In 2017, SPS was using TOPS Pro software, which was a Windows-based system. The staff had used TOPS Pro for years and recognized the system had limited functionality. Rick used more sophisticated, cloud-based systems in his previous job and knew the capabilities a more advanced platform could offer. “Our biggest problem was that a lot of the auxiliary programs we were using to try to bridge the gaps for our consumers, our homeowners, and our boards didn’t work well with TOPS Pro,” Rick said.
In December 2017, SPS decided to migrate to TOPS [ONE], doing a test run with one of the larger communities. Rick said that changing from a familiar platform to a new one can be hard, but it was necessary. Employees were given tutorials and exercises to make the transition easier, but in the end, SPS went live in March 2018, transferring all 68 communities. “The band-aid just got ripped off.” Some staff struggled initially with making the changes, he said, but they eventually came around.
In 2017, SPS managed 7,000 doors. In January 2021, they had grown to 15,000, with plans to expand to 20,000 by the end of the year. This growth wouldn’t be possible without TOPS [ONE], Rick said. As each community is added, it is integrated into TOPS [ONE], he said. “The previous software was too cumbersome. It didn’t allow access for boards or homeowners, the way TOPS [ONE] does.” That access relieves pressure on the office because the homeowner can access an online account to get information instead of having to call the association office.
Without this function of TOPS [ONE], SPS would need to hire more staff, so the software in effect is saving approximately $200,000 annually. But it’s not just administrative savings that enabled SPS to create its impressive growth. It was the ability to have essential information for the entire business portfolio, along with the efficiency and agility to make changes and corrections as needed. This responsiveness helps SPS build the relationships with homeowners and board members that SPS is known for.
One of the areas SPS realized tremendous efficiency was in collections. Automating functions with TOPS [ONE] was a game changer, Rick said. Collections can be set up to be customized to each community. The software platform’s ability to automate collections cuts the time spent on the process in half, he said.
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