By Scott Prater
FORT CARSON, Colo. — Residents of Fort Carson Family Homes in Fort Carson should have an easier time logging work orders and scheduling maintenance with a new service supported by live 24/7 work order agents days out of 7.
Balfour Beatty Communities (BBC), the post’s housing management partner, launched the new service for Fort Carson Family Homes residents on March 1, 2021, and work order officers began answering questions and planning instantly maintenance appointments.
“We now have a live agent who takes calls from our maintenance line and is able to enter resident work orders, schedule work orders and dispatch technicians on site,” said Justin Mueller, Senior Regional Facilities Manager, Balfour Beatty Communities. “It’s important because we’re improving the overall resident experience and making sure residents have more certainty about when we’ll be there to make repairs.
An important feature of the new service is its 24/7 functionality.
“We’ve had feedback from customers that sometimes it’s been difficult to place a work order or get a person on the phone,” Mueller said. “This program was something we envisioned to help eliminate those challenges and concerns. This is going to be extremely beneficial and will help streamline the work order process. This should help residents spend less time placing a work order – 3-5 minutes. Anything we can do to make this process easier for residents while responding to their concerns quickly (will be beneficial) and will allow us to be at a resident’s home within days. That’s the goal of this whole program.
Previously, when residents called the Fort Carson Family Homes service line at 579-1065 during business hours, they reached a work order agent in Fort Carson. After hours and during periods of high call volume, calls from residents were routed to a call service, which then sent messages to Fort Carson Family Homes representatives.
From 1 March 2021, all calls to the maintenance line are routed to live work order agents who are directly connected to the BBC’s work order system and can enter and schedule work orders, dispatch teams for urgent or emergency work orders, as well as providing status information on open work orders.
“Whatever residents call, whether it’s a water leak or an appliance problem, the work order will be immediately entered into our system and we will dispatch our teams according to priority. good work and resident availability,” Mueller said. “If we receive a call for an emergency or an urgent request, we will send this information directly to a technician so that they can respond quickly. If it is a routine request, we will record it in our system and schedule the appointment with the resident at the time the application is submitted, which is huge for us.
BBC executives said the new approach had been in the planning and implementation stages for some time.
“There has been a significant investment to improve our services to residents,” said Shawna Swanson, Western Army Regional Property Manager for the BBC. “Justin (Mueller) has probably spent the last six months getting all the data and features ready.”
Briefing new work order agents on elements specific to the Fort Carson Family Homes community also required long and focused training.
“Really, it’s nothing we haven’t done for our traditional work order administrators,” Mueller said. “Ultimately, we want our technicians to be successful when they visit a home, so we have specific follow-up questions and instructions that our work order officers review with residents. We want our service technicians to have the right parts on hand so they can fix the problem the first time and deliver the exceptional experience our residents have come to expect.
For now, the new 24/7 service is specific to Fort Carson, although BBC executives have indicated the company is considering rolling out the new strategy to other BBC facilities.
Additionally, housing management officials have made it clear that the new service does not replace any other platform clients can use to log work orders and report urgent or time-sensitive issues. Residents of Fort Carson Family Homes can still communicate their requests through the Rent Café app and online through the Resident Portal.
There are no special instructions for contacting the BBC by telephone. Residents of Fort Carson Family Homes can continue to call 719-579-1065, as in the past, to register work orders or report issues.