, altering energy consumption to replicate the reported usage of their neighbours.


Finally, if pro-environmental behaviour change programmes are perceived as lacking authenticity or ineffective, then individuals are unlikely to participate. Our discussions with tenants highlighted repeatedly that the way their accommodation provider approaches recycling, for instance, influences the level of trust that they have in their accommodation provider when it comes to wider sustainability initiatives. If recycling programmes are perceived as being tokenistic or ineffective, then tenants are likely to have reduced trust and reduced motivation to engage in pro-environmental behaviours.

The Role Technology Plays in Inspiring Tenants 

Technology such as tenant engagement portals not only provide tenants with a centralised platform to access information about their building and communicate with management, but also provide an opportunity for tenants to engage with their community. By helping tenants to feel better connected to where they live, this increases the likelihood that they will feel more attached and responsible to their local community, and ultimately more likely to behave in a way that benefits the collective good.


Tenant engagement portals also offer a central place where operators can easily share information and advice about recycling, energy and water conservation, and sustainable transportation options, helping to better inform tenants. We’ve seen clients share tips on reducing food waste and provide guides on how to create your own compost bins. By providing easy access to this information, tenants become more informed and inspired to take action.


Tenant portals, like Spike Living, can connect tenants with other like-minded neighbours via various online clubs and forums. By creating a place where tenants can share their own useful tips, organise their own community events such as neighbourhood clean-ups or volunteer days, this helps to instil a sense of togetherness and collective focus.


Furthermore, operators can also use this as an opportunity to report on their own impact and the initiatives they are undertaking, such as switching to environmentally friendly cleaning products, replacing communal lights to use energy efficient light bulbs, as well as openly responding to feedback from tenants.


Additionally, Spike Global has worked with Utopi to enable tenants to view their own energy usage and track their progress towards reducing their consumption in the Spike Living portal. While a tenant might look at their smart meter and not grasp what a kilowatt-hour is, showing they are using more energy than their neighbours will make them instantly better informed. Examples include the amount of energy used compared with others living in a similar-sized apartment, the amount of carbon used, or how much energy is saved by turning the heating down by one click.


Operators are also able to use this data to set targets for reduction in consumption and spot outliers and poor performing tenants, allowing them to offer advice and support, as well as highlight potential maintenance issues.

Working to change the behaviour of tenants can reap significant rewards. For example, strategies that tap into the natural human instinct to conform to social norms – such as providing feedback on consumption and comparison with others – can result in behaviour changes that reduce carbon emissions in the region of 7%-35%. And that’s just according to some more conservative estimates!

Summary

Tenant engagement portals can be a powerful tool for inspiring sustainable behaviour among tenants. By providing information and education, encouraging competition and collaboration, and offering greater transparency, this can create a more environmentally conscious community.


It’s easy to imagine a not-too-distant future where a property’s environmental credentials and the property operator’s ethos around sustainability may be the deciding factor for sustainability-savvy prospective tenants.


Want to learn more? Then download our Changing Behaviours report below.

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The Role Tenant Engagement Plays Within BTR Developments 

Tenants who are engaged with their local community are often happier than those who are not, so connecting tenants to one another and allowing them to form meaningful relationships with their local community has now become a necessity rather than just a luxury. 

It’s also far more cost-effective to retain happy tenants. Average turnover costsfor an apartment within the industry is around £1,200, however this number can often be significantly higher, depending on a wide variety of factors specific to the property.  


Although turnover to some degree is inevitable, in many instances, developments lose tenants because the living experience falls short of their expectations. Property managers should be striving to encourage tenants to consider the entire building as their home instead of limiting the idea to just their apartment. 


While it’s relatively easy to provide trendy amenities, great designs, and flashy décor, what really attracts tenants to a building, and keeps them staying year after year, is creating a sense of community and belonging that supports their wellbeing.  

Why Engage With the Community?

When a new tenant moves into a building, they may be unfamiliar with the surrounding area. Connecting them with others in the building, local shops and services, or details that can bring convenience to their lives is a great way of ensuring tenants feel engaged from the offset. Many of our clients team up with the local businesses to offer exclusive discounts to their tenants on anything from cleaning services, dog walkers to local restaurants.


Holding regular social events is also an important way in allowing friendships between tenants to blossom – whether that’s online or in person. Research by Apartment Life found that the more friends a tenant has within their building, the more likely they are to renew their tenancy. Without any friends living in their community, tenants only have a 29% chance of renewing. That number jumps to 38% if they have 1-3 friends, and if they have 7 or more friends, there’s a 47% likelihood that they’ll renew. Facilitating safe and easy communication among members of the community allows people to get to know each other more easily.  

The Power of Community

Investing in developing a community not only enhances the tenant experience – it can also lead to better outcomes. Tenants are more likely to behave in a way that benefits the collective good if they feel an attachment to the people, place and community in which they live. 


Although the link between a sense of community and pro-environment behaviours is an under-researched area, there is evidence that supports these observations. Fostering a sense of community and attachment to a place and to others increases the effectiveness of behaviour change campaigns in relation to both energy saving and recycling, for example.  


