Kiosks become an integral part of business model at Berks Storage
Pennsylvania self-sorage operator expands its’ use of technology and discovers multiple benefits to automating its’ facilities.
December 7, 2017 – OpenTech Alliance, the leading technology and automation company in the self-storage industry, has with teamed up with Berks Storage, a Pennsylvania self-storage operator to expand its’ use of automation technology. With a total of 5 locations, including 2 newly constructed facilities, Berks presently has about 2,265 units with roughly 300,000 square feet of rentable space and growing. The firm has been automating its’ business in order to better serve its customers and to help keep payroll expenses down.
Presently, Berks has self-service kiosks at three of its’ locations, and has two more on order for its’ new facilities. According to Dave Paul, Managing Partner of Berks: “We’ve completely integrated the INSOMNIAC Kiosks into our operation, and the more channels we offer our customers to rent a unit or pay their bills, the better. We want customers to be able to rent or pay online, in-person, through the call center or the kiosk 24/7 – whatever is easier for them.”
Although 2 of the facilities run essentially unmanned, Paul says the kiosks tend to get used even when a manager is available: “Our customers are really into the technology… especially the millennials. Even with staff onsite, they might stop by the kiosk just to buy a lock. There’s a big convenience factor at work here. These days, convenience for our tenants and prospective tenants is paramount. We want to give them the ability to interact with us when and how they want to. The self-service technology from OpenTech has enabled us to do this, and the people at OpenTech have been a big help in getting it all working together.”
According to Robert Chiti, President and CEO of OpenTech Alliance, the effect of the kiosks on Berks business model isn’t too surprising: “We’ve seen this many times over with facilities who install our technology… when a company embraces and integrates these systems in their operations to improve service levels and make their business more easily accessible, this tends to lead to other positive outcomes as well, like increased occupancy rates and decreased costs. It’s a classic win-win-win situation.”
Paul says he is especially keen on the reporting available from the kiosk. “For payments and rentals it collects everything there is to know, and makes it really easy to get a clear picture of what’s happening on a daily, weekly, and monthly basis. It actually works very well for us. It’s just a part of our everyday business.” Paul also says he appreciates the accuracy and completeness when a customer signs a lease. The kiosk doesn’t forget to collect all the necessary information, deposits and signatures, and it makes everything consistent and easily accessible – I wouldn’t build a new facility without one.”