Finding the right vendor in the right area has long been a challenge for multifamily operators. And for third-party service companies, getting new business has been difficult, sometimes forcing them to resort to door-to-door solicitation.
But the gap is about to get tighter.
This summer, RealPage is launching a new vendor management platform designed to make it easier for real estate industry service professionals to connect with apartment operators. Vendors and property managers can find common ground and get down to business quicker.
Vendor Marketplace, a new feature of RealPage’s vast spend management platform set to launch at RealWorld July 21-23 in Orlando, offers property managers the ability to better search a single source of vendor information that contains well-qualified, reputable vendors to connect with them about their products and services. Companies in RealPage’s vast vendor database can be found through more robust search criteria and greater visibility.
The application improves functionality and simplifies RealPage’s existing vendor management software into a single solution that integrates with the company’s other products, all for no additional charge to existing customers.
Finding the right vendor – or being seen by a property management company – is a short click away.
Taking the guesswork out of finding the right vendor
The service is rolling into the multifamily space at a time when property management companies are spending more time on controlling expenses than increasing ROI through bumping rents. RealPage’s spend management solution encompasses various features within Vendor Marketplace but users have had to move in and out of solutions to access vendors. With RealPage’s unified log-in, customers can access the company’s database of hundreds of thousands of vendors that work with multifamily properties.
In a recent webcast, “How to Optimize Your Vendor Program With Winning Results,” RealPage Vice President, Spend Management Sara Jones said the new platform takes the guess work out of picking the right vendor, especially for site level associates who may not be aware of corporate spend practices.
“They may have a preferred vendor with a negotiated contract that they could use but unfortunately the sites are not aware or don’t know how to access those vendors,” Jones said. “So, they just pick one.”
The new vendor-focused platform enables anyone in the organization with access to search the database or find preferred vendors.
Vendor Marketplace features multiple ways to search for new vendors dedicated to real estate industry. Products and services offer a particular category – appliances, building repair, etc. – and additional searches can be made through naming convention or key words. Searches can be filtered by area – local and national – and for minority businesses.
Providing vendors better visibility and ability to market
Vendor Marketplace is as much about improving the match process for service companies and product providers as it is for the property management companies.
The expanded search and filtering process offers greater visibility, something that 400 vendors said they needed in a recent RealPage external survey.
Also, vendors will now be able to better market their products and services through a content-rich profile that enables videos, photos and service/product descriptions. No need, says Jones, for vendors to knock on doors, which is a manual, time-consuming and hard-to-scale process that distracts them from their core business activities. Profiles will also contain badges that lets searches know if the vendor participates in Vendor Credentialing or is a catalog or e-Invoice user.
“This is their opportunity to really showcase their business,” Jones said. “They have the ability to clearly indicate what they do, the multiple services they offer and their service areas.”
Once a multifamily property representative finds the right vendor the company can be contacted via email, “a big hit for our vendors.”
In addition, vendors can see how many times their profile has gotten a hit, which Jones says will encourage them to continue to participate in the program.
Simpler way to connect for business opportunities
From searches to credentialing to billing, Vendor Marketplace is making it simpler for real estate service and product companies to unite with apartments.
“We are excited to add integration touchpoints to applications like Vendor Credentialing and RealPage Accounting,” Jones said. “These integration will help with consistent vendor information and reduce duplicate records, which causes accounts payable nightmares.”
Ready to mitigate vendor risk and manage vendor compliance? Learn more about how to optimize your vendor program by watching the webcast.