Two Ways Tech Can Help or Hurt Your Productivity

by: Shad Bookout Time waits for no man. It is the one constant in the universe that cannot be stopped. Every day, the vast majority of us seek to discover more of it and how to use the precious little bit of it we have more effectively. But then we get sucked into the void. A mountain of “other things” continue to attack our allotment of time. We try to fight it to no avail. As soon as one distraction is defeated, another takes its place. In the end, we just journey on not really knowing if the next moment is something planned or something-
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Now That Prime Day Has Passed, What Happens Next

by: Shad Bookout Prime Day 2017 is in the record books, and it was an event to remember. It has been suggested that the total sales reached nearly $2 Billion while surpassing last year's sales volumes by 60%. And while the final numbers from Prime Day are still being tallied, the real value lies not in the profits made but by the connections made to customers. Prime Day has become almost like the new Black Friday.  It has already become the second largest day of online shopping (second only to Cyber Monday). And the packages currently traveling-
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Get Ready, the Packages are Coming

by: Shad Bookout For weeks now, your package receiving area has languished as the volume of arriving packages has seemed to stabilize. Even though your are still burdened by the sheer volume that piles up on a daily basis, you have finally found a pardon from the onslaught brought on by the various holidays of the last six months. Thanksgiving through Christmas and into the New Year saw a record number of deliveries. Over 60% of people in the U.S. have an Amazon Prime account, and that led to nearly 68 million packages delivered over the six-week-
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How Do Old School and New Tech Help Get Packages to You?

by: Shad Bookout Most of us are borderline obsessed with new technology. We are captivated to seek out the newest, greatest things that can help optimize our lives or just give us that momentary distraction we can tell our friends about. Others, while in the minority, feel that the old ways are still the best. They see the new world around them as removing the humanity of experiences that we all share in favor of life behind a screen. The two ideologies seem at odds and in a constant war between the ways of the old and the new. But the truth is-
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How The World of Packages is Getting More Complex

by: Shad Bookout Grandparents love to tell stories that often begin with, Back in my day….”. And while it is true that we live in a world that is evolving faster than ever before, there are some things that just seem to change faster than others. As an example, the iPhone is only 10 years old. Online steaming video only started around 2005. AI (artificial intelligence) personal assistants such as Amazons’ Alexa are the newest craze (except for those fidget spinner things). So the rise of certain trends that change society are common, but-
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How Do You Spend Your Information Currency?

By: Shad Bookout If knowledge is power, then we live in a time of great distribution of that power. More information is available to more people than ever before. This is not just a factor of the data that people are paying for. You can learn more about your customers and those those whom you target, simply as a consequence of taking part in the world around you. From social media to mobile tech to just observational behavior, the things you can learn about the people you engage with is unparalleled in today’s technologically-driven society.-
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Is The Future Really Here Already?

By: Shad Bookout Movies and television are full of different ways and dates that describe the future. Look at the Simpsons’ uncanny ability to soothsay their way into pop culture lore (but at nearly 700 episodes they have had the most opportunities to get it right). We look around us and wonder: where are all the things that were predicted? Where are the flying cars? Where is my house on the moon? Where are the androids? But these futures are much more illusive and complicated than you think. However, if you look closely, the future many have-
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How You Can Get Ahead With A Little Digital Spring Cleaning

by: Shad Bookout Now that spring is officially here, the time has come to do a little spring cleaning. The annual ritual sacrifice of the things that are getting in your way helps many people find more in both their home and business spaces. We spend hours sorting and cleaning, in order to increase our productivity and our happiness. So, if we do it with our spaces at home and at the office, why do we not take the same approach to our digital spaces as well? The time has come to get a grip on our technology. Here is how you can get ahead with a-
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How Do You Achieve More Luck In Your Business?

by: Shad Bookout We have all expressed it and we have all asked for it. “Good Luck” is one of the most common affirmations expressed, yet we know so little about what it really means. Countless notable authors and poets have spent connecting the wishes of the hopeful to the factors of luck and circumstance. But luck is not a result of things that just happen. Luck is a skill set, and, just like any skill, it can be learned, developed, and honed. Luck is not something that happens. Luck is something we make happen. So, in your business, what-
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Are You Too Distracted For These Three Productivity Tips?

by: Shad Bookout The world we work in today is noisy… very, very noisy. The endless array of chirps, dings, and notifications that surround us have become the backtrack to our daily lives. And as a result, many of us have become uncontrollably Pavlovian in our reactions to the barrage of digital stimulus. <ding> I must check who sent that email <chirp> I must see that text <beep> Insert social media here <ring> I wonder who is calling The distractions are endless. It is amazing that we are able to get anything accomplished.-
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These Are 4 Pieces of Tech That We Love

by: Shad Bookout Valentine’s Day is once again upon us and, across the world, people are scrambling to and from stores to find the right things for the person(s) they love. Flowers, cards, jewelry, clothes, and many other items will be procured, wrapped, bagged, and tagged (many with a heart drawn on them). However, for some, everyday is Valentine’s Day. Why wait until once a year to express how much you love you significant other, your children, your pets, or your friends? That is why today, we are going to celebrate these 4 pieces of tech-
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What Do The Journeys of a Package Count For?

by: Shad Bookout I was born not long ago in a factory far from here. Bits of those that came before me are embedded within my skin. Bundled together with my brethren, I set out on my first journey into the world. I do not know if my travels will take me around the block or around the world. Like those that came before me, I am destined for a greater purpose. The possibilities for my destiny are endless. Will I be entrusted with great wonders, or simply embedded with mundane accoutrement? Will I go forth with items of exceptional worth or mediocre-
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What Gear is Your MultiFamily Community Using?

by: Shad Bookout Power. Power comes from control, and control is not always easy to obtain. A championship cyclist has no issues with simply riding a bike. But to power to the front of the race, they must take control. Their success comes from using their strength, mixed with the tools that surround them — namely their bicycles. Though the use of gears, they are able to climb seemingly insurmountable hills and speed through nearly endless valleys at breathtaking speed. Proper use of gears can help you go from fast to slow, from weakness to strength,-
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This is The Tech That Changed 2016

by: Shad Bookout 2016 is in the record books. This will be seen in history as a year of great change — both socially and technologically. Most will remember events such as the Presidential Election, the proliferation of the Zika virus, and the continued rise to terrorism thought the world. But 2016 also brought with it great strides in technology and memorable moments of advancement in the digital world that ties us together. These are our picks for the top tech advancements of 2016 that will continue to impact our lives for years to come. The-
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What The Holiday Season Really Means To Your Office

by: Shad Bookout It all started on November 23 and, for some, it began even earlier than that. Now, with the holiday season in full swing, most businesses and offices have gone through some changes. Some of these have brought joy to team members and customers. Others have created a headache for management and owners. And, as we approach the precipice of the season, one thing is for certain: our offices will never quite be the same. Productivity and Sand It is amazing the difference a few days can make when it comes to the productivity of your-
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This is the Truth Behind This Year's Holiday Package Overload

By: Shad Bookout The day has finally arrived. The holiday shopping season is here and this year will be like none previous. With Black Friday deals starting online as early as the first of November, and in-store deals at some locations covering all of last week (and some even sooner) you are probably already feeling the effects of the arriving packages. Well hold onto your PCs because the season and package delivery are just gong to continue to get bigger through the end of the year. Cyber Monday Bring Forth Brown Tuesday The packages are coming!-
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A Look Back at NMHC OpTech 2016

By: The PackageLog Team One of the highlights of our year was attending the 2016 NMHC OpTech conference. Each year, this outstanding event brings together the brightest minds in the multi-family industry as they join together with the top multi-family owners and operators in the nation. The future of our industry is explored during these three days and the top innovations driving that future are discovered. From the speakers, to the networking, to the exhibit hall, this conference was truly one for the ages. The Future is ours Together One-
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NMHC OpTech 2016 Review

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This week I attended NMHC OpTech 2016 in Dallas, TX. This was our third consecutive year attending this event, so we were excited to be there again. The event began with the opening session on Monday afternoon and a reception in the exhibit hall right after. While it’s a short day, it is a nice way to get things started. Get everyone revved up for the next day and follow that with cocktails and networking (a.k.a. hanging out with industry colleagues).
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How You Can Control Time And Bend It To Your Will

by: Shad Bookout Time is a great enigma. It is the most troublesome of mankind’s creations. Our perceptions of the passage of time can cause great dread as we come to the realization that we have little control over it. Nothing in the universe can stop the ticking of the seconds. Countless articles have been written about how to discover more time and how to etch out little bits so that the stress of time can be less burdensome. But time cannot simply be created. Time just is. So rather than searching for frivolous avenues to create time, maybe-
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How Do You Maintain Your Brand’s Relevance?

By: Shad Bookout The world seems to be moving faster than ever before and, alongside it, so does the passage of time. In our ever-changing, fast -paced society, things do not stay popular for very long. This is often reflected in how few TV shows have sustained popularity. This new societal perspective makes it much more difficult for brands to grab a potential customer’s attention and to keep it. Look at Pokemon Go as an example. The launch of the much-anticipated app in July was heralded as a game-changer in the mobile integration market. Businesses-
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How to Develop Great Leaders at Your Company

by: Christine Blank Everyone wants to be the kind of leader that their employees trust, respect and look up to. Everyone wants to be the calm in the eye of the storm that is often created in our fast-paced businesses – especially those of us who deal with a multitude of customers and residents on a daily basis. However, that type of leadership is sorely lacking in our country. In fact, one in three employees doesn’t trust their employer, according to Edelman’s Trust Barometer. What a missed opportunity by CEOs, managers and other leadership-
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How Do You Weather the Storms That Affect Your Brand?

By: Shad Bookout There is a storm coming. You can’t see it yet but you know it is out there, just waiting over the horizon. There is no wind, no rain and no snow with this storm. But the effects can be just as devastating as the most severe climatological event. Tie yourself in and prepare for the long haul. Your business is being impacted and it is up to you to help it weather the storm. The Origins of the Tempest There is nearly no one single event that can totally devastate a company’s success. Usually it is a series of happenings that-
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This is What the Olympics Can Teach You About Productivity

By: Shad Bookout All eyes in the world have been focused on Brazil as the games of the 31st Olympiad are underway. While most people are glued to the storylines surrounding athletes like Usain Bolt and Michael Phelps, there is another story that has been quietly occurring outside of the spotlight. For both Olympic organizers and athletes alike, productivity is a major key to success. The lessons learned could help propel our brands (both personal and professional) to the next level. This is what the Olympics can teach you about productivity: The-
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What Can The Olympics Teach You About Your Business?

By: Shad Bookout Every other year, as the Olympic anthem once again returns to our TVs, we join together as a nation to watch our champions battle in the thrill of competition. And it is not only Americans who are watching. The whole world is united under the Olympic rings. All the things that divide us are pushed aside, as we focus more on the things that unite us. That is the true meaning of the Olympics. It is not about winning medals or watching the heart-string competitor bios from the NBC broadcast team. It is about celebrating that we all-
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How To Discover If Your Technology Is Friend Or Foe

By: Shad Bookout “It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has exceeded our humanity” – Albert Einstein It has been more than 50 years since Albert Einstein uttered these words. In the past half century, the Technological Revolution has consumed our global society. We have been to the moon and placed robots on mars. We have charted the human genome and are on the cusp of eradicating malaria. We carry near unlimited information and the ability to communicate to nearly anyone in our pockets. We live in an amazing world filled-
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Next Week is Prime Time for Package Delivery

By: Shad Bookout After a full year of waiting, one of the biggest shopping days of the year has returned. Amazon Prime Day is once again upon us and on July 12, everyone will be hovering around their computers, smartphones, and tablets waiting for the next great deal to be unveiled. It also means that the shipping and delivery of package volumes not seen since Cyber Monday will deluge businesses and apartment communities across the U.S. Here is what you need to know in advance of the return of Prime Day: During last year’s debut of Prime-
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App Makes One-Click Package Logging A Reality And It’s Now Available For Android And iOS.

PackageLog® Pro allows users to ScanCam™ packages into PackageLog® instantly by simply taking a picture (one-click) of the label and tracking number with a tablet or mobile device. One-Click Package LoggingOrlando, FL – From the developers of PackageLog®, Logware® announces PackageLog® Pro allowing users with one-click to simply take a quick photo of an inbound parcel label(s) to automatically log packages into PackageLog® via tablet or mobile...
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Technology’s Impact, Our Addiction, And The End Of The Modern World… or Not

By: Gustavo Ortiz End of the Modern World If all the lights went out tomorrow, where would we be? The truth is, we’d be lost. Last year, I watched a really interesting series called Revolution, where this very thing happens. Basically, all things requiring electricity stop working and, quite frankly, the thought is really scary. It threw everything and everyone back 200 years. Think about that. We’re talking no lights, no hot water and sending anything express meant adding two more horses to the stagecoach. We live in an age where we are-
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Cause Your Customers to React, Act and Remember

By: Shad Bookout It has become harder and harder to capture and keep the attention of potential and current customers. The endless barrage of brand-driven advertising from multiple sources makes it difficult to stand out in the marketplace. The not-stop dings, beep and chimes of mobile devices has severely diminished the attention span of our culture. And, once you have connected to customers, it is challenging mission to keep the attention that you have worked so hard to earn. This is even truer for brands within the multi-family industry. The-
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How Does Your Team Grab Hold of Momentum?

