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One business structure does not fit all

31 March 2015 Elyse Perrau

Property managers have been advised not to close their minds to new strategies as the debate between pod and portfolio structures rages on.

LJ Hooker Parramatta senior property manager Justin Spencer told Residential Property Manager last week that switching from portfolio to pod had made his business much more efficient.

BDM Academy director Tara Bradbury said there is no one-size-fits-all approach and that agencies should seriously consider both options and be prepared to change as their business evolves.

“From my experience, as the rent roll grew in size our structure changed to support the growth,” she told Residential Property Manager.

Ms Bradbury said the factors to consider are the size of the rent roll, the location of the agency, the leadership structure and how the principal will manage the team most effectively.

Portfolio structure

Ms Bradbury said the main positive of a portfolio structure is that the landlord deals with only one property manager, who acts as the main set of eyes on the investment property. 

“[However], poor systems and communication within a team can impact the investor when the portfolio manager is out at inspections or on vacation,” she said.

“If the portfolio manager leaves and goes to another agency, [you lose] the relationship and experience built around the individual.”

Pod structure

Ms Bradbury said a pod structure still allows one PM to be the main point of contact.

However, the senior PM will also have a support team that handles administration and some out-of-office duties.

“This also means you have a backup when someone who knows the portfolio well is not in the office, or leaves the agency, and can continue providing the investor with the same level of service.”

Ms Bradbury said a potential negative with a pod structure was the need for a strong team leader.

“You would split duties across your pod and it is very important to ensure the pod leader has strong communications with the investor, delegates well and follows up where required.” 

 

[Related: Pod structure boosts PM career progression]

One business structure does not fit all
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