This is because when individuals feel that they belong to a community or want to fit in to that community, and their identity is partly attached to it, they are more likely to act in a way that benefits the collective good. 

The Role Technology Can Play in Engaging Tenants

Tenant engagement portals such as Spike Living can help to foster a sense of community and attachment, as well as empower tenants by providing relevant, relatable information. Research highlights that the presentation of data in terms of direct energy units such as kWh or in terms of CO2 emissions is difficult for users to understand. 


However, a tenant engagement portal that can present usage information in relation to others, demonstrate impact and employ gamification techniques to motivate tenants is more effective at creating engagement and driving change. Whilst a tenant might look at their smart meter and not grasp what a kilowatt-hour is, showing that they are using more energy than their neighbours will make them instantly better informed. Examples include the amount of energy used compared with others living in a similar sized apartment in the building, the amount of carbon used in a 10-minute shower, or how much energy is saved by turning the heating down by one click.  


Furthermore, having the ability to send out personalised, weather-appropriate tips to help tenants reduce consumption, as well as keeping the community engaged with useful information, can make cutting their carbon footprint seem like a positive achievement rather than an enforced misery. This mixture of education and competition creates a feedback loop of positive reinforcement that will keep the issue front of mind. 


At the end of last year, Spike Global, ASK4 and Utopi released Changing Behaviours, a joint research report highlighting how working to change the behaviour of tenants can reap significant rewards. For example, strategies that tap into the natural human instinct to conform to social norms – such as providing feedback on consumption and comparison with others – can result in behaviour changes that reduce carbon emissions in the region of 7%-35%. And that’s just according to some more conservative estimates. 


The report also explores and investigates the reasons why tenants, despite good intentions, behave in ways that are often at odds with these values. The reasons why tenants often fail to follow up on values with concrete actions are many and varied – ranging from feeling powerless to making a difference (especially when others around them are not doing the ‘right’ thing), a lack of comfort, a mistrust that their accommodation provider is genuine and authentic in their sustainability efforts. A lack of information on personal consumption in comparison to others also plays a crucial role. 

Summary

As the BTR sector continues to grow at pace, tenant engagement will play an increasingly important role in retaining tenants as well as driving down carbon emissions.   


You can learn more about the role that community can play in achieve net zero and other sustainability targets by downloading our Changing Behaviours Report below.

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Spike Global Selects Dorset Mind as its Charity of the Year for 2023

Spike Global is proud to select Dorset Mind as its Charity of the Year for 2023. 


Mental health affects so many people from all walks of life; our friends, families, colleagues and neighbours. According to Mind, 1 in 4 people will experience a mental health problem of some kind each year in England. With 1 in 6 reporting experiencing a common mental health problems (such as anxiety and depression) in any given week.


Whilst many of us are fortunate to have a support network, not everyone is so lucky, and mental health can often go untreated and undetected.


Based in Bournemouth, Dorset Mind educates, challenges mental health stigma and inequality; and encourages recovery by empowering people to develop resilience. Their 1-2-1 and group support includes befriending, counselling, groups, and mentoring for adults and young people. Their training team delivers educational wellbeing for workplaces including the official Mental Health First Aid (MHFA). There are also volunteer opportunities across the charity.

Connecting communities and bringing people together is at the heart of what we do here at Spike Global. This year, as a company, we are committing to taking part in a number of fundraising events and charity initiatives to enable Dorset Mind to continue to raise awareness and provide support for mental health in our communities.


Keep an eye out for our collaborative blogs with helpful advice on how property managers can raise mental health awareness in their communities, updates on the various challenges we will be undertaking as a company, and the positive impact that Dorset Mind is having.


You can learn more about Dorset Mind and find ways to support the work they are doing here.

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How Operators Can Help Residents Tackle ‘Blue Monday’ 

Combine post-Christmas blues with the rising cost of living, and you have a recipe for a rather dismal January!


Taking inspiration from our clients, we’ve come up with some ideas that can be used to encourage a not-so-blue January and bring more positivity into your developments.

1. Establish Online Wellness Clubs and Forums

Across our client base, we’ve seen online meditation clubs, forums encouraging gratitude and positivity, to general social clubs, enabling residents to build real-life support networks right on their doorsteps. What’s more, research by Apartment Life found that the more friends a resident has within their building, the more likely they are to renew their tenancy.


By utilising our award-winning resident engagement portal, Spike Living, property managers can provide a secure and safe place online that is only accessible by genuine residents, ensuring that residents are not at risk from scammers and strangers. 

2. Digitally Bookable Fitness Classes 

According to Mind UK, there are numerous studies that reveal how physical exercise can improve mental health, from lifting moods, to improving sleep and a great way to connect with others. It’s no surprise that fitness classes were the most popular events to take place across our client developments last year! 


By utilising Spike Living, residents can view and book available fitness classes within a few taps, all from the comfort and convenience of their homes. Spike Living also allows events and fitness classes to be ticketed and chargeable, providing an additional revenue stream for property managers.