By: Shad Bookout Momentum is a cleverly-disguised, two-way street that runs throughout all facets of your business. Operations, sales, marketing and every other department must yield to the power of momentum. When it works in your favor, momentum can turn a challenging situation into a series of glorious victories. But when momentum is not in your favor, you feel as though you were Sisyphus, pushing the boulder up the hill. Momentum can be your worst enemy or your greatest ally. Here are some ways you can take hold and let momentum help lead your-
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Your Customers Will Stop Hating You If…

By: Shad Bookout Your customers today are smart…real smart. In fact, you would be shocked to learn just how smart they really are. The information revolution over the past few years has allowed them to know more about the brands they choose than ever before. They know your history. They know what people are saying about your company. They even often know about the corporate culture that you project. The level of access to information about your brand that customers possess is unprecedented. Because of this, you can either be loved… or hated.-
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16 Bad Habits That Are Sabotaging Your Productivity

With all the discussions about how to increase productivity we often miss that observations that we may be sabotaging ourselves. It is important to recognize the bad habits that will lead you down the path of productivity disruption. This article from Business Insider provides a great list of things you should watch out for.
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3 Tips to Transform Your Work Life From Tech-Stressed to Tech-Happy

By: Shad Bookout Is it just us, or does your offices seem like it is more hectic than ever before? The new digital age was supposed to usher in a new era of ease and create opportunities for most people to work less – or at least less hard. But sometime it looks like the opposite has happened. The same technology that was supposed to make our work lives less cumbersome has us reacting to the chimes and chirps of our smart phones like Pavlovian dogs and has us responding to work email at midnight while we binge-watch Game of Thrones on our tablets. The-
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6 Business Apps To Cure Your Productivity And Marketing Weaknesses

Maybe, there really is an app for anything. When it comes to office apps that are helping team be more productive, Slack is all the rage. But there are lots of different apps out there that can help you business both in its productivity and when it comes to marketing. We found this recent article from Forbes that mentions some of our favorites.
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A Look at the Biggest Challenge in Multi-Family Today

By: Shad Bookout Every role within the multi-family world looks at the apartment industry universe with their own unique perspective. This means that the good things (and the bad) seen by one individual can be drastically different from the next. This vast ocean of viewpoint becomes even wider when you now take into account the observations of our residents. Things – even very simple things—can in fact become completely out of whack when the same item(s) have far different meaning and impact to each different group. To make matters worse,-
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Dealing with Package Delivery: From Past to Present to Future

By: Shad Bookout The world of packages is evolving faster than ever before. Twenty years ago, Amazon was founded out of a garage and only shipped a few packages each month. The following year, eBay was founded and people sold and shipped items to Americans across the country. Still, the impact on society was minimal. We bought most of the things that we wanted at the store. Then, on June 29, 2007, everything changed. And the waves of changes are still rolling in as a result. The first drop in the flood that is volume package delivery was the release-
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How to Retain More Residents on Apartment Day and Beyond

By: Shad Bookout April 5th was National Apartment Housing Day and there has never been a better time to celebrate everything about the apartment industry. As managers, leasing teams, maintenance teams, executive staff and even suppliers cheer for the multi-family industry, the residents who call our apartments home cheer for other reasons. They cheer for the amenities, they cheer for the location, they cheer for price, and they cheer for us – their industry supporters. Each day that we work diligently to retain the residents that are our life’s-
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Top 10 Strange Items to Ship for April Fool’s Day

By: Christine Blank You can have some fun with your co-workers and friends this April Fool’s Day. You could mail some of the most unique packages imaginable – everything from an envelope of glitter to a coconut. Yes, a coconut. Even if you are not into pulling pranks yourself, you may receive some of these strange packages at your apartment community or office. Here are the 10 strangest items you may send or receive in the mail on April Fool’s Day: When Ship Your Enemies Glitter started, the company got so many orders, they had to shut-
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The Funny Thing About Being in Property Management Is…

By: Shad Bookout Only a handful of people in the world have ever uttered the phrase, “I want to be in property management when I grow up”. And 99% of those people have family roots within the industry. It is a shame that such little notoriety comes with a profession that has such a meaningful impact. In the U.S., 3.8 million people choose to live the apartment lifestyle. This, in turn, supports more than 12 million jobs and contributes more than $1 trillion to the economy. Those are all big numbers. And that is just what they are…only numbers. The-
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Why You Should Become a Lighthouse for Your Customers

By: Shad Bookout Ever since I was a child, I was amazed at the wonders of lighthouses. Images of sailors and pirates crossing the seas with the beacon of the lighthouse shinning in the distance filled my head. Picture the despair and the woe of those who have been at sea for many days with no land in sight. Then suddenly, when all hope is lost, they see a light on the horizon: the beams from the lighthouse safely lighting their passage. However, in the modern technologic age, the lighthouse is in danger of being replaced by automation and digitization.-
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Spring Sees New Blooms in Package Delivery

By: Christine Blank Spring has sprung and that can only signal one thing for your business or community: a significant increase in package and mail deliveries. While volume may have slowed slightly after everyone got back to work after the Christmas and winter holidays, it is about to spike again. Parents and teachers are ordering uniforms for children’s sport teams. High school students are ordering clothing and accessories for their spring formals, proms, and graduation ceremonies. And don’t forget about Easter! Millions of Americans –-
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Join the Pro-Packages Party

By: Shad Bookout The political season is in full swing as Republicans and Democrats crisscross the U.S., debating the validity of their candidacy. Meanwhile, another debate is quietly taking place in the package rooms and closets that dot our county’s landscape. That debate centers around whether or not to accept package deliveries or to find other means for your apartment residents to receive packages. And, although the debate will continue for weeks and months to come, we would like to declare our support of the Pro-Package Party. The Crux-
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The Multifamily Masks That We Wear

By: Shad Bookout Masks are a fundamental part of our lives in the multi-family industry. Part of it is putting on a great face for our teams and customers on days we may not be at 100%. Other times, we may find our residents to be disagreeable, and may therefore dawn a mask of ourselves so that we can deliver a better customer experience. The same can be said for co-workers and even the suppliers that visit our doors. Even suppliers can undergo persona changes from one apartment community to the next in order to be more engaging to the staff members-
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These Can Be the Two Most Aggravating Words in Business

By: Shad Bookout Over time, every business, every brand and every company will experience a variety of highs and lows. The challenges presented by an ever-evolving marketplace have made it so the opportunities for success are more numerous than ever before. But you are not able to please everyone. Both team members and customers alike will feel the disappointment at times and how you respond to these disappointments will set the stage for your brand’s eventual success or failure. When these circumstances happen, one of the most dangerous things-
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6 Office Hacks to Eliminate Distractions

By: Christine Blank The majority of us work in busy offices, where not only are employees and customers coming and going every day, but so are packages. Delivery drivers from UPS, FedEx, USPS and other mail services are on our doorstep daily. And then we must distribute those packages to employees and clients – some of whom never come pick them up. A mountain of packages awaits us on a nearly daily basis. But we digress. Packages are not the only office distraction gumming up our workday. Here are the top six hacks to eliminate distractions-
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In Business, Silence is Deadly

By: Shad Bookout There is no situation more unsettling to a business professional than when you enter your company’s office or storefront and there is no noise. No clicks of key boards. No email chimes. No one on the phone. No customers are present. You enter and are just met with absolute silence. Some will tell you that the worst time of all is when you have an upset customer. But an upset customer is at least engaged and providing suggestions – not always the best ideas, but at least they are ideas. The silence, on the other hand, means-
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Package Delivery and the Space – Time Equation

By: Shad Bookout The reason that it is called “space” is that there is a lot of it. But space here on planet Earth is at a premium. As our population grows, so do the burdens we are placing on resources. Everything is getting more crowded and, as a result, more stressful. This is especially true when it come to package delivery. It seems like just a few short years ago when the arrival of the delivery driver was a cause for celebration. It was almost as if it was you birthday when the corrugated cardboard box arrived with its sterile while-
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Are you the Master of the 5 ‘W’s?

By: Shad Bookout Every day, you encounter customers that are filled with questions. In some cases, it seems that all they ever have are questions. And they expect you to have all the answers. It is not important to them if those answers are a part of your job description. They do not care that they could probably discover the solutions themselves. It is not their concern what your company policy dictates. What they care about is your ability to serve them and that service almost always revolves around the 5 “W”s. Who Needs It – Do you-
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Are You Creating Pearls of Just Big Irritations?

By: Shad Bookout For my entire life, I have been fascinated by pearls. These mystical jewels that some don as decorative accents around their neck are like no other. Emeralds, diamonds and sapphires are all derived from minerals in the Earth. But pearls are made. The journey a pearl takes during its creation inside an oyster begins very small. And so too, the journey your team members will undergo begins small. But from small beginnings, a small irritation can grow great wonders – or suffer a tragic fate. One Day an Irritation Starts Not-
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How Do You Show Your Customers the Love?

By Shad Bookout Why did your customers choose you? Somehow, in a world of growing competition and unprecedented access to information about brands, they chose you. Was it because you had the best advertising? Or maybe, you had the best prices. You could even possibly have filled a need that they had and the stars aligned for your brand to be in the right place, at the right time. We spend thousands upon thousands of dollars to get customers to our doors, but as soon as they arrive, it seems like our drive and passion to keep them as customers disappears.-
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Is “That Resident” a Hindrance or is Something Else Going On?

By: Shad Bookout Every apartment community on Earth has at least one. Most have two or three. You cannot escape them. They will hunt you down and they will find you at the most inopportune moments. They are a daily presence and, in some cases, a daily challenge. But there is more to “that resident” than meets the eye. And you know exactly which of your residents we are referring to…don’t you? They come into your office nearly every day. This one resident causes fear in most property management teams. When you see him or her coming through-
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Will You Win The Super Bowl of Apartments?

By: Shad Bookout Every renter wants something unique and special in their new apartment home.  Many times, it is directly related to the circumstances where they are coming from. Every story is special and it is important that you take the time to understand what your residents need, want, and especially, what they are going to judge you on. For families that are downsizing or upsizing their apartment, size may be the amenity they crave. For busy executives on the go, the key to a happy life may be extended hours to use community amenities or-
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Groundhogs, Apartments and the Definition of Insanity

By: Shad Bookout Albert Einstein said it best when he declared that the definition of insanity is “doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results”. So, as members of the apartment industry, why do we find ourselves taking that well-traveled path time and time again? We undergo the same routines, which lead to the same results, day in and day out. It is almost as if we are stuck in some cosmic loop like Bill Murray in Groundhog Day. But, we do not have to relegate ourselves to repeat the mistakes of the past. We can-
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Does Your Office Suffer From this Dreaded Disease?

By: Shad Bookout There is a disease that is affecting every office around the world. You have felt its ill effects yourself from time to time. It causes offices thousands of dollars and hundreds of manpower hours each year. Today, we will discuss the repercussions of this dreaded plague and the opportunities that you have to inoculate your business. It all starts with a pen… What is Items Displacement Disorder (IDD) IDD touches us all in our workplace. Its first symptoms pop up when your coworker innocently requests to borrow a pen. You-
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How To Keep Your Best Employees

Keeping your best employees is crucial for developing your A-Team, so finding some of the best practices related to this challenging task is always on our radar. Losing a critical team member can be crippling to any business between the rest of the team having to fill in, costs involved in lost productivity and research for a competent replacement, and just the amount of time it takes for the whole process is exhausting. Erika Andersen, a contributor to Forbes.com gives some...
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Get Ready – Get Set – or Go

By: Shad Bookout What are you doing right now? No, right NOW (other than reading this blog, that is)! I am sure that there is some level of work craziness that is happening around you. This is especially true of multi-family professionals. The phones are ringing, residents are walking in, a prospect tour is on its way, my managers is still asking for that report, half the team is out sick, etc. How are you supposed to get any real work done? When it comes down to it, at any given moment, you fall into one of these three categories: Getting-
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What Are the Tides of Your Customer Service?

By: Shad Bookout As dawn breaks over the oceanfront, you look out at the first waves of the morning. The funny thing about shorelines is that they are always changing. The grains of sand you walk upon today will be replaced by new ones as quickly as the tide can erase your foot prints. The ever-changing tide delivers new surprises to the shore and washes away the memories of the past. The tide can be gentle; only raising and lowering a matter of inches. However, some places see immense daily tides measuring in many feet. Just like the tide, the-
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17 Office Hacks to Make Work More Tolerable

We found a gem on the "interwebs" this week and had to share. Mashable.com shows us 17 simple, but really amazing office hacks that any office can use. I have to say I found these incredibly useful. The burrito holder and bottle opener are my 2 favorites...
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Will the New Year Bring the Same Office Challenges?

