Property Management App Insights with Barcode Scanning
Equestrian Concierge, Inc. and JDM of the Palm Beaches, Inc. were early adopters of using smartphones & tablets for data collection. They have shared how they use codeREADr as a property management app. codeREADr has allows them to track, monitor, and document how they manage properties.
- They first created a simple database of every service point to be checked.
- They then printed & placed small QR code labels or tags at those service points. If you don’t want to use barcodes though, you don’t have to. You can just use codeREADr’s “Lookup” feature to search for the service point.
- They then created usernames for those authorized to use the app. However, clients have many options. You can create a single username for all users. You can also create usernames for each member of your staff. See Best Practices for creating your own service.
How Data Collection Works
codeREADr prompts users to answer questions about service points. Some require a multiple-choice selection. Others require manual entry, via text or voice. App users are prompted to record the service they’re performing and the resulting status. For example. this could be the settings for HVAC, security, or water heaters. Or it could be the condition of the house, pool, or gardens. The possibilities are endless. They’re also prompted to note any special considerations. For example, leaking roofs and plumbing issues. Administrators can then see how long it took to complete a specific service or all services. Invoicing clients is then. They can even record the items and costs for materials used. Every scan is either posted to codeREADr’s cloud servers in real-time or stored on the device. In that case, it’s later synced to the servers.
- The benefit of real-time scanning is the ability for the administrator to see activities as they occur.
- The benefits of storing scans on the device are faster scanning and the ability to use devices without the expense of a phone company’s data plan.
Each scan records the service type, the app username, the service point, a date/time stamp and the app user’s answers to any questions. A GPS stamp can also be included. Once the data is posted or uploaded to codeREADr’s servers, the administrator can filter the data by each data point. Then, they can view the scan data online and then export it using a customized report template.
Considerations for Property Tagging
Service point labels should ideally be printed with a QR code or an NFC tag, but any barcode will work. Alternatively, you could simply print each service point ID with a human-readable number for text or voice entry. If you are using a validation database, you could use the app’s Look-Up feature to text or voice search for the service point in the database. It’s remarkably fast and accurate even when searching for text content or the first few characters of the barcode value.
You can print QR labels yourself using low-cost programs, such as iBarcoder for PC and MAC, or have them printed professionally. Even some new handheld label printers can now print QR codes along with 1D barcodes. It’s no problem if you can’t use a QR code, though. A good alternative would be Code 39 or Code 128 which are very common.
If you use QR codes as your barcode, you can embed an ID (e.g., A12345). You can also embed a textual identifier of the service point (e.g., 123 Main St.). With a record-only service, you should embed a textual identifier if possible. With validation services, you should embed an ID and then associate textual identifiers and other information in the ‘Response’ text.
Response text is the text the app user sees after scanning a valid service point ID. The service point ID might be ‘A12345’ and the response text ‘123 Main St.’ See importing a CSV file for format directions.
Developers can also embed URLs in the response text pointing to the service point’s picture, for example. Or the URL can even point to more data collection options.
A Property Management App to Track Performance
codeREADr allows administrators to monitor activities and improve their performance. They can take immediate action when necessary. They can also provide detailed reports to their clients to document their activities. All data is encrypted and securely transmitted via SSL (Secure Socket Layer). This ensures that data is safe and secure. It’s only accessible to an administrator. Administrators need a codeREADr.com username and password.
According to Chelsey, Equestrian Concierge’s manager, “We use the barcode system to scan in and out of the properties we check on a weekly basis… We also use it to show we were there cleaning carpets or dropping off groceries, etc. We basically use the scans to log any activity happening at that client’s property at any given time.”
Unique Property Management Applications
In addition to routine property management app tasks, Chelsey told us they receive all kinds of interesting client requests. According to Chelsey, client requests keep them really busy, including:
“… installing a Bee Hive Chandelier…yes, like an actual beehive from nature!! The client loved the authentic beehive he found and had us install it over his kitchen table as a chandelier, light bulbs, and all!
We have a lot of seasonal clients. So, around November…we will get requests to go grocery shopping and stock their homes with items so when they arrive, they will have food and essentials…
We have gone to the mall and picked up clothes in-store and overnighted them to clients out of state. We handle “Bill Pay” for our clients, in which we will pay all their bills for them…This is especially helpful to my clients who travel internationally…
The list is quite endless…We are basically a personal assistant to every client that walks in our doors!”
Kudos to Chelsey for her management skills and foresight. We are excited that Equestrian Concierge and JDM have utilized codeREADR’s technology as a first-rate property management app. We look forward to learning more about such applications!