7 Questions When Evolving From a Traditional to a Remotely Managed Facility

Posted by Janus International on May 31, 2024 11:56:00 AM

There is certainly no lack of opinions on the topic of traditional facilities vs. remotely managed sites. Technology, combined with the 2020 pandemic, accelerated the utilization of remote management tools and opened the industry’s eyes to the advantages of embracing tech that makes life easier and more profitable for owner-operators.


But we get it, you still have questions. There’s something about not having a live person right there in a lobby to help a customer that seems… different. Well, we’ve put together a list of important questions related to remote management that will explain the process, outline the advantages, and provide the reasons why remote management is nothing to be wary about.


QUESTION 1: Okay, So What Exactly Is a Remotely Managed Facility, and Does It Differ From an Unattended Site?


Good question, we should probably start by explaining the difference between the two. In a remotely managed facility, cutting-edge technology is utilized to help customers through the entire rental process using their phone or computer. From choosing their ideal unit and renting it to entering the facility and their unit with their smart device, remotely managed facilities make the entire process easier without the need for onsite staff. A centralized customer service hub is always available, so a manager can help with any phase of the rental process if needed.


An unattended facility is very different, however. There is also no on-site staff, but signage instructs the visitor to call a customer service number, which generally connects to the manager. Although there may be a self-serve kiosk, there is little to no added technology, such as fully automated rental processes, smart access to the facility and unit, virtual keys, or automated lock checks and overlocking.


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QUESTION 2: What Are the Benefits of Having a Remotely Managed Site?


For owner-operators, one of the biggest benefits is labor cost savings. Managing properties remotely allows the owner to save money on the number one operational expense: payroll. For example, StorEase operational expense ratios range between 23-28%, while traditional models land in the 35-45% range – that’s a big savings that can be applied to improving other aspects of the business.


In addition, it frees up the owner-operator to focus on growing their business, and not labor-intensive manual processes like overlocking and lock checks. With a remotely managed facility utilizing smart technology, these processes are fully automated.


Also, in a remotely managed facility that utilizes high-tech smart locks, such as the Nokē Smart Entry System, a safer and more secure environment is created. Managers can always see exactly who is coming and going and can grant or deny access as needed. This enhanced security creates a higher level of overall control and awareness.


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QUESTION 3: How Do I Enhance Safety and Security for Remotely Managed Sites?


A remotely managed site can be just as safe, if not safer, than a traditional facility. As mentioned above, the Nokē Smart Entry System is a Bluetooth electronic lock and total access control system that not only allows customers to access the facility and their unit with their smart device but also provides a higher level of security than traditional storage hasps and manual locks: Nokē smart locks can reduce the number of theft claims by as much as 95%. Now that is an enhanced level of security.


In addition, when you factor in the advantages of a trusted company such as Access Control Technologies, which can design and manufacture custom gates and also expertly integrate your site’s network to ensure that all of your smart technology works flawlessly, you have created a safe, secure, and easy-to-monitor environment ideal for remote management.


Another way to ensure a safe and secure facility is by utilizing the strongest, most durable unit doors. The Janus 650-NS Series is engineered to protect and maintain building envelopes without the heavy, weighted elements frequently required in commercial use. This premium series offers a durable and dependable solution, further securing the safety of your customers’ valuable possessions.




QUESTION 4: What About Remote Site Transactions? Do I need Special Software? Kiosks? Call Centers? Intergalactic Portals?


Automating the processes of renting a unit and moving in creates a streamlined environment that is achievable with several useful tools (and no pesky intergalactic portals!). A robust user-friendly website featuring online rental capabilities and live chat and call options makes life easier for both customer and owner-operator.




Additionally, an onsite rental center equipped with a kiosk or touchscreen, complemented by two-way audio or video functionalities, enables customers to easily seek assistance or ask questions when needed.


Finally, on-site unit guides and videos, along with displayed sample units are always helpful.


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QUESTION 5: Don’t I Need to Have a Live Person on-Site in Case Technology Fails? 


Some remotely managed sites do have an employee present from time to time, but if not, online live chat, chatbots, and call centers are a must. The customer needs to feel confident that if they need to reach out to someone for assistance, it’s easy to do so and their issues can be resolved in a timely fashion.




QUESTION 6: What’s the Best Way to Market a Remotely Managed Facility to the Public?


The smart revolution has arrived, and it’s here to stay. Think about it: we are increasingly using smart devices for everything from food shopping to job interviews to following our favorite sports teams. That technology and ease of use translate perfectly to the self-storage industry, and it’s what today’s customers want. A heightened emphasis on seamless transactions, an enhanced, personalized user experience, and the ability to do what you need, when you need it, is the key to marketing your facility to an audience that demands this level of technological freedom.


QUESTION 7: Sounds Like Remotely Managed Facilities Are the Future of the Industry, Or Am I Missing Something?


No, you nailed it. Remotely managed facilities are not merely an idea that is off in the distance. They are here to stay and are increasingly valuable to owner-operators looking to maximize both profits and time. They let you focus on growing your business in a variety of ways, while still being able to monitor every aspect of your facility effectively through technology that gets more advanced seemingly by the day. Now is the perfect time to embrace these advances. They will make your facility that much more attractive to today’s customers and give you a leg up on the competition. And who wouldn’t want that?


To learn more about Nokē smart solutions that can add value to your remotely managed self-storage facility, you can contact a representative here, and also request a quote.