By: Shad Bookout Congratulations. You did it! Not only did you survive 2015, you survived the busiest shipping holiday season in history. It seems like every hour, the UPS driver was dropping off a tower of parcels. They may have been for the co-workers in your office. They may have been for the residents at your apartment community. They may have even been for a variety of people served from your mail room. But whatever your scenario, the packages kept coming and you kept battling to try to keep ahead of the growing mountain. At the end of the-
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PackageLog Saves the New Year (A Package of Resolutions)

By: Shad Bookout  The rush of packages that comes with the holidays is over…or is it? The combined efforts of UPS, FedEx and the US Postal Service have already resulted in more than 250 million packages delivered since Thanksgiving. For many apartment communities, it felt as though the majority came through their community’s front door. And, in 2015, we saw the important discussion of how to deal with the ever-increasing volume of package deliveries take center stage at multi-family conferences across the U.S. A variety of solutions came-
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PackageLog Save Christmas: Episode 5 (‘Twas the Day Before Christmas)

By: Shad Bookout ‘Twas the day before Christmas and all through our apartments Every resident was busy digging through compartments. They were wrapping their presents with ribbon and bow. And listening to the radio play “Let it Snow, Let it Snow, Let it Snow.” All the residents were happy, not a single one mad; Not even the lady in 3C (What a hag!). And I was in my office pulling reports when, the UPS driver I feared came in. The Leasing Agents ran away to hide and my assistant claimed she was on lunch (She lied). Mountains-
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PackageLog Saves Christmas: Episode 4 (Winter is Coming)

By: Shad Bookout The long days of summer have finally been overtaken by the long nights of winter. As Jack Frost prepares for a little nose nipping, the country enters the final push towards Christmas. This Monday was the busiest shipping day of the year. This makes tomorrow (Christmas Eve, Eve) the busiest day of the year in package rooms across the U.S. Every package has its own tale of the journey it has taken – just like the tale I am about to tell you. It begins just as everything else does: very small. As she pulled the blue bow in her-
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Holiday Package Deliveries Not Slowing Down

By: Christine Blank Just when you thought the volume of cards, letters and boxes arriving at your business might be starting to slow, the greatest of holidays for last-minute shoppers has arrived. Today is “Free Shipping Day”, in which many online retailers offer free shipping with guaranteed delivery by Christmas Eve. In fact, more than 900 retailers are participating in the event, including major companies such as Target and Walmart. Shoppers are expected to spend $1.35 billion online today, according to Adobe Digital Index. It is likely-
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PackageLog Saves Christmas: Episode 3 (12 Days of Apartment Christmas)

By: Chelsea Burnett Everyone who is not a scrooge loves this time of year. The pretty lights, the joyous spirit, and the festive decorations bring a smile to nearly every eye. Oh, and cookies…the cookies bring smiles to everyone (especially me). But at some apartment communities, there is a mysterious Grinch that looms around at times. In fact, the Grinch may be sneaking around your community right now. Let’s defeat him with a little holiday cheer as we present the 12 Days of Apartment Christmas: On the 12th day of Christmas, my residents-
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Holidays Bring Community, Togetherness, and Deliveries

By: Shad Bookout As a supplier it is amazing to witness the transformation of apartment communities during the holiday season.  Everyone is in a better mood and has an extra bit of pep in their step. Vendors and residents alike are dropping of tasty treats to the office. Decorations and lights abound. Residents receive a little extra cheer at holiday parties hosted by the apartment community. There is more joy in the air as we all come together as a greater community. At the same time, the benefits of the holiday season on our personal lives-
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PackageLog Saves Christmas: Episode 2 (8 Crazy Nights)

Episode 2: 8 Crazy Nights By: Shad Bookout Hanukkah has arrived and, as the first official event of the holiday season is fully underway, the steady stream of packages continues to fill mail rooms across the country. Sure, during the eight nights of Hanukkah, there will be candles alit upon menorahs and kids spinning dreidels, but there is much more to the Festival of Lights than just these traditional items.  In fact, for many families, Hanukkah is an eight-night celebration filled with gifts, togetherness, family and all the craziness that-
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Use These Tips to Save Christmas at Your Apartment Community

By: Gustavo Ortiz Let the games begin. We are quickly counting down the days until Christmas. As each work day brings us closer to the big day, apartment communities will significantly feel the burdens of the increased surprises that come with the holiday season. From company events to community activities to additional needs from residents and, of course, an ever-increasing flow of package deliveries, time – as well as your sanity – comes at a premium this time of year. Luckily, all is not lost. Follow these three tips to ensure that you-
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PackageLog Saves Christmas

Episode 1: A New Season Begins By: Shad Bookout A new day has dawned across the planet. Many in the U.S. are still trying to recover from their post-Thanksgiving malaise. Just four days removed from the onslaught of Black Friday Shopping and less than 24 hours since the last purchase on Cyber Monday, a quiet calm encompasses households everywhere. However, this is just the deep breath before the long exhale. Package rooms are just now seeing the beginnings of what is shaping up to be the busiest delivery season on record. When the smoke finally-
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Expect package surge Thanksgiving – Cyber Monday

By: Christine Blank While Black Friday and Cyber Monday are always huge shopping days in the U.S., more people than ever before will be ordering their gifts online during those two days this year, meaning that your office will be flooded with packages during the first week in December. Thanksgiving weekend sales are expected to soar 25 percent over last year, according to a new Deloitte survey. To top it off, shoppers expect that 59 percent of their spending will be online over the Thanksgiving weekend, up from 52 percent last year. In addition,-
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What We Give Thanks For

By: Shad Bookout Welcome to Thanksgiving 2015! Let us pause for a moment before we pass the turkey and the cranberry sauce and focus on the true meaning of the holiday. The spirit of Thanksgiving provides an opportunity for us to recognize the things to which we owe our gratitude. For individuals, this often comes in the form of thankfulness for family, friends, good health, opportunities and so on. But businesses are a little different. Many team members and executives may not instantly recognize the things their company should show appreciation-
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A Picture is Worth a Thousand Seconds

By: Shad Bookout Little did they know it at the time but people watching sci-fi shows such as the original Star Trek during the 1960s, or its Next Generation counterpart in the late 80s and early 90s, were watching the future unfold before their eyes. Today, we are watching many of the technological dreams that featured in those shows become staples of our daily lives. Hand-held data devices turned into iPads. Medical scanners similar to the tricorder are in their infancy. Scientists are even working on the real version of a tractor beam. It is-
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How Big is 2 Million?

By: Shad Bookout This week, we were thrilled to announce that the PackageLog package management system had logged its 2 millionth package – just six months after reaching one million packages (see press release).  As businesses and apartment communities continue to feel the pressure of rising package delivery volumes, it becomes all the more important that people learn that there are options out there to help them. Some have gone so far as to ban package delivery altogether. But the real solution lies in learning how to evolve the practices-
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Speed is Everything. But How Fast is Fast?

By: Shad Bookout What is fast? How do you measure fast? Is fast just a comparative perception that varies from person to person? Maybe what is fast to me is slow to someone else. Is fast ever truly achievable? Once a new level of fast is reached, it is often soon surpassed by something even faster. Perhaps fast is less about speed and more about the methods for achieving it. If you examine the history of travel, speed has always been a factor of great concern. It took weeks for the pilgrims to cross the Atlantic on their journey to the New World.-
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Are you “Celebrity”?

By: Shad Bookout We live in a celebrity-obsessed society. All you need to do is watch the news or glance at the magazines in the checkout aisle to see the huge focus we place on people who have reached celebrity status. We all know Ryan Seacrest is a celebrity. So is Elton John. Even politicians (Bill Clinton is the best example) have a certain amount of celebrity status.  But some celebrities are less obvious. They are all around you. In fact, you may even be a celebrity in some people’s eyes. Celebrities have achieved a certain level of-
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Which Amenities Would Your Residents Elect?

By: Shad Bookout As election season enters full swing, the majority of Americans are already fed up with the blow-hard bantering of most of the candidates seeking office.  With months until the actual elections, the non-stop squabbling of political pundits has most people’s ears ringing. All too often, we feel the same way about our apartment residents. However, when you take the time to listen – really listen – to the things they have to say, you will stop seeing them as an interruption in your day. They are the ones who keep us in office-
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What Apartment Residents Fear

By: Shad Bookout It is Halloween time and the multi-family industry is filled to the brim with spooks, specters, and fun filled frights.  Both industry members and apartment residents will spend tons of cash celebrating the monsters within us all. But this is also a time to pause for a moment to consider the decisions you are making when dealing with your residents. Because many of the things you do can drive fear into your residents and that fear may leave them feeling cursed this Halloween. Residents Fear Change Shortly after move-in, your-
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Projected online holiday sales = flood of packages

By: Christine Blank Online retail sales are expected to spike between 6 and 8 percent this holiday season to reach $105 billion, according to the National Retail Federation. In addition, retail analytics firm RetailNext projects that digital’s share of total retail sales for the November and December holiday selling season will rise from 10.5 percent last year to 11.9 percent this year. Overall retail sales are projected to rise 3.7 percent to $630.7 billion. In total, holiday sales are predicted to make up about 19 percent of retail's $3.2-
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The Package Perspective

A Tale By: Shad Bookout It is not a glamorous life but it has its rewards. Sure, in most cases I am quickly discarded once my contents have been revealed but the journey is often terrific. The ends do justify the means. I may be destined for the recycling center, the trash, or to be banished to a dark, musty corner of someone’s attic. I may even continue my life as a bemusement for a few inquisitive felines. But it is the start of my journey and the few days that follow that define me. It all begins in a warehouse. As I sit unfolded and-
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What Signs Are You Showing Your Customers

By: Shad Bookout Signs are all around us. In just the short drive to the grocery store, you encounter hundreds of different signs. Roads signs, street names, billboards and monument signs that mark neighborhoods, apartments, and businesses. These – along with other signs – all mass together to create a non-stop onslaught of information for your eyes. This world of signs carries over into our business lives as well. Some signs are more obvious and some are more subtle, but all of them combine to create the messages that our customers see during-
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Communicate Effectively in the new Global Marketplace

By: Christine Blank We live in an era in which business is a global marketplace. In the 60s and 70s, your neighborhood was your marketplace. In the 80s and 90s, it may have been your region or your city that was the marketplace. Once email became the preferred method of communication, the national scale was where your business could be most effective. Now, we live in a new age, thanks to the evolution of technology and the globalization of business. The world has gotten much smaller – in a good way. Now, we can communicate with our business-
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Not to Worry…Your Stuff has Reservations

By: Shad Bookout It has happened to most of us at some point. You had great plans. But it seems that someone else had the same plans you did. Maybe each of you had plans to rent the party room. Or maybe each of you had reserved freight elevator space at the same time. Whatever your reservation situation was, it has been mishandled by the person who took it. It is a situation that that repeats itself across the world in all walks of life. Of course the scenario is just as prone to afflict people in your office as well. They may need to borrow electronics,-
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Does Your Apartment Resident Feel Like A Martian?

By: Shad Bookout Two hundred twenty five million kilometers. That is the average distance that Mars is from Earth. Needless to say, that is a really, really long way away. It is an incredibly hard place to get to – and an even more difficult place to be if you decided to stay. These facts are the center point of the just released movie “The Martian”, starring Matt Damon. But this can also so serve as an analogy to describe the way that many of our apartment residents feel when dealing with their apartment community and its staff. It-
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Behind the Desk: The Power of the Concierge

By: Shad Bookout All hail the humble concierge. From your desk or podium, you scan across the lobby waiting to fulfill the needs of the people under your care. Apartments, businesses, hotels and others call upon you to serve. You are the wearer of an assembly of hats. You are a multitasker extraordinaire, whose unsung efforts yield little to no glory. Though you are often appreciated, you are also sorely misunderstood. The time has come to pull back the curtain and reveal the wizard that you truly are. You are an expert on nearly anything-
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Does Your Community Build Bridges or Walls for Customers?

By: Shad Bookout The path that each resident takes to get to your apartment community is different and so is the path they will continue on after they have moved in. Some have arrived to your community out of want and some out of need. They seek apartments due to social needs, financial needs, economic needs and a variety of personal needs. The one thing that they all have in common is you and the community that they are a part of. Now it is up to you to decide if you are going to help them be where they need to be. Don’t Erect Barriers to-
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Do You Have a Fantasy Apartment Team?

By: Shad Bookout Welcome back to football! 32 teams have set out on a quest to battle it out in order to reach Super Bowl L.  It also marks the return of the cultural phenomenon of Fantasy Football. For both on-field and fantasy teams, there are a variety of marquee players that are the focus of success. But it takes a complete team of superstars to become a true success. The same can be said about your apartment community team. These are the superstars that you should have in the fantasy team of property management. Your Community Quarterback The-
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What is the Solution for Your Stuff?

By: Shad Bookout When small things go missing, it can often result in a large pain in the end. That same pain is felt when there are disagreements on the who, what, where and when of stuff. Who has it? What was its condition? Where did that thing go? When is that item due back? All of these can lead to headaches for businesses. Time is lost while questions are being asked and stuff is being searched for. But, instead of throwing your hands in the air in frustration, take advantage of a better solution. It is inexpensive, easy to use and even-
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The Labor it Takes Packages to Get to You

By: Christine Blank A package shows up at your home, apartment or office. It is that delivery of new clothes from Amazon that you have been waiting for. Or, it is the that new movie that just came out on Blu-Ray from BestBuy.com. It could even be groceries and toilet paper. We live in an age in which we are all dependent on online shopping for at least a portion of our monthly purchases. But what happens before those packages arrive at your apartment community or business, destined to be distributed to a number of different residents and employees?-
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Is Your Office Productivity Flowing Like a River?

By: Shad Bookout “You drown not by falling into a river, but by staying submerged in it.”-Paulo Coelho Every second of every day at your leasing office is just another drop in the endless river that is the life’s blood of your apartment community. There are times when the needs of residents rain down, causing the flow of the river to turn into a flood of challenges for your work day. There are also droughts where it seems that the flow of new residents has become the trickle of a few drops. If you are not careful, the river will control-
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How Holding Packages Helps Make Apartment Residents Happy

By: Shad Bookout Wilson Phillips sings, “Things will go your way if you hold on for one more day” Kenny Rogers sings, “You have to know when to hold ‘em” If seems everyone these days wants something held. Telephone receptionists ask you to, “Please Hold”.  Friends ask you to “Hold this for me”. We are holding on to our devices, holding on to our wallets and purses and holding all of our other stuff. We have turned into a society that is obsessed with holding things. This also means packages. Your apartment residents are asking-
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Are You Prepared to Make First Contact?

