Society Management App: Nearly Everything you need to know
What is a Society Management App?
An apartment or a society management app takes care of the needs of the housing society with features and functions that help simplify the communication, coordination and decision making while reducing manual effort for the society management committee and their members.
The association or committee represents the interests of the residents of a specific urban or suburban locality. The management committee of any housing society or apartment society ensures that the residents of their society co-exist in harmony. There are systems and processes put in place to help manage residents grievances, daily activities and also the financial running of the society. A good society management app or software will enhance communication and improve relationships amongst residents eventually leading to better living conditions.
Relevance of Society or Apartment Management App
Inorder to understand the relevance of a society or apartment management app, it is important to understand consumer behaviour. Do you know how many people have smartphones worldwide? The number of smartphone users worldwide has surpassed three billion. It is forecasted to grow by several hundred million in the next few years. China, India, and the United States are the countries with the highest number of smartphone users, with each country easily surpassing the 100 million user mark.
Below is a graph on the number of smartphone users from 2016 to 2021
The need for a society management app or apartment management app has become more important than ever now, considering two factors.
- Speed of Digitisation
- Current Covid Scenario
Speed of Digitisation: We are at a time where we don’t even think of this ‘age’ as the digital age. Digitisation has become an integral part of people's life similar to just breathing. We reach out to our cell phones to order food, groceries, furniture, interact with neighbors, book movie tickets, flight tickets, pay fees online and more. The rate at which digital has transformed, getting a society or apartment management app is a necessity than a luxury.
‘’Zoom video conferencing has recently increased its call volume from 10 million per day to 200 million per day in the 4 months from December 2019 to March 2020.’’
Current Covid Scenario: Covid-19 is the biggest driver of digital transformation yet. A new survey done by Mckinsey shows how Covid has speeded the digital adoption and most of these changes are here to stay. During the pandemic, consumers have moved dramatically toward online channels, and companies and industries have responded in turn. This means technology will remain part and parcel of our life, business and activities even after Covid is gone.
"Meeting society members for monthly or annual general meetings have all gone digital with video conferencing tools. We no longer have physical meetings because some of our committee members are older than 60 years and we do not want to risk due to the outbreak of Covid-19"
Vinay, Secretary of Kushali Apartments
Issues Residents Association face
Managing Maintenance Charges:
In gated communities, residents pay a fixed amount every month that is used for the upkeep of the common areas in a housing society. Collection of maintenance charges in resident associations or apartments lacks a proper system as of now. Some residents pay maintenance fees by cash, some by bank transfer and some give a cheque. It becomes the responsibility of the committee to look into all these payments and manage the amount received, and the ones that are pending.
Lack of proper software to track payments:
Committee members still resort to excel sheets to manage and track the payment of the residents. Excel sheets can get cumbersome and take a lot of time to input data. It also depends on the savviness of the committee member and how good they are with excel. Then comes the part of generating payment receipts and giving it to the residents who made the payment. And when residents relay the payment of the maintenance charges, the association has to send manual reminders to the residents so they will pay. The current system is cumbersome and unprofessional.
Complaints and Feedback:
Every resident association or society will receive complaints and feedback from their residents. It generally comes in an informal manner such as chat messages and over time gets difficult to track. It also leads to misunderstanding when one of the complaints is picked up and the other is not, simply because you have lost track of it. Complaints and feedback need to have a separate section where committee members can take a look and see what has to be implemented or respond to the residents with the logic behind certain decisions. This is unfortunately not possible with the current system followed by residents which is chat.
Communication with Residents:
Managing a resident association is like managing an office. You are the manager and they are the team members. Sending information, keeping track of what is sent and who responded to it, etc is difficult to track and manage by the committee members when they rely on chat apps like WhatsApp. Because emails are not being checked often and SMS is hardly used these days, it is even more challenging to reach the residents instantly other than chat apps like WhatsApp. But WhatsApp is so noisy with so many other messages that residents lose track or read your message very late.
Disputes over Policies:
Every time a policy is made, there will be disputes amongst residents. It is difficult to get a common view on every decision made. Issues faced by the committee is that they don't have a facility to run a poll or feedback before formulating policies so everyone can be on the same page. This leads to delay in finalising policies and further delays in implementing working systems in society.
