Last modified on July 29th, 2021
By Megan Eales Monroe
Every day, your multifamily housing portfolio generates, collects, and analyzes incredible amounts of business data. From adjusting marketing efforts based on occupancy rates, to increasing maintenance budgets to tackle open work orders, to hiring additional front office staff to improve tenant satisfaction scores, each business decision made within your organization is driven, at least on some level, by data.
But if you’re using disparate software collection systems that manage metrics differently from one another, how can you be confident that you’re getting an accurate picture of what’s really happening across your properties?
The harsh reality is: you can’t. Not unless you take control of your data and establish one system that everyone in your organization can use — and more importantly, depend on — for consistent data collection and reporting.
In other words, you need a single source of truth.
The benefits of a single source of truth
Experian’s 2021 Global Data Management Research report revealed that more than 55% of surveyed business leaders “lack trust in their data assets, hindering their ability to be fully data driven.” To combat this lack of trust, Experian recommends businesses invest in, and commit to, a data management strategy.
Data management is the practice of collecting, storing, and organizing information, and it only makes sense to start directly at the source. That’s because the risks associated with using misaligned data from different platforms are higher than you realize, but the benefits of establishing and using a single source of truth can be seen throughout your entire organization:
- Make true apples-to-apples comparisons: When you’re pulling data from Platform A and comparing it to data from Platform B, you’re actually getting an apples-to-oranges comparison. That’s because you might have two systems that have the same field names and report outputs, but they likely don’t pull metrics or perform calculations in precisely the same ways. Using one system and one source of data will help ensure your comparisons are truly accurate.
- Maximize resources and time: Using a single source of truth for your entire organization provides team members with one reliable system for consistent reporting and analysis. Without having to pull data from varying sources and decipher contradictory information, your team can compile comprehensive reports more quickly and easily, freeing them up for more relevant business responsibilities.
- Eliminate redundant platform functionality: Many of the systems you have in place today likely have some overlapping capabilities, which also means you’re paying twice (or more) for the same features. Overpaying affects your budgets, which affects revenue and, ultimately, affects your NOI. Also, if Team Member A is pulling data from Platform A, while Team Member B is pulling similar yet different data from Platform B, then we’re right back to the apples-to-oranges issue.
- Streamline data for greater insights: With one source of truth, your team can pull cleaner data, more consistently. This also means you can take advantage of market shifts and act quickly on real-time insights rather than collating a bevy of reports for accuracy and second-guessing the data that dictates which direction you go.
Putting your source of truth to work
Once you’ve organized your data into your single source of truth, you’ll be in a much stronger position to act — and rely — on the data your portfolios are generating.
However, establishing a single source of truth is just one step in clearing your organization’s data hurdles and raising the quality of internal business intelligence. Learn the other steps you need to transform your property management company into a truly data-driven organization with our complimentary ebook, Solving the multifamily industry data challenge. This executive guide dives deeper into how a single source of truth and a solid data strategy can put your metrics directly to work in order to unlock actionable data-driven insights for your unique multifamily business.