HAN­NAH GILL

BE­YOND BUSI­NESS DE­VEL­OP­MENT

Elite Property Manager - - Front Page -

THE ROLE Of Busi­ness De­vel­op­ment Man­ager (BDM) to­day is an ab­so­lutely vi­tal part of prop­erty man­age­ment busi­ness, fo­cus­ing at­ten­tion on rev­enue and rent roll growth. As a BDM Han­nah’s list of achieve­ments to date is very im­pres­sive. She main­tains a 99.3 per cent ap­praisal-to-list­ing ra­tio (not in­clud­ing mul­ti­ple list­ings where more than one prop­erty is pur­sued at the same meet­ing), man­ages 12 di­rect staff, han­dles the mar­ket­ing side of the prop­erty man­age­ment busi­ness and is con­tin­u­ally look­ing to im­prove re­peat and re­fer­ral busi­ness strate­gies. The man­age­ment fee she achieves on av­er­age is around one per cent higher than the ACT av­er­age, max­imis­ing both agency and land­lord cash flows. She is a li­censed real es­tate agent, the agency’s youngest share­holder, and will com­plete a man­age­ment and lead­er­ship diploma this year, as well as be­ing en­rolled in the Aus­tralian In­sti­tute of Com­pany Di­rec­tors’ course.

When I met Han­nah it was easy to see why prospec­tive clients are drawn to her; she has a great energy and an easy go­ing, down to earth man­ner at the same time.

I start by ask­ing her a bit more about IPM and how the busi­ness op­er­ates. She an­swers, “In­de­pen­dent is quite unique. We are a one-stop-shop, ba­si­cally. We’ve got ev­ery­thing from PM, strata, sales. We’ve got projects, town plan­ning, mar­ket­ing, HR, fi­nance. Ev­ery­thing you need for prop­erty trans­ac­tion, we can of­fer. We have seven sales of­fices and one prop­erty man­age­ment of­fice.”

The team of 12 that Han­nah man­ages is made up of other BDMs, leas­ing con­sul­tants, ad­min and a graphic de­signer/ pho­tog­ra­pher. I note that hav­ing a de­signer on staff is quite unique to prop­erty man­age­ment. Han­nah re­sponds, “We used to have the PMs take their own photos, and in our mar­ket­place that was the norm. Then we em­ployed a per­son who has a graphic de­sign de­gree, but has also done pho­tog­ra­phy. So the over­head is min­i­mal be­cause it’s just salary. But with pro­fes­sional pho­tog­ra­phy, we can ob­vi­ously pro­vide a whole dif­fer­ent level of ser­vice for our clients.”

As it hap­pens, this salary is clev­erly taken care of by another key part of IPMs mar­ket­ing strat­egy, a pro­fes­sion­ally de­signed and printed mag­a­zine called Move. This mag­a­zine is also unique to the Can­berra mar­ket and re­places the stan­dard rental list. I ask Han­nah how this came about.

“The in­spi­ra­tion for the mag­a­zine came from a Mel­bourne agency who were do­ing some­thing sim­i­lar,” says Han­nah. “I was look­ing again at the stan­dard of our brand and what we want to be pro­vid­ing for our clients. The stan­dard rental list is three or four A4 pages roughly sta­pled to­gether; I just don’t think that cuts it any more. These days we are talk­ing ‘tech ev­ery­thing’! If we’re go­ing to be do­ing pa­per publi­ca­tions, let’s make it the best it can be. We do av­er­age any­where from 150 to 200 prop­er­ties avail­able at any given time, so we’ve al­ways got the stock to be able to pro­duce the mag­a­zine, and it’s evolved from there.”

The mag­a­zine is avail­able through the seven sales of­fices and at spon­sor shop fronts, lo­cal restau­rants, cafes and busi­nesses. “The way we’ve achieved this to the stan­dard we have is that we charge our own­ers – ob­vi­ously it’s mar­ket­ing and advertising. We charge them for the costs in­volved per list­ing. Then we also have a num­ber of our sup­pli­ers and trades­peo­ple com­pa­nies advertising in there. As a re­sult, we’re look­ing at roughly $91,000 of profit in a 12-month pe­riod.”

Apart from the mag­a­zine, what other

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