By: Shad Bookout There is a body of science that occupies its time theorizing about the day that life not of this planet makes first contact with us. Some people believe that this has already happened. Regardless, countless of hours and millions of dollars have been dedicated to the study of what happens when this first contact occurs. Everything from public reaction to how to deal with potential invasion has been examined. It is unfortunate that such focus is spent on this when the most interesting discussion of first contact happens every day-
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Solving the Old-School / New-School Equation

By: Shad Bookout In a world dominated by the endless evolution of high-tech, sometimes you need to pause and take a more objective look around. Some of us have a need to make sure that we have all of the newest technology at our fingertips. For others, the adoption of new technology is a painstaking process. Those who seek the new often forget about the success of the old, and those who resist change will miss the vision of a greater future. But there is no reason that the two philosophies cannot harmoniously co-exist. Therefore, solving the Old-School-
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Amazon Becomes World’s Largest Retailer

By: Christine Blank Amazon – along with its millions of packages delivered daily – is truly taking over the world. The online retailer officially became the world’s largest retailer recently, surpassing the former leader, Walmart. The e-commerce giant’s net income for its most recent quarter was a whopping $92 million. That boosted the retailer’s market value to $249 billion, surpassing Walmart’s value of $231 billion. In addition, Amazon has quickly become one of the largest grocery retailers in the U.S. and will likely become-
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What Makes You (And Your Customers) Smile

By: Shad Bookout Look out your office window and see the puppy wanting to play with the little baby. Open your office door and see the box of treats sent by a grateful customer or industry partner.  Click and watch that funny video that everyone has been sharing all week long. All of these things have something in common. They make us smile, and smiling is something all of us need to do more. But there are plenty of other things that make our businesses smile, our customers smile, and everyone else smile. What Makes Businesses Smile Many businesses-
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Package Delivery Makes Apartment Life Better

By: Shad Bookout As technology continues to be the main driving force in the multi-family industry, customer expectations are growing by leaps and bounds. Not only is this being reflected in online reviews but in the overall attitude and demands of apartment seekers. People are seeking the apartment lifestyle, not as an alternative to home ownership but as a life choice. But, as more and more people everyday search out multi-family options, many apartment communities are slow to respond. Even more frightening is that some companies are even-
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Are You the Same or Are You Unexpected

By: Shad Bookout No one has ever said, “I love shopping for a new apartment.” The reality is that, for most people, the entire process of finding a new place to live is a complete pain in the neck. The prospect that is touring your apartment community is likely to have visited up to eight others that same day. For most apartment shoppers, after the third of fourth community tour, they all start to look the same. Each is within an area that would be good to live in. Each has around the same rental rates. On paper, any of the options would be-
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Is Asset Tracking Turning You into a Legendary Explorer

By: Shad Bookout As you enter the chamber, you are already suspicious of what you will find. An extensive search of the surrounding area and making sure to double check the usual locations reveals no signs of the artifact. You begin to explore the surrounding areas and to research the item’s location by interviewing the people around. Of course – as is usual – no one seems to have any knowledge of its last known location or its current whereabouts. Once you complete the extensive search, you come to the realization that the artifact may-
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Is Your Apartment Community a Circus

By: Shad Bookout As a kid, I loved going to the circus. The sights, the sounds, even the smells would ignite my imagination. Sitting in the crowd, I would watch in amazement as the elephants, trapeze artists, lion tamers, and clowns would parade around the arena, entertaining the crowd. For weeks after I left the big top, my dreams would be filled with the announcement, “Ladies and gentlemen; children of all ages…” But the circus is not just for kids. The thrilling theater that is the circus can represent several facets of your apartment-
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Do You Understand "The Power of Now"

By: Shad Bookout Your customers have an unspoken demand. As technology has advanced, this demand has evolved from a grandiose expectation to an absolute necessity of customer service. With our culture’s love of mobile technology – specifically text, email, and social media – this demand is not going away. In fact, it may even become more of a challenge for your company to remain competitive because of the increased empowerment this new digital world had given customers. Not only is your company’s reputation on the line; your credibility-
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Are You Building Dreams, or Are You Erecting Roadblocks?

By: Shad Bookout We work in an amazing industry. Every day, apartment professionals help thousands of people across the nation find new homes.  For some, it will be the first place that they will call their own. For others, life has set forth a set of circumstances that make finding a new apartment a much needed facet of life. Families grow and shrink. People arrive from homes both domestic and abroad. Some seek luxury. For others, affordability is their only desire. Whatever our future resident’s story, it is our duty to assist them on this-
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How Will You Survive Amazon Prime Day on July 15

By: Christine Blank Who doesn’t love a good sale? Many of us quickly stuff down our Thanksgiving turkey dinner and then roll ourselves out the door that night or early the next morning to take advantage of incredible deals for “Black Friday”. Now, shoppers all over the U.S. – and several other countries – don’t have to wait until Black Friday to get incredible deals on electronics such as LED TVs, iPads and computers, along with a number of other products. They can simply order items online during Amazon’s “Prime Day” this Wednesday,-
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Logware Announces Winners From 2015 NAA Education Conference and Expo

Thank you to everyone that visited the Logware™ team at the NAA Education Conference & Exhibition in Las Vegas two-weeks ago! We are proud that so many of you chose to join the Package Resolution Revolution! Two of our visitors won a One-Year Free Subscription to our Logware™ suite of online software, including both PackageLog™ and TrackItLog™. The winners are: Congratulations to our winners! Although you may not have our one-year free subscription giveaway, we have a gift for you too! Click this link to schedule your demo-
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Celebrating our Independence This Fourth of July

By: Christine Blank What does the Fourth of July mean to you? Sure, the first thing many of us think about is how we are going to gather with our friends and family for a barbecue or at a park to watch glorious fireworks displays. And that is natural: food, fireworks and fun go hand-in-hand in with the Fourth of July traditions we have come to celebrate in the U.S. on this day. Of course, the true meaning of the holiday goes way back to July 4, 1776, when the Continental Congress signed the Declaration of Independence, signaling the birth of-
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What Is the Reflection in Your Apartment Community’s Mirror?

By: Shad Bookout When you look in the mirror, what do you see? Is the image staring back really you, or just a reflection of what others see? The same can be asked when we look at our apartment communities in a mirror. Is what we are viewing what is actually there, or just an illusion? The eyes in which we look at our apartment communities are different than those of our residents, prospects, or even team members. People who have been at the apartment community for a long time see a different reflection than those whose time is only just beginning.-
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Lightning-Quick Delivery Services Boost Package Volume

By: Christine Blank Amazon is not the only online retailer of late to offer faster delivery speeds. Unbelievably, in some cities, Amazon delivers whatever their customers want within an hour. That would have been impossible even two years ago, so it is exciting to see how far e-commerce and package shipping have evolved. However, several other large companies are also now offering faster delivery options, making it oh-so-easy for Americans to buy – and receive – whatever they want at the touch of a button. This means that the number-
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Packages Bring the World Together

By: Shad Bookout This week the Logware crew is joining 9,000 other multi-family industry professionals at the 2015 NAA Education Conference and Trade Show in Las Vegas. As we all come together for this yearly event, we pause for a moment to look at the things that bring us together. Not just as a group of professionals joining for knowledge, but as a society of friends and family, working to feel part of a larger community. What Joins Your Community Together? As a society we are joined together by our shared interests and experiences. That-
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A New Day Has Dawned For Tacky Father's Day Gifts

By: Shad Bookout Father’s Day is once again upon us. Celebrated on the third Sunday of June, Father’s Day is a relatively new holiday. It has only been federally recognized since 1972, when Richard Nixon, working hard to become re-elected, signed it into law. However, its origins go back much further. In 1909, “A Spokane, Washington woman named Sonora Smart Dodd, one of six children raised by a widower, tried to establish an official equivalent to Mother’s Day for male parents. She went to local churches, the YMCA, shopkeepers and government-
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The World Cup Of Multi-Family Housing

By: Shad Bookout The Women’s World Cup is in full swing. Soccer fever has once again gripped America and the world. As we watch Team USA take on one team after another, we have noticed many parallels between World Cup Soccer and the multi-family housing industry. It all starts with taking a look at your marketplace as a whole. Group Play in Your Submarket The teams participating in the World Cup are placed into different groups in which they must first compete in order to advance to the championship brackets. If your entire city is the-
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Abracadabra: Keep Your Stuff From Disappearing

By: Shad Bookout It is not really the fault of any one specific thing. In fact, a whole series of events has evolved over the past few years to create an environment where items around the office have a habit of vanishing. First you notice that a stapler or a favorite pen may not turn up when you are searching for them. But then, a whole array of items (often important ones) is discovered to be missing. From small electronics to customer files, to items loaned for employee well-being, why is it that no one seems to know where these things are-
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Doughnuts Help Make The World Go Round

By: Shad Bookout Happy Doughnut Day! It is a magical day where this beloved confection is promoted and provided complimentary to lovers of its tasty goodness.  Doughnuts not only provide a wonderful breakfast or snack to thousands (if not millions) everyday, but are an almost a type of currency within the apartment industry. From apartments providing delicatessens for residents to suppliers bringing delicious sugar-coated jewels to apartment teams – as well as corporate offices treating their teams to a sugary indulgence – doughnuts abound-
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Is Your Business Infected With Venom?

By: Shad Bookout Snakes, spiders, and scorpions! They are the sinister beings of many people’s nightmares. Terror-filled nights, dreaming of the venomous bite and sting of these creepy crawly creatures. But those are just dreams. The fact is that very few people are ever affected by the poisons of these beasts. In fact, there are much more dangerous forces attacking us on a daily basis and their venom is far more potent than the monsters of our dreams. Beware of the monsters that are poisoning your business. Is Your Team Infected by Venom? Some-
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How Big is One Million Packages?

By: Shad Bookout The team at PackageLog™ recently announced the impressive milestone of logging in the one millionth package (learn more by clicking here) into our cloud-based notification system. This accounts for thousands of man-power hours that we have saved office staff and team members all over the U.S., who have to deal with the hassle of millions of packages daily. Businesses, mailrooms, and apartment communities have also benefited from the added communication elements that the automated notifications provide, along with customized mass-
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PackageLog® Surpasses One-Million Packages Milestone After Only 28-Months

New Technology Turns A Million Packages Into A Profound Customer Engagement Opportunity, Saving Thousands Of Hours For Businesses within the US and abroad. Logware™ announces how PackageLog’s “One-Million Packages Delivered” milestone translates to over 4-million unique touch points and 80,000 hours of staff time saved within the last 28 months for businesses that accept packages for others. May 27, 2015 Logware™ announces that over 1 million packages have been logged and delivered by their inbound package management software, PackageLog®.-
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Google to Give Amazon a Run for its Money

By: Christine Blank Google’s announcement last week that it is adding a “buy” button to its site is expected to hike the number of packages sent through Google – and give Amazon and other online retailers a run for their money. While shoppers are used to starting their search for goods and services on Google, they are not used to buying products directly from its site. Soon, shoppers will see “buy” buttons when they search Google for products on their mobile devices. When they click on the buttons, they are taken to the relevant Google-
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Ensure Your Residents Don’t Lose Your Stuff This Memorial Day

By: Shad Bookout After a long winter and spring the unofficial start to summer has finally arrived. Memorial Day Weekend is here and thousands of apartment residents will be taking advantage of the three day weekend and enjoying the outdoors with friends and family. The time is perfect for them to borrow items that you can provide them to help enhance the experience. But for many apartment communities there is definitely a fear that anything you loan to a resident is destined to never return. However, those days are about to change. It seems-
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What Is The Most Important Amenity In Multi-Family Housing?

By: Shad Bookout Amenities are one of the most important aspects that have led to the success of many apartment communities. If there were no amenities, apartments would basically be a stack of boxes that people live in.  Good amenities turn an average apartment into a great apartment. The availability of swimming pools, fitness centers, sports options, package reception, and even upgraded living accommodations are some of the large variety of amenity options that help your apartment community stand out from your competition. But which amenity-
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New Walmart Shipping Service Ups Amazon Competition

By: Christine Blank Walmart’s announcement that it will start testing an unlimited free shipping service this summer is shaking up the shipping world. Because the new service will cost around half as much as Amazon Prime at $50 a year, Walmart is likely to garner a significant number of new online orders from Americans as well as snag many loyal Amazon Prime customers. "We've heard from customers that they want shipping that's predictable and they want it to be affordable," Ravi Jariwala, a spokesperson for Walmart, told USAToday. The-
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Has The Future of Delivery Already Been Delivered?

By: Shad Bookout As a kid, I loved watching the Jetsons on Saturday mornings. I was fascinated with a world where anything and everything that you needed or wanted was instantly available to you. Human innovation had led to a world where automation and innovation allowed for everything to be at your fingertips. But that future is not so far off. At least as far as package delivery is concerned, the future is now. Drones and Robots Replace Delivery Drivers It is rare to go a day reading the news without seeing an article about how drones and-
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How To Go Beyond The Stereotypical Resident Event

By: Shad Bookout Let’s get the bad news out of the way first. Your apartment residents are bored with the majority of your resident retention parties. But there are solutions to hosting better resident functions (but we will get to those later). Resident parties have become very generic in the apartment industry. Most communities have regular events tied to major annual holidays such as Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day, and Thanksgiving.  Other event may include a community garage sale, a “dive in” movie, or a “Bagel Breakfast”. The-
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Do Customers See You as a Farmer, a Fisherman or a Hunter?

