Why A Facility Management System Doesn't Make For A Great Tenant Portal

The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted many industries and commercial real estate is no exception. The shift to remote work accompanying the pandemic has decreased the demand for commercial real estate

Therefore, landlords and property managers are looking for new ways to make their tenants' lives easier, hoping to remain competitive in the commercial real estate industry. 

In doing so, many are turning to technology to interact with their tenants. More and more landlords and property managers are embracing the use of tenant portals. 

Some may be tempted to use a facility management system as a tenant portal. Read on to learn why we advise against this.

What is a Facility Management System?

A facility management system is a platform that enables organisations to oversee the running of their facilities. This can include a wide range of tasks, such as maintenance, repairs, lease management, occupant experience and energy management.

Managing a facility is a complex and multifaceted responsibility. A facility management system allows those tasked with managing a facility to access and share all the information in one platform. While this may have some overlaps with a tenant portal, be careful not to confuse the two.


What is a Tenant Portal?

A tenant portal is a platform that allows tenants to deal with all their property and lease-related matters in one place.

A tenant platform typically takes the form of an app or a website. Tenants will generally create an online account that lets them access the portal by logging in with a username and password.

Once on the tenant portal, the tenant should be able to perform most of the functions related to their leased premises. Such functions include lease management, tenant feedback, paying rent, receiving notices and submitting maintenance requests.

It allows property managers to communicate with tenants through announcements and newsletters. In addition, it enables them to timeously attend to any incidents or issues that the tenants report.


Why A Facility Management System Should Be Separate From Tenant Communications

A facility management system contains almost all available information about a building being leased. Therefore, tenants and property managers might be tempted to use a facility management system as a tenant portal. However, these systems would not make a great tenant portal. 

A common misconception about facility management systems is that they are easy for a layperson to navigate and understand. This is often not the case. 

They are designed to incorporate many complex tasks involved in facility management. It can be difficult for a tenant to understand the system and use it in their capacity as a tenant.

There is some overlap in the functionality of facility management systems and tenant portals. However, they are two different platforms designed for different purposes and people. 

Having everything on one platform will be confusing for both the tenants and the facility manager. By putting a separate tenant portal in place, you can improve tenant experience. It gives them a dedicated channel through which they can communicate with the facility manager, report problems and access resources.  

Most tenants will find tenant portals to meet most of their needs and be much easier to navigate and use than a facility management system.


Final Thoughts

To remain competitive in the world of commercial real estate today, it is no longer enough to simply provide your tenants with property that matches their needs. You need to focus on your tenants' overall experience. 

To provide a good tenant experience, it is key to have a good tenant portal in place where you can communicate with your tenants, keep them up to date, and address any issues they might have. 

This portal must be separate from your facilities management system as you don’t want to confuse your tenants or make it complicated for them to communicate with you through a complex system.  


If your organisation is looking for a tool to involve all tenants in property management for better decision-making on workplace and property strategies, have a look at Falcony | Observe.

We are building the world's first operational involvement platform. Our mission is to make the process of finding, sharing, fixing and learning from issues and observations as easy as thinking about them and as rewarding as being remembered for them.‍

By doing this, we are making work more meaningful for all parties involved.

More information at falcony.io.

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