Customizing the owner experience through communications and technology with AAM CIO Eric Parsons, PMP ®

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Partner Spotlight:  Associated Asset Management

AAM teamed up with Nordis Technologies earlier this year to streamline and automate the development and distribution of 1.5 million maintenance fee statements, annual meeting notices, compliance updates and other communications for 500,000 homeowners at more than 700 community associations in nine states. The partnership with Nordis is part of a strategic focus on technology to stay ahead of competitors by offering a better owner experience.

How important is technology to growing your business?

It is important in a couple ways. The core of our business is about relationships, so one of the goals with our technology is to free up more time, allowing our employees to engage in building those relationships.

Additionally, it is important when considering the work product that AAM produces. Beyond client relationships, we are fundamentally an information and financial management firm. Our company goal is to offer total peace of mind through transparency and accountability, and technology makes it possible for us to deliver on both. We developed our web-based customer portal BoardVue®, which allows HOA board members to access our records management systems. They can run real-time reports on violations, architectural submittals and their financials. The system also has collaboration tools for working on board documents, calendars and project management capabilities to manage board business. This system sets us apart from other HOA management firms.

What initiatives are you focused on now?

We have a number of new technology efforts rolling out this year and next, including moving to a new accounting/ERP system and an updated BoardVue® customer portal. We just introduced a mobile app for iOS and Android.

We are also leveraging Nordis’ Expresso platform to offer more choice and convenience for our homeowners and HOAs. Starting in December, we are going live with digital statements. We are planning a campaign to promote this new option for owners, offering an e-statements opt-in, including an easy-to-scan QR code, on every mailed statement. In addition to digital statements, we are moving forward with ExpressoVote in early 2019. ExpressoVote offers a comprehensive and easy-to-use application for the entire HOA election process, including managing in-person, digital and mailed ballots, tabulation and communications. Our collaboration with Nordis will allow us to tailor the voting solution so it meets the needs of our specific communities.

What are you doing to improve the customer journey?

Innovation creates opportunities. The goal is to streamline our owner interactions, providing immediate access, accurate information and expanded communication options in the channel the customer prefers.

For example, owners can pay via phone, online, mail or using the new mobile app. Owners who want to talk to a customer service rep but not wait on hold can choose the automatic call-back option. We’re exploring offering support via text messages as well.

How do customer communications fit into your plans?

HOAs often change management companies because of communication issues, so we created BoardVue® for our HOA boards. For all owners, Expresso is a key element of our efforts to make interactions faster and easier through its omnichannel delivery options. The ability to customize customer content also is very powerful. We removed static, generic language in all statements. With Expresso, we can customize statement content and messaging, creating a more personalized owner experience. 

What results have you seen since you started using Nordis?

Other communications companies have products; Nordis offers a platform and a partnership. They bring creative ideas and skills to address business issues and opportunities. They also bring best practices from other industries to us.

Nordis is giving us scale, accuracy, consistency and stability without sacrificing flexibility. With Nordis’ API, we are expanding our digital offerings, including presenting statements in the mobile app and customer portal. We are more responsive. We created a tool we call NED, for Nordis Expresso Documents, which lets our customer service reps input an owner’s phone number and instantly pull up the owner’s records. We think ExpressoVote will be another big improvement.

What would surprise people about AAM?

When people contact AAM, it’s often because they have a problem—they’ve been fined for leaving their trash can out, for example. But our company culture, processes and standards help alleviate what can be challenging interactions for both owners and employees. As a result, we are ranked one of the Best Places to Work in Arizona by the Phoenix Business Journal, based on employee votes, and we have 95%+ client retention, including the first client we did business with 28 years ago.