Never-ending Paper Work:
Society and resident apartments spend a lot of time and money in creating documents and then printing them. Circulars, notices etc that are printed are not only time consuming to create but also not environmentally friendly.Then comes the tracking of these documents and no proof or trail of who it is given to and when. Notice boards may not be checked by all the residents either.
Benefits of the Society / Apartment Management App
Getting a society management software or an apartment management app has plenty of benefits. It not only simplifies your day-to-day operational work, but also helps in bringing your residents closer. A good society management app or software helps in the following way.
If societies and apartment communities rely on chat apps like whatsapp, it is really important for you to know the Pros And Cons Of Using Chat To Manage Your Residents Association.
Chat is cumbersome, not user friendly for a residential apartment needs and is best used for informal communication. A good society or apartment management app streamiles communication by providing better structure in not only sharing information with residents, but also in receiving responses from them.
Ability to track information with ease
The biggest problem with communication through chat is the difficulty in tracking messages that were sent or received days ago. Emails are passe and people hardly check sms these days, unless it is an OTP verification.
A society management app or app provides sections for different messages, be it an alert, a regular post, an event, a calendar or more. This helps residents to navigate to the information they want access to, easily.
Payment Collection and Management
One of the key functions of a resident management software or app is to allow collection of payments without much hassle. Building apartments have maintenance charges that have to be paid by residents on a monthly basis. They also will have one off payments such as a repair that the residents contribute to for the need of the building.
A resident or apartment management app not only allows payment collection, but also helps in tracking late payments, setting due dates, creating receipts and more. Management committee of the apartment will be able to see.
When there are a group of 10 people and more, difference in opinion is expected. Not all decisions will be acceptable for everyone in the apartment complex. There will always be some naysayers who will question every decision the committee takes with most peoples consensus.
A good society or apartment app will provide the facility to keep communication under control by switching comments on or off in any post or message. It also provides multiple admin level access to the committee members can distribute work evenly and even moderate messages in the app.
We are in a world of instant gratification. People do not have patience or time to go through an elaborate process or create reports that requires a lot of manual work. That is why technology comes to rescue. Creating an invoice for example - imagine you set a due date and the software or app takes care of the rest, From reminding on the dues to getting payment collected to sending alerts when the payment isn’t paid. Or, sending an instant payment receipt upon receiving payments. These kinds of features are available in a resident or society management app / software.
A society management app brings people closer due to technology. Creating an event in your apartment and getting your residents to confirm how many will attend is one. Having track of the number of participants helps in planning of the event successfully. Sending instant alerts, seeing the list of participants and reminding the others to respond etc can be easily done in the app or software.
Cons of using Chat Application
The cons of using a Chat application to manage your resident association or apartment community is plenty.
Lack of Structure, no clear thread in messaging, not enough features that are relevant to a society or apartment management need, no payment facility and tracking are few to name. There are pros of using chat applications like whatsapp because of the ease of use and availability of it in everyones phone. However, it will help to understand the Pros And Cons Of Using Chat To Manage Your Residents Association.
Although chat makes it convenient to get in touch with your residents, it comes with its own pitfalls.
If you are ready to get an app to manage your resident association, then you should remember the following things while investing in an app for your society
Why choose ONNE as your society Management App
Getting an app for your society for easy management is super easy on ONNE. One of your committee members downloads ONNE and creates an account. All they have to do is share the association name, their name and mobile number. Once they verify their OTP, the basic App is created.
From this point, he/she can invite residents to join the app with the ‘easy to invite’ option available within the app. They can invoice using whatsapp, email, sms, phone book or even invite manually, one by one.
Invitation is sent out from the resident association name and all the resident has to do is click on the link and download. Once they are connected the app, they will start receiving information from the committee members in a structured manner.
Automation to Save time
ONNE offers a host of functions for the resident management to reduce manual work and save time. From automating payment reminders to sending instant alerts, reaching the resident on his mobile phone is extremely easy using ONNE APP.
