Many operators have engaged in resident surveys for a considerable time, but it’s time to move beyond merely checking tasks off the list.

Resident surveys, especially when constructed with well-written questions, offer valuable insights that can uncover blind spots. These blind spots may have previously eluded our attention within our communities.
In this post, we explore six key areas where resident surveys can unveil hidden challenges in resident service, property management, and more.

1. Staff-Related Blind Spots:
While disgruntled residents might occasionally use surveys to vent frustrations about employees, patterns that emerge across multiple surveys could indicate larger issues. If consistent feedback points to shortcomings in your team’s performance, you can consider training opportunities or the need for a new team member.

2. Systemic Blind Spots:
Resident respondents can provide transparent insights spanning the entire resident service cycle – from application to lease signing, work order requests, amenity utilization, and more. Regularly checking and updating details such as website links, contact information, and hours of operation is crucial. Neglecting such details, like outdated pandemic-related banners( Smart Chick Megan STILL see’s this), can convey a lack of attention to detail.

3. Turnover Trends:
Resident surveys can shed light on trends in resident and employee turnover. If you consistently struggle with open positions, survey feedback can offer reasons behind this issue and highlight its impact on the property and customer satisfaction.

4. Safety Insights:
Residents experience the community around the clock and possess unique insights into safety concerns. Survey responses might uncover issues like malfunctioning lights, faulty security equipment, or crime trends. By consistently surveying residents, you can gain valuable data on safety and other areas.

5. Training Opportunities:
Resident surveys can reveal areas of friction related to policies and procedures within your team. Identifying consistent concerns can help improve training, streamline processes, and enhance overall performance.

6. Uncovering Barriers:
Resident surveys can uncover unexpected barriers that might have gone unnoticed. For instance, a survey might reveal that a community pool, assumed to be a desirable amenity, is of little interest to residents. Through continuous surveying, you can uncover and address such barriers creatively, as seen in the example Smart Chick Megan shares where residents of an apartment community in PA selected an outdoor ninja warrior gym instead of keeping the existing pool.

Resident surveys are a powerful tool for gathering insights and data that can keep your team engaged for months. Your approach to using this feedback determines the extent of the benefits you gain. As Jay Baer, the author and marketer, wisely noted, “Hug your haters, and love the feedback that they give, for it is a gift!”.

Happy Surveying!