By: Shad Bookout There are all different types of people in the world. As salespeople and marketers, it is up to you to determine the best way to leverage your brand to acquire the highest number of your targeted individuals. Many of the same marketing methods will work for a variety of different prospective customers. However, sometimes a more targeted approach is more pertinent. It is up to you to decide whether you should be a farmer, a fisher, or a hunter – as well as choose the tools you need along the way to achieve success. Are You-
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Why Gamification is Important to Businesses

By: Christine Blank Successful marketers are using gamification to engage their customers, particularly Millennials who prefer to interact with brands in fun ways. If you are not familiar, gamification is the process of adding games and the ability to earn rewards and points to everyday tasks. For example, Foursquare’s Swarm has become a very popular way for Millennials and others to “check in” at their favorite restaurants, retailers, apartment communities and other businesses. Once they identify that they are at the business, they earn-
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How To Reach Millennials And Grow Your Brand

By:Christine Blank Much is being written about the importance of Millennial customers, and that is because they represent a huge demographic group that is likely make up a healthy percentage of your resident or customer base. Born between 1982 and 1993, there are over 80 million Millennials – the largest demographic group in the U.S. The things that this group likes to do and purchase, and how they prefer to be marketed to, makes a huge economic impact on your business. Here are the top characteristics of Millennials: Millennials are frugal,-
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Press Release: PackageLog® by Logware™ Reaches 125,000 Active Users in Just 27 Months

Inbound Package Logging Software for Apartments and Businesses Sees Rapid Adoption Orlando, FL, April 08, 2015 --(PR.com)-- Logware™, provider of SaaS products PackageLog® and TrackItLog™ today announce that after just 27-months of public use, they have quickly surpassed the 100,000 Active User milestone and have exceeded 125,000 Active Users. PackageLog® was developed to reduce the time spent on inbound package delivery for apartments and businesses worldwide by sending customized email and SMS messages to the recipient. In 2011, it-
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How Amazon Dash Will Spike Package Delivery

By: Christine Blank We’re sure you already see too many boxes with Amazon logos flooding your community daily. Americans have gotten very used to ordering everything they need – from cars to groceries and everything in between – from the most popular online shopping site in the world. It is so convenient: they simply make their selections on Amazon.com, click “order”, and the products show up within two days to a week – sometimes even overnight. Now, expect to see an even bigger influx of Amazon packages with its new Dash service.-
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Having Fun Makes More Money

By: Shad Bookout Tomorrow is April Fools’ Day and employees everywhere will pause for a few minutes to celebrate a bit of fun and silliness with coworkers and friends. In some offices, even customers will get in on the action. However, there are still many offices that shy away from such fun-loving antics. These offices may be missing out on something important. Having fun at work is vital to your company’s success and if you look at the most notable brands in the U.S., making work fun for their employees is one thing they all have in common. Having-
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Can You Believe You Can Ship That?

By: Christine Blank There are some unbelievable items shipped through the U.S. mail every day – from cars to soccer balls to glitter. Yes, glitter. We are sure you have received a lot of unique packages at your community or business, but have you ever seen the following 10 weirdest items that can be shipped: Mail friends, enemies, or anyone else, a simple potato with stamps and an address via Mailaspud.com. Imagine the look on the recipient’s face when they receive a single potato with no return address! A car. As part of an Amazon-
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What Amazon’s Faster Delivery Means for Your Business

By: Christine Blank Get ready to see even more packages delivered to apartment communities and businesses across the United States. Already, FedEx, USPS, UPS and Amazon deliver a staggering 10 billion packages annually. Now, Amazon is shipping even more packages – sometimes within an hour – than it ever has before. After a successful test in New York City, Amazon recently said it will begin offering one-hour delivery service in Baltimore, Md., and Miami, Fla. For $7.99, Amazon ships any product in stock in under an hour to Amazon Prime-
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Are you married to…?

By: Shad Bookout To celebrate the nuptials of our client services manager, Chelsea Seidman, we have created this week’s blog in her honor. Throughout our time at our jobs, we all wind up becoming “married” in various ways. Often, we are at one community so long, that we become married to our job itself. Team members can be with us for a long enough period of time that they become as much a member of our family as our own spouses. Even customers, both new and old, can wind up being a focal point in the same way a loved one would be. It basically-
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Celebrating The Traditions Of Your Multi-Family Community

It’s was just St. Patrick’s Day and there is no better day to celebrate the traditions that make you unique in your marketplace. Whether you are a new community or one that has been in existence for awhile, it is often the traditions that you celebrate that help your residents remember you and want to tell others about their lives there. These traditions do not have to just be about holidays. They are also about all the different facts of the lifestyle that your residents lead and that your property management team enjoys. Traditions in Your-
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Overcome Multifamily Fear on Friday the 13th

Welcome to yet another Friday the 13th. It is amazing that many people still hold superstitions of fear that revolve around this holiday. However, it does serve as a great opportunity to recognize some of the challenges that fear creates within the multifamily industry. No, we are not talking about fear of apartments; instead, we are talking about some of the fears that we have as team members of the multifamily industry – as well as the fears our residents have of us. Fear of Rejection All of us have some level of fear of rejection; it is-
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Spring Is The Season For Borrowing

Spring is nearly here (March 20) and, as the ice and snow give way to flowers and butterflies, everyone seems to be emerging from the confines of their homes and offices to enjoy the thaw. As a result of the increased activity, more and more items will begin to disappear from offices and apartment community clubhouses. The cause of this is that people need things. Office workers need to borrow that file or a laptop to work from home. Maybe an event company has a variety of items on loan to a corporation in need. Even many apartment residents often-
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For Your Customer, The Time Is Now

Once again, the majority of the U.S. is prepared to spring ahead and enter Daylight Savings time. The days are getting longer and your customers are out in the marketplace in force. As they visit your business – and your competitors’ businesses – they will have certain expectations about their customer experience. How much of that experience is memorable centers around your customers’ perception of time.
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Impact The World Around You

Each and every day that you report to your job in the multi-family housing industry you set the stage to make an impact. Sure you are going to impact your community by leasing apartments. You will impact your family (and yourself) by the money that you are able to earn.  You may even impact co-workers and friends in many different ways. But these are all minor and not the center of the groundswell of importance that you bring to other every day.

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It’s the Little Things That Matter

 Mardi Gras time was this past Tuesday and once again, the crowd gathered to enjoy celebrations in The Big Easy and beyond. However, even as large as these parties are, it is the small things that drive the crowds who attend. They are there for the beads, the doubloons and even…a little piece of king cake. In fact, it is often the small things that make the biggest impact. Do you know the little things that are important to your apartment residents?

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PackageLog Helps Property Management Show The Love

Valentine Day is back and the celebrations are in effect. With love in the air, the time has never been better to set yourself apart and show your residents how much you care. Here are some tips you can use the show your residents how much you love them on Valentine’s Day and every day.

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And The Grammy For Craziest Resident Goes To…

The 57 Annual Grammy Awards are this Sunday and the world will pause for an evening to celebrate the best and brightest in music entertainment. The stylish red carpet filled with tuxes, gowns, and assorted other states of evening wear will lead into an awards show filled with musical acts that will discussed in offices across America for the following few days. But these are not the acts that cause a buzz in your apartment community office. Your residents often leave you wondering if they should receive the awards for Strangest Performance of All Time.

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Don’t Let Your Community Fall Victim to the Groundhog Day Curse

Today is Groundhog Day. It is the most epic of days that celebrates meteorological prognosticating rodents. The same experience that Bill Murray’s character in the movie centered around this are felt by the majority of apartment shoppers in today’s market. Once they decide the area of town in which they will reside, they are doomed to relive the same apartment tour at nearly each and every community they select for potential homes. But you do not have to have your prospective residents suffer the same fate and PackageLog is just one of the many tools you can use to be remarkable and remembered.

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Help Your Apartment Team Score Big For the Super Bowl

Let’s face it. The most important thing for the vast majority of your apartment residents is lifestyle. It is the lifestyle of living there that differentiates you from your competitors. Sure you may one or two unique amenities or the price may be just a touch lower, but people will always prefer to live where they are happiest. This means apartment community teams need to invest time and energy in providing residents the most memorable environment. Here is what that mean for the Super Bowl and other unique events.

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High Tech Solution for Common Apartment Community Desires

The growing needs, wants, and desires of today's apartment residents lead to new and ever evolving needs for property managements. These are three examples and how one piece of technology was able to solve these needs as well as help their apartment community take their marketing and resident retention to the next level. All thanks to TrackitLog.

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It Is Time To Invest More In Your Relationship Capital

Let’s face it. We work in a “people” business. Whether those people are coworkers, customers, or prospects, most of us deal with people as one of the main functions of our business. We may spend money on business growth, operational support, marketing / advertising and other key components of the business. But very little money (beyond normal salaries) is spent on the people portion of it. So, if people are so important, why do they get such a limited focus? Maybe it is time that you invest in some Relationship Capital. 

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Communicating To Your Invisible Residents

You would think that people who are spending an average of over 30 percent of their income with you would be more engaged. There are lots of reasons why many residents remain hidden in the shadows. The time has come to shine on light on the things that are important to them and how PackageLog can help.

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The Preiss Company Selects PackageLog® To Solve Their Onsite Package Management Needs Throughout The U.S.

The 3rd Largest (Private) Student Housing Company selects PackageLog® software to manage the skyrocketing influx of residents’ package deliveries at all communities.

Orlando, Florida, January 13, 2015 – Student housing operator The Preiss Company, in response to the ongoing increase of online shopping and inbound resident packages, has selected the Logware™ Software-as-a-Service product PackageLog® at all communities. PackageLog® is a best-in-class web-based application designed to manage high-volume package deliveries while building relationships with residents through automated alerts about their packages and for property announcements via email and SMS. 

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Package Notification: A Wonder of the Modern World

By: Shad Bookout Tourists travel the earth every year in a quest to view the wonders of the ancient world before they disappear. Whether it is the great pyramids of the Giza Plateau or the Moai Statues of Easter Island, thousands will marvel at their wonders. Almost always, the first question is “How did they do that?” Even with modern feats of engineering, such as The London Eye, One World Trade Center, The Eiffel Tower, and even the Golden Gate Bridge, people are stunned by the sheer scale of what it takes to create these marvels.But-
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Your Old Apartment Becomes New Again in 2015

Welcome to the New Year. As you look around your established apartment community, are you asking yourself the same questions as in 2014? How are you going to compete with the newly-constructed apartments popping up in your area? Maybe your apartments are a little dated or need some love in the New Year. But looks are not everything. So, to defeat your young upstart competitors, you just need to use the tools available to you in 2015.

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Who Are Your Holiday Residents?

The Holiday Season is in full effect and probably has taken your apartment community by storm. Residents coming in to pick up their packages have donned their ugly sweaters. Christmas lights dangle precariously from balcony railings. Holiday cheer fills that air and holiday music fills your office. Yes, the season is full of joy, but not every resident is so eager for the holiday to arrive. And some will leave you wondering if it will take a Miracle on 34thStreet for you to survive the holiday. Of course we are talking about residents like these:

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Black Friday; Cyber Monday Make Leasing Agents See Red

By: Shad Bookout That time of year is here again. It is holiday gift-giving season and online shopping is at an all-time high. Soon—if it hasn’t already—your office will start to flood with deliveries and packages for your residents. They may already be calling you, searching for the delivery status of their most recent orders. As the days go on and the holidays get closer, the mountain of packages grows and so does your stress level. The time has come to halt the holiday hassle and once again take control of your package predicament.Black-
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Thanksgiving Behind the Scenes with US Postal Solutions and PackageLog

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Thanksgiving is a special time to share with family and friends, celebrating our traditions and building new ones – as well as creating lasting memories. It is more than just an annual feast commemorating the pilgrims and Native Americans. It is more than post-turkey football. It is more than preparing for Black Friday and Cyber Monday shopping. It is about togetherness. I recently had the great privilege of interviewing the staff at US Postal Solution and PackageLog to learn about their views on this joyous holiday. Let’s pull the curtain back and discover how this group of energetic entrepreneurs celebrates Thanksgiving.

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Veterans Day Made More Special With PackageLog

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Happy Veteran's Day from PackageLog. Every day thousands of families celebrate their family members that have served in the US Armed Forces. Even thought the following story is fiction, it represents the heart felt pride we all have for the sacrifices made by our Nation's heroes. PackageLog is proud that our services can help touch lives. But most importantly, we say "Thank You" to the men and women that have fought to keep our country "The Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave."

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Package Management System Delivers a Little Furry Love

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Pets are a valued part of our lives. Many pets love living the apartment lifestyle. But can a Package Management System help make pets even happier in their multi-family homes. Yes! PackageLog can show you how receiving a notice that your package has been delivered not only make your pets happier, they make their owners happier too.. 

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The Scary Creatures Of Your Apartment Community

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It is Halloween once again: A time for trick or treats, costume parties, and spooky decorations. Also, it is a great time to take a moment and examine some of the creepy creatures that may inhabit your apartment community. So grab your pitchforks and torches as we step into the mist and face your worst nightmares.

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Innovation Is The Key To Your Business Success

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Apartment communities across the nation are still logging packages into a three-ring binder when the delivery person arrives. Delivery companies are still putting sticky notes on doors when the apartment community office does not accept packages. Leasing agents still stuff mailboxes with notices and drop flyers at doors. These are the same processes that have been around for 40 years. It seems kind of outdated to us.

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What Is The True Value That You Offer?

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Everyone loves a great deal. I have never met anyone who just prefers to pay more. But cost is not the only determining factors of whether something is a “value” or not. Value is attached to happiness and PackageLog knows a lot about the happiness items that people value most.

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How Unique Is Your Brand?

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Very few people have ever uttered the phrase, “I love generic, boring stuff”. For everyone else, finding something unique and special is a big deal. That is why we made PackageLog. Because you need a unique solution that helps you stand out in the marketplace.

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Are You Engaged With Your Customer

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Are you connected to your customer? Do they feel that you care? If you are engaged with them, your answer is most likely yes. It is important to communicate to your customer in a meaningful way. This is why we made PackageLog's messages customizable. That way you send more than just a package notification, you send something personal.

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Is Productivity An Obtainable Goal?

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The old adage that “time is money” has never been truer. In today’s inter-connected world, the fine line between work-life balance in getting ever thinner. PackageLog has a core mission to help you get back your productivity. 

