How Alto powered up business for Chase Buchanan
Tell us a bit about your operation
We’re spread across eight sites throughout the boroughs of Richmond and Hounslow in Greater London. We’ve got offices in towns such as Twickenham and Richmond, as well as a Head Office and Property Management Centre.
We’ve been in business for over 25 years in sales and lettings – we’ve always done both.
How did you find out about Alto?
Alto’s a really well-known name within the industry. Several members of the team had used Alto previously, and were happy to recommend the platform.
We had confidence in the Vebra brand that preceded Alto, so we wanted to be a part of the growth of the new product.
What made you choose Alto?
Because of the nature of our business, we really needed a software platform that could equally handle sales and lettings.
We looked around the market at competitors, but wish we’d have come to Alto sooner.
In our experience, other suppliers would say they could do both, but then mix up really basic terminology – like referring to a ‘landlord’ as a ‘vendor’! We needed a software partner that knew the industry inside out.
We had just the core sales and lettings functionality at the beginning, before migrating our back office over to Alto two years later.
Did you have data to migrate? How did it go if so?
We had 15 years’ worth of data to migrate, so it was a huge operation for us. As you’d expect, there were minor hiccups along the way, but what Alto said they’d do, they did.
Did you use our on-site training?
We did, and we’ve only got positive feedback for Alto in this respect. Everyone we worked with – and in particular our account manager, Margaret – were on hand to help whenever we needed it.
What do you make of Alto’s design?
It’s quick and simple to navigate around the essentials of the platform. Good reporting facilities to help monitor targets and KPIs, which in turn helps with forecasting and strategy.
And how has the fact that Alto’s cloud-based helped your business?
The connectivity between mobile devices and tablets lets us work effectively. It also means cross-branch sharing is much more efficient, and creates more opportunities on the business front.
We also don’t have to worry about memory or servers, so there’s definitely a cost-saving in terms of hardware requirements. The fact that Alto is cloud-based proved to be a major help when we faced lockdown during the COVID-19 virus. Our staff immediately switched to working from home and the software made this transition pretty much seamless.
Do you make use of Alto’s email syncing functionality?
Emails synced with Outlook really save us time on note-taking and updating client records – time is money, after all. The admin letters/email side of things is also much quicker and more efficient.
How do you find the way Alto handles customer records?
Having records based on properties means all our landlord and applicant information is in one place. This saves our negotiators so much time. The team often uses Alto on their mobile devices while out and about to bring up information for prospects on the spot.
How did adding your back office function to Alto help your business?
Connecting our client accounting to the sales and lettings functionality in the software has really helped us connect two usually separate parts of the business. This is going to have a huge impact on the business in the long run – with big time savings moving forward.
Would you recommend Alto to a fellow agent?
Absolutely – we wouldn’t be giving this testimonial if we weren’t completely happy with the Alto product and support we get from the Alto team!