ACE Geelong & Surf Coast's Urbanise Journey
Venessa Afonso, a seasoned healthcare professional with over 25 years of nursing experience, embarked on a career transformation in 2011. Alongside her business partner, she ventured into the dynamic field of strata management by acquiring the Surf Coast ACE Body Corporate franchise.
In 2012, they expanded their footprint by acquiring the Geelong franchise, doubling their portfolio. Their commitment to excellence led to further expansion with the addition of the Werribee franchise in 2018.
Today, ACE Geelong & Surf Coast manages an impressive 365 plans comprising 3286 lots. In her role as Director, Venessa collaborates closely with her business partner, Mario, to lead a proficient team of four strata managers. They've also streamlined their operations by partnering with an external agency for invoice processing.
The remarkable growth and success of ACE Geelong & Surf Coast have not gone unnoticed. Their exceptional achievements were recently recognised as winners of the Ace Franchise Growth Award. This accolade recognises franchises that have demonstrated outstanding growth through portfolio expansion, client retention, staff augmentation, and the management of increasingly complex properties.
In Venessa's case, the numbers speak volumes: ACE Geelong & Surf Coast has experienced an 18.75% revenue growth over the past two years, affirming their dedication to delivering top-tier services. Notably, they've achieved a substantial 20% surge in additional service charges, a testament to their ability to monetise their services efficiently.
Moreover, the franchise's portfolio has witnessed remarkable expansion, with a staggering 40% increase in the number of lots under their professional care. This growth underscores their capacity to take on more properties while upholding the highest service quality standards.
Transition to Urbanise Strata
Recognising the need to streamline operations and optimise efficiency while maintaining their renowned service quality, ACE Geelong & Surf Coast embarked on a journey to transition to Urbanise Strata from Urbanise’s early version of the strata software, Strataware. The process began with a preview of the new system in 2022, followed by a comprehensive transition from August 2022 to May 2023, with the platform fully operational by February 2023.
Key benefits and improvements following their transition to Urbanise
The Urbanise Strata platform introduced several vital benefits and improvements to the company, including:
Levies and arrears automation: Urbanise's levies and arrears management automation replaced manual, time-consuming processes. Previously, staff had to download reports, manually check them, and physically issue levies. With Urbanise, this process was streamlined, reducing the time required by over 50%.
Enhanced productivity: The platform's intuitive features, such as drag-and-drop functionality and multi-tab support, significantly improved team productivity by eliminating the need to open and close tasks repeatedly.
Task management: The task module within Urbanise became a valuable tool for automating repetitive tasks and overseeing long-term projects, ensuring efficient project tracking and follow-ups with external contractors. Before Urbanise, the company was using external software to manage tasks. This integration has saved critical time, reduced their tech stack, and saved them US1600 per annum in the cost of additional software.
The measurable outcomes following the transition to Urbanise
Implementing Urbanise Strata has yielded measurable improvements for the agency, such as;
Streamlined operations: The platform's automation and efficiency enhancements have provided the confidence to take on more properties, secure in the knowledge that the high service standards can be maintained.
Time and cost savings: Significant reductions in administrative time were achieved, particularly in the issuance of levies and invoicing for additional charges. These time savings directly translated into cost savings and improved profitability.
Winning new business: The platform's ability to streamline and automate processes boosts confidence in handling more properties and simplifies property transfers when acquiring from companies already using Urbanise.
Increase in revenue: Urbanise Strata allows us to quickly charge for additional services, eliminating the need to spend hours reconciling charges.
How Urbanise has helped to win new business
Size does matter in the strata industry, and their ability to effectively manage an ever-increasing number of lots, thanks to automation, has been instrumental in their success. Urbanise has equipped them with a powerful toolset to streamline and automate essential processes. This, in turn, has instilled confidence within the team, allowing them to take on more properties without compromising the quality of service they provide to their clients.
Furthermore, Urbanise has empowered them to manage existing properties more efficiently and facilitated their expansion. They have adopted several substantial schemes and experienced remarkable organic growth in Werribee. In the past 12 months alone, they have successfully integrated 30 new properties into their portfolio, achieved without extensive marketing efforts.
Feedback on the Urbanise team and support
Venessa and her team have praised the Urbanise team for their assistance during the transition. The ability to see a roadmap of future developments and the ticket system for tracking progress has been particularly valuable.
The team's support in integrating third-party software, such as StrataVote, enhanced efficiency. They are also excited about upcoming features like the communication module, which promises to streamline operations further.
While the Urbanise platform has already delivered substantial benefits to ACE Geelong & Surf Coast, Venessa looks forward to continued improvements, especially in enhancing the owner's portal to reduce the workload for strata managers and improve communication methods.
“Urbanise Strata not only met but exceeded our expectations. The modern user interface, intuitive design, and robust features have empowered our team to streamline daily tasks, enhance overall efficiency, and confidently win new business. Urbanise Strata's automation capabilities, particularly in levies and arrears management, have saved us significant time and improved accuracy. What used to take weeks is now accomplished effortlessly. Moreover, the platform's dashboards, reports, and insights have become invaluable tools in showcasing our professionalism and securing new clients. Thanks to the streamlined processes and automation, we can now ensure that all our work is properly accounted for, enhancing our profitability and clients' satisfaction. Urbanise Strata has truly transformed our business for the better.” – Venessa Afonso, Director, ACE Geelong & Surf Coast
If you're interested in learning more about Urbanise Strata, book a demo with one of our team today.