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Will it Ship?

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From the large to the small; from the mundane to the strange and unusual; apartment residents order a lot of stuff. In fact, the number of thing that they can order it on the rise as is the number of things that they are acutally ordering. Are you ready for the increase of deliveries to show up at your office. What the heck did they order anyway?

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Beware the Onslaught of Holiday Packages – Starting Now

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It has begun. Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas decorations in nearly every store remind us that holiday shipping season has begun. Since online shopping for everything from clothes to groceries is such a part of most people’s daily lives, many have already started ordering gifts, clothing, décor and other items for this winter. Get ready, the packages are coming
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Is Your Team Driving You Mad As a Hatter?

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When you look around you at the team you work with, don’t you start to feel a little bit like Alice, after falling down the rabbit hole. Each team member is unique and each one of them brings their own special spin on what makes your office its own little Wonderland. Learn the people and the things that may be driving you mad in your office.

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It Is All About The Value

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With rent in many cases taking up 30 percent (sometimes even more) of a renter’s earnings, it is important for apartment communities to provide a great multi-family product in order to earn the business (or repeat business) of today’s multi-family consumer. Here are some ways you can help sell the value of your apartment community.

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The Packages are Coming

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“The packages are coming, the packages are coming!” you scream to yourself as you survey your apartment community’s mailroom. Yes, you are right. Your residents are receiving more packages than ever before!

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Use Your Marketing Force

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Sometimes in marketing it seems that you are fighting in an epic saga, in which forces of good and evil are trying to defeat each other. On one side, you have your product. You are passionate about your product and are driven to get information about it into the right hands. However, there are dark forces against you: the evils of distractions, road blocks, and competition hover like a sinister space station about to attack. But your marketing efforts can succeed! All you need to do is to summon the force within and team up with your marketing allies.

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No. 1 Budget Question: Where Is It?

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Budget season is upon us and, across the nation, business executives are hard at work crunching numbers and forecasting for 2015. As this year’s numbers are scrutinized, a common thread keeps popping up. Why was so much money allocated to the replacement of assets and how do we prevent this from ever happening again? 

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Apartments for the Generations

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It has once again become necessary to market to the different generations of apartment renters independently so that highest rents and the highest levels of resident satisfaction can be created for Baby Boomers, Gen-X, the Millennials, and for Gen-Z.

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Helping Your Apartment Community Score a Touchdown

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After a long hiatus, football has returned and, with it, a renewed sense of competition in many of our personal and professional lives. Fans convinced of the superiority of their team proudly display their tokens of support for the team they love. Workers are sneaking time during the day to update the status of their fantasy football teams. On game day, we cheer, we cry, and we watch hopefully as our teams enter the field of battle.  Much can be said about the similarities of our apartment communities to the football season.  Just as our favorite teams take to the field each week, so do our apartment community teams trying to win the day against their competitors. 

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Become the George Clooney of Apartments

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If you thought it was difficult to upgrade yourself, imagine the challenge of taking the same task on for a multiillion dollar apartment community. Sure these are most likely some glaring problems that you can immediately address, such as painting buildings and new A/C units. But there are lifestyle upgrades that are important too. Changes that make residents happier are just as important to address as the large capital improvement items. You can’t change your apartment community’s location, so you might as well invest in its future.

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A Brief History of Package Notification and Communication

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Communication has been an obsession of humanity since the days we were still living in caves and hunting mammoths. Think about how far we have come since the early cave drawing. Most of us now carry a computer in our pockets or purses that has more power than the Apollo moon missions. Much of communication came about in an attempt to help the movement of packages from one destination to another. PackageLog is proud to be an integral part of this growth in communications.

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Sowing the Seeds of Property Management Success

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In the high speed, high tech world that dominates our daily lives, we often lose sight of the simple things, and the humble beginnings that tie us all together. We get caught up in the ding of the email and the chime of text. The soft glow of the iPad, or Droid, or laptop screen becomes the light that our eyes are most accustomed to. It is easy to forget that the experiences we encounter everyday had to start small. For our customers, these opportunities for engagement begin very small indeed. It is as though our customers are the seeds, and we are the farmers challenged to cultivate a fresh crop of relationships so that we can harvest the bounty of future business.

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Keeping Up With Technology in Your Business

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We are friggin' busy, and having the right tech in place to help your team work well together and keep you in tune with your consumer will makes a world of difference. At the end of the day, business apps should be easy to use, productive, and have a great cost-to-value ratio.

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Guardians of the Apartments

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It is a classic tale in the folklore of every community on the planet. A band of misfits, drawn together by circumstance, must save the day from some evil force. Guardians of the Galaxy, which is sure to be a mega blockbuster, is built on this same premise. And it is not only this movie. Countless tales of this kind appear in movies as well as in TV, video games, and books. The other place these tales occur is in apartment community offices across the nation.  For oftentimes, it feels like you are in a constant struggle to keep your apartment safe from the evil forces that are threatening it prosperity.

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The Multi-Family Package Interruption

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A great quiet engulfs the leasing office. Finally! It has happened. It really has finally happened. You are running solo at your apartment community and the unthinkable has become reality! You are all caught up in the leasing office. All the calls have been returned. All the maintenance requests have been entered. All of the paperwork is complete. You thought this day would never come. You smile and give yourself a quick pat on the back. But then, as soon as go to grab a refill on your water, the peace and quiet is interrupted.The phone rings. It-
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Is Your Customer Service Memorable

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Great customer services may be more important today than at any time before. As a business the most important sales tool that you have is your reputation. In today’s high tech world the focal point for these opinions is the online review. The more people like you, the more likely new customers will be approaching your doors. It occurs in property management the same as in every other business.

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Solving the Case of the Missing Stuff

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You do not have to be Sherlock Holmes to find a solution to missing items in your office. Many of these were loaned and never returned. We asked offices across the country to tell us what it was that they regularly found missing. These are the five items that were most often loaned out never to be seen again:

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The World Cup of Apartment Living

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Just like each soccer team brings its talents to the field for each and every game, apartment communities bring their unique customer service skills to each and every resident. Each position on a soccer team specializes in certain tasks to create the best competitive advantage during a soccer match. So too, the property management teams at each community leverage their skills to help score a goal with customer service to each and every resident.

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Why Leasing Agents Hate Resident Packages

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There are lots of things that drive leasing teams nuts, packages for residents being one of them. Most of these tie back to residents. Every day a variety of situations occur that can make even the most season apartment industry veteran feel like they should be shipped out to the funny farm. Prospective residents, current resident, managers, team members, and suppliers all combine to contribute to the madness. All of these challenges create roadblocks the costs time, energy, and sometimes even money. But there are solutions to these challenges so you can get back to leasing and get back to making money. Here are a few examples and our recommended solutions.

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What We Learned at the 2014 NAA Education Conference and Exposition

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As the dust settles from the 2014 NAA Education Conference and Expo, we are reflecting on all of the amazing moments that occurred during our time in Denver. From start to finish, this was an epic conference. A record number of attendees covered the halls of the Colorado Convention Center. Scrambling from educational seminars, to the expo floor, to the various events held throughout, each and every attendee left with something amazing.

Here are the top things that the PackageLog team learned during the NAA Education Conference and Expo

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Who are Your Apartment Community’s Customers?

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Whether you are an apartment manager, a leasing agent, a maintenance tech, or an apartment executive, knowing your customer is one of the most impactful ways to control your business. Here are three area to consider the evolution on who your apartment communities customer really is.

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How Tracking Asset Software Made A Child Smile

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Asset Tracking Software gives your apartment community the ability to loan anything to your customers. These items are monitored in the TrackItLog system which automatically sends a notification when the item is due to be returned. This is a story of how an apartment community made a little girl and her grandpa very happy using this system.

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Are You Losing Apartment Amenities & Equipment?

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Another item has been loaned to a resident only to never be seen or heard from again. The problem of residents not returning items they have borrowed can even reach epidemic proportions. It is like some mysterious force possesses your apartment residents. But those days are now over thanks to TrackitLog.

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Happy Memorial Day from PackageLog

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The men and women who serve here work tirelessly to better themselves and our military to ensure that future generations will have the opportunity to enjoy the same freedoms we value today. When done with their daily jobs, many return to their families in apartments - both on base and outside of its boundaries.

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Summer Vacation at Your Apartment Community

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Summer is finally here. As the kids finish their last few days of school, their thoughts turn to summer camps, swimming pools, and summer vacation. College students are returning from a busy semester. Adults are spending their work days daydreaming of the places they wish they could spend their summer. Every day this summer, your apartment community can provide residents with a sense of vacation. They don’t even need to leave home, because summer vacation is right there on their doorstep.

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Don't Let Package Management Bug Your Apartment Team

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Ants are some of the most efficient and effective creatures in the animal kingdom. They work tirelessly to grow their community and provide for the betterment of all the colony’s residents. Ants have evolved to have specialized individuals working to perform the tasks that make their communities succeed. Only by being the best at their individual task and by working as a cohesive team, can the community succeed. Isn’t this same fact true when it comes to our apartment communities?

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Happy Mother’s Day from PackageLog

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This weekend is all about celebrating moms. At apartment communities across the nation, parties will be had, gifts will be delivered, and hugs will be shared as we pause for a moment to celebrate Mother’s Day. What is that your community is doing to make this yearly event special for your residents who are moms? PackageLog is here to help you make this Mother’s Day the most memorable one ever.

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At AIM Conference, Attendees Learn New School Ways to Deliver an Old School Message

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This week, many of the most brilliant minds in our industry are descending on Hunting Beach, CA for the annual AIM (Apartment Internet Marketing) Conference. They will be discussing all of the latest and greatest marketing trends for the multi-family industry. They will talk about websites, social media, mobile technology, and advertising. All of these items are important to the growth of our industry. But one of the most power ways to promote your apartment community is much lower tech and may be the most vital item to achieve success. It is all about the power of conversation.

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Why Your Apartment Residents Leave

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One of the most rewarding things about working in the multi-family housing industry is our ability to help people have a home. Not to many years ago, it was only people who could not afford – or could not qualify – for a house that sought the apartment lifestyle. However, over time, apartments have blossomed into a desirable place for many people to live. Where else can you have the amenities, benefits of location, and since of community that apartment living offers?

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Apartment Leasing Tips - Mastering the Resident Tour

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Shopping for an apartment sucks. Any way you look at it, whether you are moving across town or across country, the process of finding an apartment and moving in takes a lot of time, effort, and energy.  

To help sign prospective residents, take a moment and look at the process that the potential resident you are touring is going through... 

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PackageLog Integrates with Entrata Core Property Management by Property Solutions

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PackageLog - Online Inbound Package Logging Software with Automated Alerts via SMS & Email - Announces Successful Deployment of Automated Electronic Data Interface with Property Solutions' Entrata

Orlando, FL, March 20, 2014 – PackageLog LLC, a US Postal Solutions Company and the most comprehensive package management and resident retention tool on the market, today announced successful deployment of automated electronic data interface with Property Solutions' Entrata, the industry's first single, open property management software platform. This interface provides an automated exchange of resident information to facilitate accurate and consistent package management and resident communications.

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6 Ways Multifamily Managers Improve Their Workload

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We live in a fast paced world where everything needs to be done yesterday. Its all very exciting, but can make for a frustrating and seemingly unproductive day when there is so much to be done. We all have a ton of work on our desks and managing that workload can be daunting at times. There are a few things that can be done to ensure you keep pace with the work itself while keeping your sanity.  Let go of the stress, forgive yourself for falling behind, and try these suggestions.

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5 Ways To Love Your Residents

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We all know that retaining good residents is much more valuable than spending the time and money required to attract new residents. As a result, it is important for you to show your residents you truly appreciate their business every day and especially on special holidays, like Valentine's Day.

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6 New Years Resolutions for Multifamily Property Managers

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What we normally do...

Its that time of year when we all reflect on our experiences of the last year and look forward to what may come. In this moment most of us take a hard look at ourselves and resolve to make a resolution to improve in one way or another in our personal lives. This is a great practice and helps each of us to aspire to be better in our future...

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Can We Really Afford to Give?

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During the holidays its important to remember that no matter how challenging things are at the office, regardless of the workload you have at your desk, the only thing that really matters is... Family. Family is this new millennia comes in all shapes and sizes... There's your work family, your close friends family, your community family, but none are quite as 

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Next Week's Packages Are Going To Be Insane!

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The nightmare before Christmas!

UPS, FedEx, and the Post Office all agree that December 16th - December 20th is going to have the highest volume of packages ever seen. Packages have been on the rise for the last 5 years at a steady pace of around 13% and its only going to continue to get worse as online purchasing continues its momentum. The question is, what can you do? Packages in general are a pain in the neck throughout the rest of the year, let alone during the holidays. 

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Rooted In The Customer Experience

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Remember your roots

When you have been in the industry as long as we have, its important to remember your roots. Often times companies grow to heights they never expected, having started from a small team of passionate individuals to an army of employees. This kind of growth is great and leads to opportunities to work with big companies and big ideas... Just don't forget where you came from.  

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Brainstorm Of The Century

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Not another conference...

There are all manner of conferences and trade shows that exist in the multifamily industry from regional shows, national shows, to international ones as well; each with their unique industry focus and approach. As of late, it seems as though most follow a pretty standard format with a networking mixer, education sessions throughout the conference, and a trade show component mixed in for exhibitors to share their wares and service options. 

Fun conference, serious difference...

Last week, however, we had the pleasure of attending the MultifamilyPro Brainstorming Session in Las Vegas, NV.

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Packages: The Scariest Part of the Holidays

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BOO! 

