Many people don’t think that the self-storage industry is technologically adaptable. The assumption is that running a self-storage business is straightforward, as all you require is a lock, an empty building, and electricity. However, this is far from the truth. Running a successful facility requires proper marketing, management, and accounting, and these processes require technological tools to improve efficiency and save time. If you’re in the self-storage business, here’s how to use new technology to improve your company’s operation.
1. Climate-Controlled Units for the Safe Keeping of Sensitive Items
If you want to store items susceptible to temperature fluctuations for a long time, keeping them in excellent condition in a facility that’s not climate-controlled is impossible. You can expect to experience significant damage quicker if such a building is constructed from metal. According to Metal Construction News, metal building construction in 2021 increased by 12.9%.
Even with the rise in such facilities, companies are housing temperature-sensitive items by integrating them with climate control systems. The systems help monitor and control the temperatures inside the storage facility, keeping your delicate items in optimal condition.
2. Improved Convenience With Self-Serve Kiosks
Many self-storage facilities employ staff who work round the clock to help customers load and unload their items in and out of the container. Nowadays, businesses are eliminating the need for full-time employees by using digital kiosks. Operators integrate this digital platform with their self-storage software, helping tenants manage their storage units conveniently.
Using the platform, they can pay for the space they’re leasing, check for available units, and pay for them if they need extra storage space.
3. Efficient Billing With Automation
Traditionally, self-storage facilities had to manually enter the client information before setting them up on a monthly recurring fee. This process was inefficient because they had to manually adjust billing, especially if an operator ran such a facility in different locations. With the help of self-storage management software, facility managers now easily address such challenges.
For instance, when the storage price increases due to rent, they include it in the software, and it’s automatically billed to their clients. The software can generate financial reports to help you tell how their facility is performing. This is important because, according to the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, companies insured by the FDIC must disclose quarterly financial reports referred to as call reports.
4. Convenient Storage Solutions With Valet Service
Self-storage companies looking to stand out offer valet storage. With this self-storage option, clients request that their goods be picked up and delivered to their location instead of customers having to collect the items independently. Besides offering convenient transportation of goods and services, storage companies get to utilize their vehicles. In fact, according to Fortune magazine, vehicles in the United States spend about 95% of their lifetime parked.
Many companies usually integrate mobile apps with their facility management system. With the mobile app, customers can schedule when their goods can be transported and even track them in transit in real time.
5. Location Tracking for Improved Security
Self-storage operators have the responsibility to keep their property safe. To this end, many business owners have integrated security solutions like video surveillance in their facility management software to monitor who enters and leaves their facility, especially the loading bay. The software can even inform you when to add another loading bay to enhance your client’s moving experience.
With the number of people requiring a facility to store their items, the storage industry will continue to experience significant growth every year. To improve efficiency in their self-storage business, operators are adopting newer technology. The use of technology ranges from integrating surveillance systems in facility management systems and improving security to using self-serve kiosks to allow automatic loading and unloading without the need for onsite staff.