Survey Says: Excellence!
Hills Property Management wins coveted national award for customer service in real estate from CEL & Associates
[BLUE ASH, Ohio ~ May 30, 2007] National recognition is nothing new to Hills Communities, a regional builder/developer based in suburban Cincinnati frequently ranked amongst the nation’s largest homebuilders. One particular member of the Hills family of companies, however, recently achieved a new level of critical acclaim by capturing a top national customer service award, a first for Hills Property Management and a bellwether of the growth strategy unfolding at the family-owned firm.
Earlier this spring, Hills Property Management was awarded the 2006 National Multifamily Customer Service Award for Excellence in its category by CEL & Associates Inc. of Los Angeles. CEL & Associates is considered the premier firm for a host of customer-based strategies, benchmarking and professional solutions for the real estate industry.
“This is an honor that the people at Hills Property Management, and the entire organization, have earned through hard work and a dedication to service excellence,” said Mr. Christopher E. Lee, president and chief executive officer of CEL & Associates. “The entire team is to be commended, and acknowledged as one of the best in the industry.”
Award winners are selected annually on a highly competitive basis, judged on data supplied by respondents such as the thousands of people who live in Hills’ 15 apartment communities spread across a five-state Midwestern region, a platform Hills is expanding into select South and Southeastern U.S. markets including North Carolina, Tennessee, Georgia, Texas and Florida.
Hills Property Management began participating in the CEL & Associates survey three years ago, after deciding the investment could help Hills improve its dialogue with customers.
“We hired CEL & Associates to independently gather the feedback from our customers, and because they are such a recognized and respected firm serving our industry,” said Mr. Russell “Rusty” Lykes, vice president of Hills Property Management, a division of about 120 employees.
“What we essentially took on was an objective measurement of what we are doing, one that would not only be benchmarked against our similarly sized competitors, but also provide a comparison against some very large organizations as well. We wanted to know where we stood in our customers’ own words,” Lykes said.
The 2006 CEL & Associates survey was taken by about 2.5 million residents from 6,000 apartment communities run by more than 400 property management companies. Besides the biggie, Hills also landed seven communities on the “A List Awards,” an affiliated CEL & Associates customer-service award that recognizes specific apartment communities for service excellence. Hills has placed as many as nine properties on CEL’s A List; four properties have made the A List each of the three years Hills has participated.