With Halloween just days away, the scariest part of your month has nothing to do with monsters or the boogie man... Its the influx of packages coming in as your residents prepare for trick-or-treating, Halloween parties, and costume contests. What's even scarier? This is just the beginning... We are looking square down the barrel of the holiday season with packages going from a lot to "OH, MY...!" 

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The ROI Budget For Staff Retention

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Staff Retention is Cheaper

According to a February 2012 Dun and Bradstreet Business Research article, staff turnover can be quite costly – in the realm of 150% of the salary to replace that employee. When one of your staff leaves, they take with them all of the knowledge they learned while in the company, the ins and outs of the day-to-day workload, the nuance that comes with understanding each individual property and residents, and the opportunity to grow someone from within that understands company culture and furthers its objectives. This intimate knowledge and understanding will need to be retaught and require time to institute with a new staff member.

Company Culture Rules

Investing in your staff develops a culture that shares the common practices of the company. Company culture is important to morale, which translates directly to a happy team and higher staff retention. There is a direct correlation between the …
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Technology Budget Strategy

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Your Technology Budget

How are you using your technology budget? For those that have a budget line item for technology you are ahead of the curve, but don’t get too comfortable because its always catching up with you. Technology is an ever evolving industry both on the hardware and software side of things, and its important to keep a pulse on what is going to make a real impact in the office and on property. We can easily assume that most, if not all property managers use some kind of management software for their property. There are a number of options out there like YardiOneSitProperty SolutionsMRI, and many more, each with their respective strengths. What is not always known is that there are software solutions that address specific needs like collections, resident screenings, inbound package tracking, utility billing, and many more. Why should …

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4 Cost-Saving Budgeting Strategies

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Looney about budgeting strategies

Its rabbit season… Its duck season… Rabbit season… Duck season… And as you look down the barrel of the proverbial shotgun, reality settles in and its even worse than Bugs or Daffy could have imagined! ITS BUDGET SEASON!!! Typically one of the most hectic times of the year, because not only are you ensuring that your property is stellar, residents are happy, expenses are down, NOI is up, and your staff is productive, you will need to dedicate a decent amount time to project your budget for next year. Its not like that too difficult, right? You just need to increase NOI, find savings where none exist, identify the line items for improvement (and actually get the money approved for them), and this is all after you already did an amazing job of doing that last year. So, how do you develop your amazing budgeting strategies …

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Easiest Trick to Gain and Retain Residents

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Amazing amenities will only go so far to retain residents

If you want to retain residents you’re going to need more than a nice pool. My good friend Sarah was unhappy living in her apartment community and decided that she was not going to renew her lease. My first thought was that she was trying to down-size, because she lives is a gorgeous apartment community with lots of amenities. However, when I asked why she would leave such a nice place her answer was surprising, “I don’t feel at home here…” she said. Every time she called or passed by the front office for something, she felt like she was imposing or creating an inconvenience on the staff. They were not specifically rude, they just didn’t seem happy to be there, “It was depressing” she mentioned. My first reaction was to say that it seemed a bit extreme to leave …

 

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PIN or Signature, Which is More Secure?

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The Big Difference Lies in Fraud Losses

 

The debate between signature verification and PIN verification has been ongoing for some time. Debit card providers have been split about which is more secure, but that debate is beginning to lean heavily on the side of the Personal Identification Number or PIN verification. According to digitaltransactions.net, “the big difference lies in fraud losses. These losses were more than eight times greater in 2011 on signature-debit volume than on PIN debit, according to Pulse studies, or 8.06 basis points of volume compared to 0.99. Also, signature-debit fraud rose from 7.5 basis points in 2010, while PIN fraud declined from 1.26 basis points. ‘There’s a better risk profile [with PIN debit],’ says Sievert. ‘Issuers don’t experience as much fraud.’”

3000 Year Old Tradition

 

This is a pretty big deal considering that signatures have been traced back 3000 years to the Sumerians as a …

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Inventory: Track It, Its Easy

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Managing Your Inventory

Keeping track of your inventory and property assets can be a highly time-consuming and tedious task for you and your team, especially without a management tool. Inaccurate inventory can be problematic and costly. Not only because of unanticipated expenses for repair and replacement, but also the time spent doing the inventory count in the first place. If you are like most businesses, inaccuracy and loss of assets translates to delays and customer dissatisfaction. Between the loss of business and annual write-offs for inventory losses, it only makes sense to find a better way.

Accessing Asset Data

Access to your inventory data like its condition, its status, and who has possession of it at a glance offers the opportunity for your entire team to be on the same page. Knowing when an asset needs to be serviced lengthens the life of that asset and saves you money over …

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Changing the Landscape of Your Budget

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Your Green Space is Expensive

Landscaping is one of the most impactful elements to your property. This is because its the first thing prospects see when they arrive, so if you have the ability to integrate a beautiful landscape, you do it. All of these plants, trees, and bushes make your property look inviting and organically compliment the lines of your building’s architecture. The only caveat is the expense of maintaining this lush green beautifully manicured green space. There is the amount of water needed to keep everything from dying. How often do pour gallons water into the ground through those sprinklers? Sprinklers typically range from 3-5 gallons per hour, times the number of sprinklers, and the weekly watering schedule, which makes for a pretty hefty water bill. In addition, this landscape needs to be trimmed, weeded, pruned, treated, and cut on a regular basis. The cost to maintain your …

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What Is Your Utilities Budget Strategy?

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Is there money in your utilities budget?

Did you know utility costs can vary from year to year based on a number of factors including rates, usage, regulations, and more. It is not uncommon for the utility expenses of a property to be inaccurate based on the current circumstances. Many properties have saved tens of thousands, and in some cases hundreds of thousands of dollars after using a utility auditor. What makes pursuing this option really sweet is that there are many utility auditors that work on a contingency fee basis. Exactly… they only get paid if they find you savings! How is that for motivation to find you extra money in your utilities line item? “Wow” is what I say.

Theoretically, you could do this yourself, but its actually quite complicated and as a property manager you probably don’t have the time it would take to go through the …

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Packages, Accountability, and Your Corporate Office

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Package Tracking Software for Corporate Offices

Tracking packages is pretty common in student housing and multifamily, but it also can be useful in a corporate office. Often organizations will receive a high volume of packages for employees and not have a package tracking software to log and manage those inbound packages. Packages get lost, misplaced, given to the wrong person, or given to an assistant without any record of the transaction.

Package History Rules

Having inbound package tracking software in place will provide accountability for all staff handling packages and confirmation of all transaction that occur in relation to that package. PackageLog, for example, keeps a full history of all packages that have been logged in at your corporate office. This capability allows you to easily access any information relating to a package or employees who have received packages.…

 

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Introducing TrackItLog… the Track “Anything” Software

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Ever lend out a hand-truck to a resident or an access key to a vendor? With USPSI Online’s introduction of TrackItLog you can keep a tally of who has what and it will let them know to return it when it’s due. Using the technology developed for PackageLog, an innovation in inbound package management, USPSI Online has created a “track anything” software for anyone who gives the responsibility of a thing to someone else.

How is this useful?

Due to TrackItLog’s ability to keep track of anything for any period of time, this can be specifically useful in managing keys that go out vendors, appliances assigned to apartments, movies or books loaned to residents, or anything else that you own that is placed in the care of another person.

Like PackageLog, TrackItLog is online and responsive which means it works on any device (desktop, tablet, mobile, etc.) that

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PackageLog Views Competition as a Good Thing!

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ACUHO-i and NAA

And we’re back… after our Cross-Country Tour including trade shows in Minneapolis, MN and San Diego, CA and visits to Los Angeles and surrounding cities, we are just now settling back into the swing of things. Just in time as we prepare for new move-ins in the Student Housing sector and introduceTrackItLog, the “Track Anything Software” to the multifamily market. Our experience at ACUHO-i in Minneapolis was as expected with inquiries about our full-service options and software solutions for on-campus. The city is quite a site to see in June and we are happy to have made our way to the Twin Cities.

Competition is Good for Business

We set-up an island booth with our parent company US Postal Solutions and had a great view of the exhibit hall floor. From our booth location we were able to see our competitors Notifii and EZTrackIt

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Using an Operational Efficiency Tool for Resident Retention

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Which tool do I choose?

There are hundreds, even thousands of software tools to make life easier managing a property, but none have integrated a strong resident retention component the way PackageLog has. PackageLog is an amazing tool developed to significantly cut the amount of time spent managing packages for residents. A US Postal Solutionstudy shows that Millennials aka “Echo Boomers” (defined as individuals between the ages of 16 – 35) receive an average of 21 packages per year. Assuming a small portfolio of 5 properties, each with 250 units, and an average of 1 Millennial per unit can see a savings of over $19,000 in staff time every year. By speeding the logging and delivery process, automating alerts and notifications, andresponsive design (having flexibility across multiple devices), PackageLog makes efficiency its business.

How does this work toward resident retention?

Remember the example of the 5

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SaaS Security is Beating its Misconceptions

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Are SaaS security protocols enough?

Security is major concern when considering a SaaS efficiency tools likePackageLog, an inbound package management software. There are a few misconceptions that make decision makers nervous whenever there is a discussion about off-site technology solutions. Following conventional wisdom will unfortunately leave businesses behind the curve when it comes to technology solutions since the progression of technology continues to defy convention faster and faster every day. That said, lets discuss a some misconceptions that should be addressed before deciding on a software solution.

Misconception #1

On-site is more secure: It may seem like this is the case, but this is based on a natural tendency to believe its more secure because you can see it. However, SaaS solutions like PackageLog typically have more strict security protocols than on-site systems. Why? Because of its very nature, SaaS is intrinsically concerned about security for the

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Developing Loyalty and Community with Residents

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Create loyalty and community

Developing loyalty from residents can be challenging to say the least. There are a number of elements that come into play when trying to foster great relations with your residents. Finding creative ways to build community amongst residents is key to establishing loyalty and long lasting relationships. Multifamily homes are epicenters of community and economic development if managed well. Think about it, its where everyone who might spend money to build the community lives, so why not take advantage of that position by fostering the community those residents are seeking.

Discount cards

Create a discount card in partnership with local business – This is a great way to create an amenity out of nothing, and its so easy to manage. Now, it will take a little leg work at the beginning, but will be worth your while in the long run.

  1. Go out and talk to
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Show Your Awesome Residents Your Appreciation

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What about the good ones?

Showing appreciation is the best resident retention tool you have in your arsenal. We all know that every property has there share of bad residents, and this sometimes becomes the focus of how many property manager deal with their residents. However, because the good residents that pay on-time, are considerate of their neighbors, and take good care of their space do not create problems, they are often neglected. Its important for properties to show appreciation for those residents that do good by them, since keeping good residents are worth their weight in gold.  No troubles, on-time payments, and they take care if the place… Why not do something to keep them?

Appreciation is easy

Most of it breaks down to just being great at what you already do best.

  1. Promptly attend to resident concerns – This is kind of a big deal. If residents feel like
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60% of Computing Will Be in the Cloud by 2014

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Keeping up

Keeping up with the latest technology can be a challenge with new tech coming out as soon as the latest and greatest was just released. For gadgets and gizmos like phones, tablets, and other hardware its not likely to get any better any time soon. However, how we manage information technology is a slightly different animal. The most common form of information management today uses either your computer, a server, or both, but cloud computing is completely changing the landscape. Why?

5 Advantages

<a href=”http://packagelog.com/what-is-the-cloud-and-how-can-it-improve-my-business/”>Cloud computing</a> allows for information to be saved on a server, or rather multiple servers that exist online. The advantages to this model are revolutionizing our use of information, by:

  1. Allowing access to information from any device with an internet connection, which offers information access from mobile devices as well as typical computer stations.
  2. Giving businesses the opportunity to remove location limitations, allowing for

 

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5 Great Ancillary Income Opportunities Your Property Should Implement

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Generating additional revenue is nice

Ancillary income is quickly becoming the Midas Touch for many multifamily and student housing properties. The economy has made it increasingly difficult to raise rents for many properties and tax increases have outweighed reasonable rent increases in others. In a stroke of brilliance ancillary income makes its debut as the star of the show.

5 Ancillary Income Options

There are some standards all property managers should use including:

  1. Late Rent Fee – while this should be a flat rate, some suggest that the rate should be calculated at around 8-10% of the average rent.
  2. Trash Fee – $5 – $9 per month seems to be the threshold for most multifamily properties and is one of the additional charges that have the least resistance from residents
  3. NSF Fee – This is standard practice across most industries yielding $35 – $50 per incident. Following this up with
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How Concierge Service Can Trump Built-in Amenities

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Concierge service in multifamily and student housing is on the rise, making service one of the top priorities for properties across the board. Creating reasons for residents to stay and recommend others to move-in can be challenging. Your property may not have the built-in amenities of other properties or perhaps your budget limits your capability to provide those big ticket upgrades like stainless steel appliances or ceramic tile. While these elements are appealing to many residents and prospects, at the end of the day most don’t remember the amenities over time, they remember their experience.

Round 1: Amenities

High-end and newly built properties have the distinct advantage of being built to accommodate the latest trends. Water features in the lobby or entryway to inspire a sense of calm as residents and prospects enter, fitness center, and recreation spaces for those active residents, and other trendy amenities that are in-vogue make a very

 

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Inbound Package Management Should Be Easy

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Are you seeing the trend?

If you haven’t already noticed, inbound package management from UPS, FedEx, and other delivery services is quickly become the bane of every property manager’s existence. Its time consuming, requires lots of staff involvement, makes properties liable for delivered packages, etc., but of course, if you are reading this blog, you already knew that. What you may not know is that as of 2012 the average college student receives 21 packages per year, according to a US Postal Solutions study. Forrester Research predicts that online shopping will increase by 62% by 2016 – UPS, FedEx, and USPS all project an increase in package deliveries by over 13% every year through 2016. All of which translates to a nightmare scenario, if you’re not prepared for that influx of packages.

