How to Communicate Reopening HOA Amenities This Summer
As vaccinations progress throughout the United States and many states take major strides to reopen, HOA’s across the country are formulating their plans on how to safely reopen amenities for the summer. Once the community has developed a plan in which it can safely reopen amenities, it’s important to communicate that plan to your residents. As your residents have diverse communication needs, have you identified the best ways to convey your reopening plans to them? In this blog article, we discuss different modes of communication you can use to communicate reopening HOA amenities with your residents and what each mode is best for.
Table of Contents
- Text messages
- Phone Calls
- Knowledge Base
- How to keep residents informed about reopening HOA amenities through Pilera
Your website will be one of the first places that your residents check for the latest information. Create a new page on your website to share information about reopening the community’s amenities. On the page, create a section for each amenity to convey the following information:
- Which amenities will be open or closed during the summer and hours of operation.
- What the capacity limits are for each amenity and other rules residents need to abide by such as any mask mandates or social distancing.
- Whether guests are allowed to use the amenity and if so, what limits are in place, and if the community requires them to show proof of vaccination.
- The HOA’s policy on requiring vaccines in order to attend community events or gain entry to amenities (if applicable) and where residents can register to receive their vaccine.
- To keep content on your website to a readable length, consider posting documents that residents can refer to for additional information.
Email remains one of the best ways to communicate with your residents. It’s most ideal to send email messages to your residents when the information you need to convey is lengthy and in-depth. Email is also a visual medium, which means you can add and format images to give the email a professional look. It’s also simpler to attach documents to an email you send to residents.
Some ways you can use emails to communicate to your residents about reopening include:
- Reopening dates for amenities and hours of operation with a reminder about rules and policies for using the amenities.
- Any new information concerning the reopening of your communities. Direct your residents to new information on your website or your portal’s document library.
Encourage your residents to respond back to emails or to email management directly about any questions or concerns they may have. It’s important to make it simple for your residents to contact you.
Text messages are an instant way of reaching your residents. According to Text Magic, 82% of text messages that individuals receive are read within 5 minutes. However, your residents will not want to receive constant text messages for every update you want to communicate about reopening. When should you use text messages?
- To send urgent or time-sensitive messages – An example would be if a resident tested positive after using an amenity and how the community plans to address sanitizing the area.
- Send reminders – An example would be to remind your residents that an amenity is closed for a certain number of hours for sanitation purposes.
- Send short messages – If a resident’s preferred method of communication is a text message, then it’s important to keep the message short, yet concise. At the end of the message, refer to other places where they can access more detailed information, such as your website, knowledge base, or document library.
Some of your residents may prefer a phone call instead of email or a text message. In this scenario, it’s important to keep your messages short, concise, and then only send them when necessary. Examples of when a phone call is ideal are when you need to communicate any sudden change to amenity operational hours or if there is an emergency.
Flyers are a great way to capture your resident’s attention to important information when they are in the common areas. Consider posting flyers in the pool area or entrance, community clubhouse, gyms, and in the entrances and insides of any amenity you have. Keep content on the flyer short, use a bulleted list, and use imagery to attract resident’s eyes to important information. Consider creating a flyer to convey important information such as:
- Amenity open hours.
- Social distancing rules.
- Mask guidance or mandates that your community has in place.
- Amenity use rules.
- Closed for cleaning signs.
- Board member or management contact information.
- Signage on areas where the community is restricting capacity so that social distancing is followed.
A document library is a centralized place for your residents to view all community documents. It organizes and stores files such as newsletters, financials, emergency procedures, bylaws, maintenance matrix, and more. In your document library, create a folder for your amenity reopening plans and policies.
Consider uploading documents to your library such as:
- Reopening plan and revisions to the plan that incorporate city, state, and national CDC recommendations/regulations. Be sure to accurately date all revisions you in the library so residents can retrieve the latest version.
- Amenity layouts – If your community has a gym, then it can be helpful to mark which areas have reduced capacity limits. You can also mark which equipment cannot be used to practice social distancing rules.
- Safety and sanitization measures the community is implementing.
- Convert the flyers you’ve created into a PDF file and then upload them to your document library.
Knowledge Base or Q&A Section
Implementing a Q&A format to answer your resident’s questions can help educate your residents about community safety and bring peace of mind to them. Your community’s own knowledge base is a great place for residents to easily search and find answers.
There are many questions that you can address in the knowledge base. In fact, the information on your website and document library can also take the form of a Q&A in the knowledge base. These include amenity rules, capacity restrictions, expectations for safe behavior, sanitization procedures, guest policies, and more.
Keep your residents informed about reopening HOA amenities through Pilera
Using a mix of traditional and digital communication methods to reach your residents is always the best route to take. That way, you can reach residents with time-sensitive information at the right time and place.
As a leading communications and management software provider, Pilera can help scale up your messaging & keep your residents informed every step of the way. Here’s what you can do through Pilera:
- Send automated phone, email, and text messages to the entire community in one click and instantly know your message was sent. Send emails to your entire portfolio or create location and people-based distribution groups so you can send more targeted messages.
- Create web pages, customize the content on the page, restrict access to board members or residents, and make a page public or private. You can also integrate various features within Pilera such as the document library and event calendar.
- Provide residents with a mobile-responsive portal so they can access the community’s documents and knowledge base 24×7 on any device. Restrict documents by board member and type of occupant.
- Give residents control of how they hear from you. Residents can select their communication preferences such as email, phone, and text. They can also view their communication history in the resident portal.
Pilera Software is the premier community and property management software that has helped thousands of community managers and back-office personnel enhance communications, improve customer service, and manage compliance and operations. Contact us so you can see how Pilera’s community management suite can increase work efficiency for your company.