• August 6, 2020

How communities are connecting during the COVID-19 crisis - Odessa American: Tech Talk & Innovation

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How communities are connecting during the COVID-19 crisis

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Posted: Tuesday, April 28, 2020 12:01 pm

(BPT) - During the uncertainty of the COVID-19 crisis, people are searching for ways to connect with experts, co-workers, friends, neighbors and their community. They are accomplishing this by using technology including virtual meetings, webinars and conference call services.

Everyone is making sacrifices during this time and adjusting their regular routines and habits. TownSq, an all-in-one communication app used in the community management industry, has analyzed the platform's trends during the crisis.

Residents take guidelines seriously

The app's analysis found that access-controlled communities’ guest invitations dropped more than 50% in the first week alone. Residents are forgoing seeing friends and family and canceling events to ensure they are doing their part to flatten the curve and slow the spread of COVID-19.

Another interesting statistic is the drastic increase in package deliveries to communities. As COVID-19 concerns began growing in late February and early March, deliveries to communities started to increase to levels generally seen around the holiday season. Homeowners are social distancing while maintaining necessary supplies and avoiding crowded grocery stores and markets.

Neighbors help neighbors

The World Health Organization has reported that certain groups have an elevated risk of becoming seriously ill from COVID-19, including people over 65 years of age and those with underlying medical conditions.

As a result, solidarity is growing organically in communities. Younger residents are offering to help with things like picking up groceries or other essentials for residents that are in the high-risk group. That shows an altruistic desire for people to naturally want to help those that need it most during these times.

Technology assists in effective communication

As more strict guidelines get put into place, and more people are operating from home, individuals and companies are looking for new tools to help improve communication during the crisis. In communities and HOAs, this essential need is equally present; effective communication is the key to making sure every resident is informed properly and up to date on important community news. The app has seen an increased trend of board members and managers publishing 92% more critical announcements and documents during this time.

“Announcement growth is directly tied to managers and boards making relevant information available to all residents in real-time. The need for urgent news has increased, so we are seeing the results of the platform accommodating that need,” said Luis Lafer-Sousa of TownSq.

Virtual tools facilitate connections

From the beginning of the COVID-19 crisis, the app has tracked a dramatic increase in platform engagement. Residents have taken social distancing seriously with a 45% decrease in visitor requests and an uptick in package deliveries, neighbors helping neighbors, and vital communications from boards of directors to residents.

“We see this exponential growth as a strong sign of effective communication among our customers. It shows that people are looking for new ways to connect and help each other during this time,” said Lafer-Sousa. “Communication between residents is surging with an outpouring of support for those most at-risk in communities. For homeowners, they understand the importance of community connection and recognize the value of virtual tools to facilitate those connections.”

It is crucial to stay connected during times of crisis. That is why the app is offering features like real-time updates, a resident forum, targeted communications and more free for 90 days. To learn more, visit https://learn.townsq.io/90-day-free-trial.

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