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Digital resident communications and housing services as part of everyday life

Part of the daily life of a Helsinki family

Hyttinen’s family of six lives in Helsinki in a rental housing company where residents use all of One4all’s digital resident communications products and services: digital notice boards, the PNTmobile resident application which serves as a housing service platform, and booking calendars for the housing company’s premises and services. The family moved to their current home in 2019 and has now for a few years used the aforementioned One4all digital resident communications and housing services solutions as part of their daily routine. We asked them how they use the services offered and what kind of user experiences they have gained from them.

PNTmobile resident application – often used and always available

From the outset, it becomes clear that the PNTmobile resident app in particular is an active part of the daily lives of both adults in the family and is browsed or used anytime, anywhere. They book their sauna shifts, washing machines, dryers and club rooms from the booking calendar connected to the application, and read electronic bulletins and browse the operating instructions from the home folder. The app also has a flea market and messaging and polling features, but neither of them has used them. “Our condominium’s flea market is pretty passive and there has been no need for messages so far,” says Jonna, the family’s mother.

“The electronic home folder is really convenient, I like it a lot. I may well be shopping in the store when I remember having to check something in one of the instructions, like the size of the stove lamp. It is convenient that all the instructions for use of the apartment and the contents of the home folder can be read through the application and the information is always up-to-date, ”says Jonna.

Conveniently with your own code

The family actively uses their weekly sauna option included in the rent, and reservations are often made every week, depending on the family’s schedule and program. Sauna shifts can always be booked from the booking calendar for a certain number of times, depending on the settings defined by the landlord in the application. The building’s sauna shifts can be booked a month in advance, and Antti, the father of the family, says that when you are awake and follow the announcements, you can often book the shift you want. The housing association always communicates to the residents about the periods of services to be booked through the application.

“It is convenient when, at the end of the working day, you can book a sauna shift from work, even for the same evening. There is no need to call here during office hours, or commit to the same weekly sauna shift for at least six months, ”says Antti.
“And no one can book for themselves that Saturday night’s best turn, it’s wonderful!” Jonna continues.

Weekly, Hyttinen also book a laundry room with washing machines and dryers through the resident application. From the booking calendar of the application, you can see which flight is currently available and you can make more than one booking. Both adults in the family have their own IDs and pin codes for doors to the app. “My own pin code is now conveniently in the top corner of the app. In the previous version, it was somewhere at the bottom, I remember, and I never seemed to find it. Good that it changed! ” Jonna mentions. “Sure, you learn to remember a pin code when you’re actively using it, but it’s always forgotten at some point when there’s a lot to remember anyway,” she continues.

Digital booking calendar makes it easy to book a common area

The building also has a common club room and a shared bike that can be reserved for their use via the booking calendar. The club room has been used by the family in many ways: as the mother’s gym, the firstborn’s study space and collectively as an evasive space for the whole family, ie. when it is desired to stay away for a few hours while the cleaning lady does her job. The club space of the condominium will also be reserved for their first born’s celebration in the fall, as all guests would not fit at the same table in their own home. “I’ve put a reminder on the calendar that about a month earlier, when the September bookings open, I’ll be ready to make the reservation,” Jonna says. The shared bike, on the other hand, is a brand new service in the condo. They haven’t had time to try it yet, but the booking has already been made.

The booking calendar has a separate booking slot for the washer and the dryer.

A quick glance at the highlights on the digital notice board

Antti says that he always reads bulletins and news from the digital display placed in the stairwell while waiting for the elevator and continues to read bulletins from the application if he notices something on the screen for a while. Jonna says she always glances at the weather and the tram schedule on the digital board as she leaves, even though she mainly walks on foot. The children of the family are not too interested in the digital board, as they are not very interested in the affairs of the housing association so far. They do not have their own IDs for the application, as the resident application is intended for adults and its user IDs are only given to those who are in the lease agreement. However, it has been necessary to get acquainted with the affairs of the housing association to the extent that, at the request of the parents, the rescue plan has been reviewed among the family and they have thought together about what to do in the event of a fire.

Easy to use, but there is always room for improvement

Although the family’s experiences with both the resident application and the booking calendars are mainly positive, they also have a few negative experiences. “At some point, the sauna bookings didn’t update normally. The calendar seemed free, even though I had just booked a shift. Eventually I uninstalled the whole app and reloaded it, and then it started working again. That’s how all those applications always work, ”says Antti. “And sometimes the bulletins might suggest to click on an address, but the link has been forgotten. It’s annoying,” Jonna says. “This app is surprisingly easy to use however, even for a non-digital person like me,” Jonna continues, laughing.

Overall, the family has been very pleased with the service provided by their housing association, which really came as an extra surprise to them. “I read something about the resident app in the rental ad, but couldn’t figure it out until after we had moved, then I realized what it was all about. This has been really handy, and many acquaintances have bee jealous about the service when I have even booked a laundry shift from my mobile phone in the café! ” Jonna says.

A few development suggestions immediately came to mind. “It would be nice to get a calendar link directly from your app to your phone’s calendar. Now you have to add it there separately and that step is usually left undone, ” says Antti. Jonna, on the other hand, would like to have a waiting list for bookings, “that is, if someone canceled their booked shift, you could receive a notification about the availability and then book it yourself”.

Actually both of the qualities they desire are already under process and upcoming. All One4all services are developed whenever there is a desire for new features and it is possible to implement them, so you should always give feedback. One4all’s services are designed for both residents and the management of the housing provider, and all development work aims to improve the user experience of both parties. If you would like to share your own user experience with us, either from a resident or administration perspective, or if you have a development suggestion in mind, we would love to hear it. Contact us by e-mail to [email protected] and we will arrange a joint meeting!

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