Inbound package management options:

  • Improve the manual process – evaluate your current system and look for ways to
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Living in the Efficient Future…Today.

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Easier, faster, better… in an efficient future

Technology’s primary purpose is to make life easier, faster, better… Whether that’s through communication, organization, documentation, process, or all of the above we have used technology to change the way the world works from the micro to the macro level. The Cloudhas transformed the way we see everything, allowing for seamless communication from anywhere on earth to the social media revolution and now cloud-based software that improve efficiency and reach. Short of flying cars, this is the future and if you’re going to stay relevant you will have to make use of the latest technology.

Cloud computing and Software-as-a-Service(SaaS) are the latest in the world of technology and the Multifamily and Student Housing industries are no stranger to this shift. Property management tools are quickly adopting the SaaS model in favor of the traditional on-site enterprise model because of the advantages

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Keep Calm and Lease On – Efficiency Tools

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Easier, faster, better…

Technology’s primary purpose is to make life easier, faster, better… Whether that’s throughcommunication, organization, documentation, process, or all of the above we have used technology to change the way the world works from the macro to the micro. The cloud has transformed the way we see everything, allowing for seamless communication from anywhere on earth, to the social media revolution, and now responsive, cloud-based software that improves efficiency and reach.

Out with the old, in with the new

Short of flying cars, this is the future we’ve been talking about for decades and if you’re going to stay relevant you will have to make use of the latest technology. Cloud computing and Software-as-a-Service(SaaS) are the latest in the world of technology and the Multifamily and Student Housing industries are no stranger to this shift. Property management tools are quickly adopting the SaaS model

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Strategies for Your Interactions at Trade Shows

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Interactions… Attendance is not enough

Developing strategic interactions with colleagues and vendors will open up a waterfall of opportunities. After attending both the National Association of Apartments (NAA) Student Housing Conference in Las Vegas, NV and South Eastern Association of Housing Officers (SEAHO) Conference in Atlanta, GA, it was clear that simply attending these conferences is not enough. Each brings a plethora of workshops, discussion panels, and of course, vendors on the trade show floor.

I don’t want to be sold to…

It’s easy to see why the workshops and panels are worth attending, by why waste your time visiting the trade show floor? All you’re going t see is a bunch of vendors trying to sell you something, right? Perhaps, but to put things into perspective, these vendors are the most specific to our industry with some of the latest technology and service options you

 

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Package Management System for the Office

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ystems make for great efficiency

Create a management system for those packages coming into your office. Dealing with the ever increasing number of packages that arrive for your residents continues to be a thorn in ResLife and Property Managers everywhere. Its not surprising considering that UPS, FedEx, and the Postal Service are all reporting an increase in package delivery volume of 12%-14% and projected to exponentially increase moving forward. That said, what can be done to ensure your office is not completely overwhelmed with managing this task? We would imagine you have things like actually managing your property and resident activities that are a bit more pressing.

An easy to follow system will save you time, effort, and frustration. Our first suggestion is to find a great package management software like PackageLog to digitize and automate as much of the process as possible, like maintaining a log, package history, and

 

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Unique Amenities Using Your Property and the Cloud for Resident Retention

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Unique amenities

Unique amenities are the name of the game for both traditional multifamily and student housing for resident retention. Some properties have the luxury of being built with a plethora of amenities, leaving those without trying to find other ways to compete. Fortunately, there’s hope because there are some creative ways to develop your properties with amenities you didn’t realize we’re possible.

Resources

There are a couple of things are already accessible, it’s just a question of finding the best use for those resources. Two things every property has is one, their physical property and two, the infinite space of the Cloud (you know, that “new” thing that everyone used to call the Internet). That said, these two basic elements will be our focus for today.

Your property

As an example, just because you don’t have a fitness center built into your property, doesn’t mean you can’t have fitness

 

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Property Management Efficiency… Do You Have It?

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Balancing Property Management Efficiency

Is your property running efficiently? Efficiency makes the difference between running a property and being a slave to it. The current economic climate has property management firms across the globe reviewing how to increase productivity and cut costs. Unfortunately, there is such a thing as too much of a good thing. Its important to remember that some costs have long-term benefit and in some cases can be expenditures that will produce an immediate visible return.

Be cautious…

Be cautious not to cut the very resources that can improve efficiency for your management infrastructure.

  1. Make sure the systems you have in place are the most effective for your circumstances. An audit of your process (like you audit of your finances) can make a substantial difference. You could be shoveling money out the front door and not even realize it.
  2. Capitalize on your star personnel. Understanding which employees have
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Package Delivery Volume is Staggering

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Package delivery volume up 14%

Package delivery volume is on the rise and not expected to slow through 2016. As part of an announcement to change their mail delivery schedule, the Postal Service reported a 14% increase in package volume since 2010. As a matter of fact, while the Postal Service is cutting its mail service from six days to five, they have opted to keep a six-day delivery schedule for packages due to the current and anticipated package delivery volume. UPS and FedEx recently released similar figures showing a 14% increase across the board in package volume both internationally and across the United States. Projections through 2016 from multiple sources are expected to rise by 7% per year, so the shear volume of packages that will translate to is staggering.

How to contend with packages

US Postal Solutions has already begun to implement PackageLog, a cloud-hosted package management

 

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Innovative Communication is Key to Resident Retention Strategy

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Communication is critical in developing your resident retention strategy, but can be a daunting task as residents can be difficult to reach, unwilling to share best modes of communication, or just generally ignore attempts at such efforts. Including a regiment of techniques to interact with residents combined with innovation and creativity will ensure the best possible results for clear lines of communication for both resident retention as well as feedback. This article will discuss some basic techniques and tools that can assist with your resident retention strategy.

Be Social

Creating social gatherings can be a great tool to cultivate resident relations, so consider things like barbecues, pool parties, and other similar gatherings. These will offer you direct positive interaction with residents that will open the door to relationship building and feedback about property operations. This is also a great time to introduce new developments on property that will positively impact

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Talk to My Agent… Package Delivery Dilemma

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I’m Agent 007. Here to pick up a package.

Someone comes into the office claiming to be “agent” of one of your Recipients, only there are no notes and this person is picking up for a Recipient who you know has done this before. To make things even more challenging, the Recipient has been difficult in the past and the last thing your already busy office needs is more drama. The dilemma ensues… If you give this person the package, you risk the Recipient coming in and advising the office that they never authorized this person and they should not have been allowed to pick up their package. On the other hand, if you refuse to give up the package, then you risk the Recipient coming into the office complaining about why their friend/roommate was refused a package they desperately needed. Most properties just make it a policy to

 

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Electronic Proof of Delivery in a Package Tracking Software

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Electronic Proof of Delivery

As consumers, we sign for things all of the time on electronic proof of delivery style devices used by many package tracking software systems. As a matter of fact, I just signed for a few FedEx packages yesterday on an electronic signature pad. Electronic signatures are used to identify that a person who claims to have written a message is the one who wrote it , not to be confused with digital signatures, which are encrypted for security purposes and typically used for conducting business in this age of technology. A digital signature is great for securely confirming a general business transaction and an electronic signature is great for confirming that someone at sometime received goods or services. However, neither are designed nor can confirm that the individual signing is who they say they are (unlike an ink signature on paper), as far as the law is

 

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Package Tracking System Terminology – Facilities (Databases)

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Package Tracking System Terminology Basics

There are a few terms that can be confusing when searching for the right inbound package tracking system, namely Databases (we like to call them Facilities), Recipients, and Users. In a package tracking system like PackageLog, these 3 basic componentsare elements that will allow the software to function properly. To make it easy to understand, we will discuss each separately across multiple posts and then tie them together at the end.

Facilities (Databases)

Facilities are the locations where packages are received. If you only have one receiving location like the front desk, then you would simply put “Front Desk” or “Your Business” as the name of the Facility. However, this term is a bit flexible – for example, the front desk at the main entrance of the building and the loading dock at the back of the building could represent two separate Facilities.

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Responsive Design in a Package Tracking System

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What exactly is responsive design?

Responsive design relates to the visual appearance of software or websites regardless of platform or device. The basic principle is that a website or software with a responsive design is developed once to intelligently adapt to all devices and platforms. This design concept optimizes things like screen space, device capability, touch-screen, and other varying features found on various devices. PackageLog is a package management software (integratedpackage tracking system) that has a responsive design.

Why is this important?

According to Google, 90% of people use multiple screens sequentially, whether for browsing the internet, shopping online, managing finances, or planning vacations. Businesses, like PackageLog are capitalizing on this technology to make working mobile a reality. Using apackage management software to track packages via any device including mobile increases efficiency and improves the user experience.

PackageLog’s Responsive Design

Our software development team works diligently

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Outbound vs Inbound Package Tracking System

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The Scenario

UPS just left a package with their package tracking system information in your central receiving office, but it still needs to travel three blocks to the other side of campus to a specific department on the 4th floor. According to UPS, its delivered… but its really only mostly delivered. How can you track it for the rest of those 3 blocks, 4 floors, and specific department it needs to be delivered to? Unfortunately, with an outbound package tracking system, you can’t.

The Outbound Package Tracking System

UPS and other shippers like FedEx and DHL use an outbound package tracking systems that are designed more for the sender than receiver (especially as it relates to large single-point delivery properties).  Of course, the system is useful for both sender and receiver, and as far as package tracking systems go, what they use is pretty sophisticated. Anyone who has sent or

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Flexibility of Cloud Computing and Its Impact To Business

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Flexibility Makes A Difference

So far, we have discussed what is the cloud, how is can be cost-beneficial, and ease of implementation. The last item I would like to cover for this series is flexibility and we’ll wrap it up.

99% Uptime Should Be Normal

Many organizations have multiple locations, but require file sharing to be able to access the same data. Working on the cloud allows for this capability without having to setup your own file server, which can be costly. Working on the cloud, allows you the advantages of an IT department, without the headache. Now George from Dallas can access the software Mary-Ann from operations uses in Atlanta, seamlessly. Any quality cloud-hosted service will only use highly secure cloud servers with 99% uptime or better to ensure peak productivity. Having to ensure that kind of security and uptime internally can get expensive, fast.…

 

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Increase Productivity Using The Cloud Without Having To Download or Install Any Software

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Streamline

Streamlining the work environment is one of the essential elements in increasing productivity. Using a cloud computing model in your business will increase productivity, by allowing you to focus on the development of your business. This option can bog down development with technology and compatibility issues as they relate to individual workstations. It makes it easier to transition to newer platforms like the next new Microsoft or Apple operating systems. You can also allow for more creative use of staff by allowing them to work remotely or use mobile devices to give them more flexibility, all of which translates to higher productivity.

Say No to Downloads and Installs

One of the biggest issues with traditional software is the need to download and install it on all company devices. Using the Microsoft Office suite as an example as we did in “Cost-Benefit of Cloud Computing (SaaS) and Why 

 

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Cost-Benefit of Cloud Computing (SaaS) and Why I Should Consider It For My Business

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Convention Has a Diminishing Return

The cost-benefit to purchasing software continues to diminish as cloud computing becomes more prevalent. If you have ever purchased software to download and install onto your computer, you know that the upfront cost for even a small business can be quite hefty. Microsoft Office is a great example of traditional software that is installed onto a single or multiple machines (computers). Cloud-based versions of their software does exist, but most are familiar with their traditional model of paying per machine (or license) in order to use the software. If you have a lot of machines, this can get quite expensive quickly and you will need to handle updates and upgrades on your own. This is not much of an issue if you don’t mind the expense of keeping your own hardware and professional IT staff, but when you need to trim down and minimize your

 

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What is the “Cloud” and How Can It Improve My Business?

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Do to the important nature of this topic, I have decided to make this a 4-part series. Each part will focus on a different element of “Cloud Computing,” which will include this introduction, cost-benefits, implementation, and flexibility.

What is the “Cloud”?

If you spend anytime at all online you have probably heard of the “Cloud” or “Cloud-Computing” or “Cloud-Based” software similar to PackageLog (a package tracking software), but what does all of that mean. Colleagues discuss how great it is and articles tout its many benefits including cost reduction and increased efficiency, but what are they all talking about? Is it some mystical place in the sky where all of our treasures are stored? Where we can get access to our magical tools, like Thor’s Hammer or Zeus’s Lightning Bolt? Well… That’s exactly what it is, only our treasures are files and our magical tools, software. …

 

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Challenge Accepted

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Managing Mail and Package Delivery

Mail management is a challenge to say the least, and anything that can be done to assist with the processing of mail will inevitably make life for those responsible for this daunting task a whole lot easier. Obviously, creating an effective package management system helps to streamline tasks and speed up the process, but in the age of information technology the main question that pops to mind is… “Is there an App for that?” and the answer is a resounding YES! …but not many choices. Due to the nature of our business, we decided to make use of the existing products out there. I have to say that we were very disappointed with the lack of capability and sophistication, as well as a general complexity in the use of the products we tested. 20 hours of training and I’m still trying to figure this thing …

 

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Log Packages in Seconds with Ease

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Did you know that the average student receives 21 packages per year? A typical facility will average 800 beds, so now you’re dealing with 16,800 packages per year with just one facility. Day in, day out, you find yourself or your department (if your lucky) manually logging in packages for hours. A time consuming task, and in todays economy time = money, so the more time your lose… you get the picture.

What Are The Options?

A few exist out there, but they each have their limitations both in scope and capability. Enter PackageLog – a fully cloud-based package management solution, developed by the mail management experts at US Postal Solutions. Just for clarity, US Postal Solutions has decades of experience in mail management with clients nationwide and has used their knowledge and research to create the most powerful package 

 

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