After analysing hundreds of property management software upgrades and migrations, we discovered this.
A massive amount of new features for property managers were released into Console Cloud during the financial year of 2018-2019. With these additions, numerous agencies have been migrating their data over to our software.
“What is the most effective way to migrate our property management data?”. This was the most asked question our real estate migrations team got asked. There are five qualities that successful migrations need to have identified by our team after performing hundreds of migrations.
So regardless of whether you’re an existing customer, or migrating to us from PropertyMe, Rockend, PropertyTree, REST, GeeDee, or anywhere else, here’s the best way to prepare for the transition.
Whether you’re an existing Console customer or migrating from PropertyTree, Rockend, REST, GeeDee, PropertyMe, or any other software company, these are the best ways to prepare for a transition.
#1: Everyone should be given plenty of notice. The more, the better.
Here at Console, our teams have been able to migrate software within an hour and at times even faster. These migrations were only able to be so quick and smooth because of how the agencies handled and prepared for it. All of these agencies had one thing in common. Plenty of notice and time was given to both themselves and us for their planned transition.
Out of all these qualities, this is easily the most important of the five: More is genuinely more, give your software provider and your agency plenty of time.
In practice what this looks like
It is important to set a Migration Day, notify everyone, including your software provider, of this date and prepare with plenty of time.
Why is this important? Because no matter what type of property your agency manages, and no matter how large or small your portfolio is, the migration process will always be a bit different. Letting us know early means we can identify and find the best steps to prepare your agency for a smooth transition.
As an existing Console Customer
We thank you and appreciate you choosing to do business with us! We value every customer, no matter the size of your portfolio, at Console. This is why each and every one of you has a dedicated account manager.
So if you’re thinking of moving to Console Cloud, let your account manager know. They’re invested in helping you have the best experience possible and will work with our migrations team to make the transition as easy as possible.
Let your account manager know if you are currently thinking about moving over to the Cloud. They are 100% invested in making sure you get the best help and experience possible. Let them know, and they will work hand in hand with the migrations team to make the smoothest transition possible.
#2: Make sure your team is prepared
The second biggest tip our migrations team has for agencies looking to smoothly transition their property data is to make sure your team is brought along with you, from the start. There is not a single property manager who likes to be told out of the blue, “This is how things are done now.”
Most teams will resist change that doesn’t have them directly involved in the deciding process of making the switch even if it will bring about a positively massive change in work satisfaction and productivity.
There are more benefits to this approach besides getting your team’s approval, opinion and blessing for the new software transition. Your team will definitely be more open to any proceeding data issues that come about from the transition if they are at the forefront of the process.
Migration and software upgrade meetings. What happens there?
This is where the discussion will be held between our migrations team experts and your agency’s property management team in regards to the best and smoothest way to make the transition.
In practice, what does this prepping and process look like?
No matter what industry you’re in, the success of the transition depends heavily on if the teams’ expectations are met and all their issues and concerns are addressed, making sure they understand every process and what comes after.
Our training teams and implementation teams work together to create and implement resources in order to help agencies be trained, and briefed, of the transition process well before the migration day. By making sure that all team members are properly trained and have a full understanding of the process, you will have a high success rate for a completely smooth transition, and any questions that need to be answered will have a place they can go to be answered.
#3: Set goals!
After you have successfully got your team’s approval and they are on board, It’s time to ask the hard-hitting, big questions; What are you hoping the software migration will achieve? Is there a specific amount of time that you want to shave off of your workload each day or week through different processes (i.e. receipting).
Maybe you want to have the amount of time tenants have to spend in arrears reduced? Have your business grown by a specific margin? Look into seeing how much your rent roll is worth? All of these can be achieved through Console Cloud, and the best results come from setting your goals before migration.
Setting goals and targets for your business gives you the best bang for your buck when choosing to upgrade to Console Cloud. Being able to measure things such as productivity increases, arrear times, or general time savings/wastage, is a good value usage of Console Cloud. When it comes to deciding what you and your team wants, the sky’s the limit. So what do you want?
#4: Make sure all your data is clean
This may look like an unrealistic tip to give, and we are perfectly aware that there is no such thing as perfectly clean error-free data, but it is still something that you should strive for. Following the first tip and allowing for a good amount of time in advance allows for the tedious, but important, following step.
That’s because the fourth quality of highly effective property management data migrations is having the right property management data ready to go.
The fourth tip for effective software data migration is all about making sure the right data is identified, sorted and raring to go.
In practice, what does this look like
Don’t rush, make sure there is enough time to get all of your fundamental and necessary data to be transitioned in order. Fundamental data includes tenants details, landlords data, contact info for tradies, specific properties data and the rest.
Our talented team will be on standby and ready to help walk you through all the necessities to prepare your trust accounts for the software migration transition. This will also include everything that will, and won’t, come through the migration. For new customers, don’t worry because we welcome you aboard and show you everything you need to know in order to take advantage of the powerful trust accounting features within Console Cloud, including all the other time-saving features we’ve built for you.
What about if you are already an existing customer of Console
That’s Fantastic! Both smoothly and hiccup-free we will be dedicated to making sure that your accounts are closed out and reconciled for the transition to Console Cloud. Even after the transition, we’ll be there every step of the way showing you everything you need to know and how to get the most value out of our powerful Cloud property management software including trust accounting, productivity features and even be around to help you do your first end of month!
#5: Make sure to notify everyone of the upcoming changes (Owners, tenants, tradies and contractors)
When it comes to who should know about the software migration, it’s not just your agency’s team. It’s important to let Owners, tenants, tradies and contractors all are completely aware of the changes coming and how it will affect them. The transition will be ridiculously easier if you communicate with all parties involved and make sure all their questions, worries and issues answered.
When it comes to transitioning over to Console Cloud a few processes involving communicating with your contacts will be a bit different. For example, landlords, via the Owner Portal within Console Cloud will have access to their monthly statements. Tenants may be receiving communications from you differently, which does depend on which software was used previously since some use a similar process. And to make sure they are correctly adding/logging work orders (if that is within your business’ workflow) by keeping them in the know.
In short, preparing your stakeholders for change means they are far more likely to embrace it, and, heaven forbid, far more likely to forgive an error. That limits the risk of losing business, and that’s good for, well, pretty much everyone.
Stakeholders are definitely much more likely to accept and, heaven forbid, not have as many issues with any changes if they are kept in the know. Communication and interpersonal issues are a huge risk for losing business, so this simple tip is good for all parties involved.
In practice, what does this look like?
This could be as easy as sending an email, SMS, or letter to your tenants. But you could also update your email signature, or make an announcement via your website or social media channels. The important thing is to meet your contacts where they want to be met: contact them via the channel you know they’re most likely to receive your message.
There are many ways you can communicate to others that there is a software migration happening. Whether it’s by text, email, a letter, updated email signature or a friendly announcement via personal websites or social media. The main thing is that everyone involved is contacted via how they want to be contacted. Think about what method will be the easiest for the announcement to be seen.
And that’s everything: simple right? You’re ready to migrate/transition and the future is bright
Want to get started? You can book a demo and see for yourself what Console Cloud can do for your business. Or if you want to see what’s happening at Console check out our events page. You can also learn even more about our product and why you should choose Console Cloud here. Finally, learn more about our arrears, lease renewal workflows, permissions and rent roll insights, or how other agencies are using our new and power Console App.
Console New Zealand
Console are providers of trust accounting software and end-to-end property management solutions, for property managers and agents in Australia and New Zealand.