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Finding an apartment in a big city can be a headache. You've got to pick the right place, furnish it, connect with roommates, set up house rules — the list goes on.
HubHaus aims to solve this problem by offering co-living rentals in popular cities, like San Francisco and Washington, DC. HubHaus takes care of the rental process from start to finish, so renters can take advantage of a vibrant member social calendar and build a strong sense of community.
HubHaus’ Head of Growth, Kei Kondo, described the company’s original customer communication process as “chaos.” He says, “We had 20-30 showings per night, and our team was following up randomly via email or text. Sometimes multiple team members were following up with the same person. And there was no centralization. We had no visibility into the process to know where any given deal stood. It was madness.” As the company grew, the problem was exacerbated.
We had no visibility into the process to know where any given deal stood. It was madness.”
— Kei Kondo, Head of Growth, HubHaus
One night, 50 people came to a single showing. As the team reviewed the showing results later, they realized that no one knew much of anything about the prospects. They knew they needed to quickly find a solution to establish a more organized communication process, give them better visibility, and enable consistent follow-up.
Rolling out Front was simple, according to Kondo. With the majority of teammates now on Front, everyone had full visibility into the status of any deal and any communication thread, over email or text.
With Front, the team felt they had less of an unbearable workload. They were able to break lead communication management into shifts, designating one person per shift to be responsible for all communication. Comments on each conversation ensured that the teammate covering the next shift knew where things stood with any given lead.
HubHaus saw a dramatically faster average response time with Front. Follow-ups are now automated and scheduled to happen the morning after each showing, they respond to new messages in under 15 minutes on average.
Automation in Front was a key tool for setting the company up for growth. “We wanted to ensure everything was optimized for efficiency, in a way that made the customer interaction as human as possible. Front allowed us to do that.”
We wanted to ensure everything was optimized for efficiency, in a way that made the customer interaction as human as possible. Front allowed us to do that.”
— Kei Kondo, Head of Growth, HubHaus
With Front, HubHaus was able to outsource lead follow up for evenings and weekends. Kondo says, “Using Front, since so much of the process is automated, and we now have an organized system. We have confidence that we can maintain quality when outsourcing. We can also review the conversations that happened on evenings and weekends to make sure conversations are at the quality level we want.”
With Front, the HubHaus team was more efficient, which had a direct impact on key metrics. Of the 550 average number of leads that reach out to HubHaus every day, the team is now able to get 200 to come to a showing, up 50% from their previous conversion rate. Of those 200, 15% now sign a lease, up from 10% prior to using Front.
HubHaus used the Front API to automate some of the time-consuming tasks throughout their customer journey, from sending text messages to remind leads about showings they signed up for, to communicating with members about maintenance issues.
With every customer message accessible in Front, HubHaus has been able to optimize their customer journey. They created a grading system, and in Front, they can track metrics across every conversation to see how they're doing.
The HubHaus team is also using Front to manage the supply side. When a house comes on the market that they’re interested in buying, a teammate enters the information into Front, which automatically pings the supply team in Slack so they can respond immediately. Since houses in in-demand urban markets only stay on the market for a week at most, this speed is vital. The team can now see 20 houses per week. Prior to using Front, they were only able to catch 10 houses per week.
Kondo sums up the value HubHaus is seeing with Front by saying, “I don’t know what we’d do without Front. We’d be spending much more time training, and we’d be much less efficient.”
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