Every information sent using the app appears in specific sections making it easy to retrieve information. Messages can be the format of the following
- Posts with photos, documents, videos, links
- Posts without any attachment
- Instant Alert Messages
- Event Creation
Each message is sent with a headline and body copy space. Committee members can access each of these specific sections and trace messages sent earlier without the need to keep scrolling forever. You can also create polls and get responses from the residents making it easy to take decisions.
Data Security & Privacy
At ONNE we believe that technology must be available at affordable cost making it easy for everyone to get an app. Therefore any app on ONNE is priced based for the bare minimum yet necessary features for that business. In the case of society management app or resident association app, the price of the app is Rs 1429 / year only.
Loaded with Essential Features
ONNE app provides all the essential features and function to help resident association committee members to coordinate with residents and also manage their operational needs of their apartment or society.
1) Scheduling meetings
Have a committee meeting? No problem. Create an event in ONNE app with the date and time and send it to the resident members or committee members who should be attending the event. You will know how many of them have seen the event invite and or responded to it. It also becomes easy to remind them to respond in the event that they have not replied to the message. The beauty of this function is this - it sits in the ONNE calendar or the resident and he/she will be able to look at the calendar and see the list of events he has responded to or yet to respond with dates. An easy way to manage ones schedule.
2) Payment Collection
Every apartment or society will be collecting payments from the residents for different occasions. Be it a regular maintenance fee or one off payments. Committee members can create payment invoices and send to the entire resident community or to individual residents. Residents can pay using ONNE app itself since we have an integrated payment gateway within the app, making it easy for you to make payments.
Payment can be made through debit card, credit card, net banking, UPI and more. If residents want to pay cash or by cheque, they can do that as well within ONNE APP. All they have to enter is the correct receipt number or cheque number and account gets automatically tallied.
When invoices are created, it goes with the resident association name and branding. Setting up a date helps in sending automatic reminders to the residents to make the payment before and after the due date. No need for calling and reminding them since the app does it for you When residents pay, an automatic payment receipt is generated and sent to them. Save your time and effort. Keep track of all the payments and invoices using a simple payment dashboard in ONNE
Imagine having a section in the app which every member or resident in your community can access with ease? A document with important phone numbers of doctors, clinics, fire engine, nearest police station for example. OR document relating to the association rules and regulation and policies. Residents can easily access them and when needed within ONNE app instead of asking you everytime they have a need.
4) Easy Contact
Include the name, email, phone number and even photo of each of the committee members in your ONNE APP. Residents in your community or building can look for the secretary or president and call them directly when they want. This makes your association be seen in positive light and as a readily accessible committee team who will be available for the residents
Taking opinion from residents is extremely important. You can create polls and get their responses on any major decisions you want to make in the society or apartment. Create your poll question and simply share within your app on ONNE.
6) Instant Alerts
Send instant alerts using your app on ONNE. No water supply? Let them know in a message that gets delivered to their mobile phone instantly. Push notifications help in ensuring that your messages are never missed out.
7) Event Creation
Creating events such as diwali party, new year celebration etc is made easy using your app on ONNE. Set up the date and time for the event and invite members to attend. They can even RSVP for the event and you will know how many of them will attend the event in real time.
8) Multiple Admin Access
Your committee will have more than 1 or 2 members. Divide responsibilities by assigning the other committee members as admins of the app. They will be able to engage and respond to residents queries so that turnaround time for communication is real quick.
9) Group Management
Create as many groups you want in your ONNE app. Groups can be committee member groups, resident building A, building B, Ladies group, Volunteer group and so on. There are no restrictions in the number of groups you create, Add people to different groups and send messages only relevant to them. This helps in keeping communication clean for all residents.
10) Registration Form
Use the registration form in ONNE to create any custom question. This is a great way to collect data from the residents. Information such as name, profession, gender, age, etc can be collected and you can export this data and store it in the cloud or any place of your choice. A registration form helps the committee to keep track of all the residents in their society or apartment and they can keep updating this information when new tenants come to stay.
A resident association needs are different from a school's needs or a clinic needs. Your app or software should cater to your requirements and yet be friendly on the pocket. Get your society management app or apartment management software on ONNE.
ONNE provides a ready to use mobile app to facilitate society management and apartment management for as low as Rs 1429 per year.