3. Hold Wellness Events and Workshops

Yoga and meditation workshops became the norm during the pandemic and have continued to grow in popularity ever since. One of our clients introduced ‘Meditate Mondays’, which had an attendance of over 1,000 residents in 2022 – yoga classes in total across our client base were attended by over 6,000 residents in the same year!


To combat loneliness and isolation, property managers could hold coffee mornings, Mindfulness Mondays, or provide in-person social networking opportunities to bring residents together.


Spread awareness of these events and workshops via our Spike Living portal to increase attendance!

4. Virtual or In-Person Mental Health Sessions 

Often having someone to talk to in a professional setting can make it easier to discuss anxieties or concerns. In some of our client developments, on site counselling sessions were offered for free or at a discounted rate, and all bookable via the Spike Living portal


Partner with local or established psychologists to connect residents to licenced professionals, whether via virtual consultations or in a dedicated on-site room.


We also worked with clients to implement a dedicated area within their Spike Living portal to provide residents with quick and easy access to a wide range of content from advice around mindfulness, managing emotional wellbeing, as well as providing a simple way for residents to ask for help, alerting on-site teams of anxiety attacks or residents needing immediate help.

5. Amenities Dedicated to Mental Wellness

Provide residents with a dedicated area within their building, such as meditation rooms or wellness studios, giving residents the opportunity to get away from everyday stresses and find peace within their own buildings.


To raise awareness and encourage use of these dedicated rooms, property management regularly promoted availability of these amenities on the Spike Living portal.


Summary

Turn January from a sombre period to a month of new beginnings and opportunities, ensuring that residents feel supported and cared for. With resident experience arguably the most important element of any property offering, and a key factor when it comes to retaining residents, many property managers are now looking at how to provide additional value to ensure their developments stand out within an increasingly competitive rental market.

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4 Ways to Enhance Communication Within Your Building

Effective and transparent communication is an essential component in any successful relationship, and when it comes to property management, it’s no different. Having an easy way to communicate with residents ensures you are keeping them engaged and increasing the likelihood that they will renew their tenancy.


With this in mind, here’s four ways to enhance communication within your building.

1) Clubs and Forums

One of the easiest ways to ensure resident satisfaction and reduce resident turnover in your development is to provide opportunities for residents to engage by connecting them to their neighbours. Unlike traditional social media, Spike Living can only be accessed by residents, ensuring that they are talking with genuine residents in their building, without being at risk from scammers and strangers. 


Research by Apartment Life found that the more friends a resident has within their building, the more likely they are to renew their tenancy. Without any friends living in their community, residents only have a 29% chance of renewing. That number jumps to 38% if they have 1-3 friends, and if they have 7 or more friends, there’s a 47% likelihood that they’ll renew.


The Clubs feature in Spike Living gives residents the opportunity to meet others within their building who share similar interests. From book clubs, to gaming clubs or even cultural clubs, residents can find a sense of belonging – often leading to longer tenancies. Through Forums, residents are able to engage in community discussions, share recommendations and further promote a sense of community within the building.

 2) Events

A great way to encourage in-person communication in buildings is through organising events. Spike Living enables both staff and residents to organise their own events to encourage gatherings and social interaction between each other.


From icebreakers for university students to Christmas parties, organising events can bring residents together and further boost resident engagement, helping residents to feel truly part of the community.


Spike Living also allows events to be ticketed and chargeable, allowing staff to easily understand what events are getting the most engagement, and how many residents to expect, as well as providing an opportunity to raise additional revenue.

3) Staff Communication

According to NMHC and Kinglsey’s 2020 Apartment Resident Preferences Report, 31% of residents who do not choose to renew their tenancy are seeking better apartment management. 


Communication with residents can be enhanced through a variety of features within the Spike Living portal. From push notifications informing residents about important maintenance and safety announcements to enabling residents to directly message the concierge or reception staff, encouraging faster responses.


By offering residents a mobile portal, you are providing them with a central place to communicate with you. Rather than being constantly bombarded with phone calls or emails,  you can simply review and respond to all queries that have come through via the portal.

4) Maintenance Communication

Having an easy way to report issues was seen as a key contributor to resident satisfaction, as referenced in almost 1 in every 5 reviews according to HomeViews 2021 Build to Rent report.


One of the most time-consuming parts of a property manager’s job is the handling of maintenance issues, with minor issues turning into major ones if they aren’t dealt with quickly and efficiently. Without an easy and simple way for residents to report maintenance issues, they can often go unreported.


Resident portals like Spike Living speed up the communication in these instances and allow residents to quickly provide your maintenance staff with a clear picture of the task ahead, with residents even able to attach photos of the issue so maintenance staff can diagnose the fault ahead of time, increasing the likelihood of fixing the issue in their first visit.

Summary

As competition within the rental sector increases, communication and customer service will play an ever-important role. Developments that do not offer an easy way for residents to easily communicate with staff and each other run the risk of falling behind. Spike Living makes communication within developments much easier and more efficient than ever, ultimately improving resident satisfaction and reducing turnover.


Want to learn how our award-winning Spike Living resident engagement portal can enhance communication and resident satisfaction in your property? Request a one-to-one demo below!