Common is a Trailblazer

This pioneer in co-living keeps its operations running smoothly with Salesforce.

 
130 employees
Salesforce customer since 2017

20x

more property tours scheduled

 

Common makes city living a breeze with Salesforce.

Finding a new place to live can be stressful, especially when you’re renting in an expensive city and need to find roommates. Apartment hunting too often feels like a cross between a second job and an endless string of blind dates. Fortunately for city dwellers across the nation, Common is here, and it's using Salesforce to make co-living easier.

Founded in 2015, Common is a residential brand that designs, operates, and enables apartments for shared living. Headquartered in New York City, Common currently operates across seven cities, with a portfolio of 40 properties expected to at least double by the end of 2020. “We make the experience of living with roommates as easy as possible,” Eric Rodriguez, VP of Operations, said. “Everyone who lives at a Common home goes through background and credit checks, and our homes are fully furnished apartments.” Common even manages your utilities and supplies shared goods like paper towels and toilet paper, so there’s less for you and your roommates to worry about.

 

Common is a Trailblazer in urban co-living.

Creating an easy co-living experience for its residents means the team at Common manages a sort of supply chain for living. From securing real estate partnerships to designing and furnishing individual units to matching prospective renters to the right home and roommates, Common does it all. That’d be challenging enough in one major market, but Common is growing. As they began expanding to serve more renters across more cities, the company’s various teams realized they needed a better way to work together.

Before adopting Salesforce in 2018, Common suffered from problems that are all too typical in growing businesses. For one, the sales team was getting bogged down by manual processes that worked well enough in the early days, but slowed considerably at scale.

“One of the things that was really hard for our sales team was that they would need to manually follow up with every single one of the people that was looking to live at our properties,” Rodriguez said. As Common scaled, that meant pursuing thousands upon thousands of new leads — a difficult task, to say the least. Sales Cloud lets Common automate parts of the follow-up and nurture process, freeing reps to focus on high value leads while entering other prospects into an automated buyer’s journey.

 

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Salesforce gives us a really robust understanding of what's happening in our sales funnels that we didn't have before.”

Eric Rodriguez | VP of Operations
 

Sharing is caring, especially at home.

Another problem was that information was getting trapped in silos, creating issues when prospective customers converted to paying members. Combining Sales Cloud with Service Cloud let information flow so everyone inside Common has a complete 360-degree view of each customer. “The baton passes from the sales team to the member experience team, and they’re not starting from scratch. They know who the member is and they can cater to that person’s experience because of Salesforce,” Rodriguez said.

Salesforce helps Common capture information about every lead starting from when they first visit the company’s website. Building member profiles so early in the customer journey makes it all the easier to match them with the right homes, and provide the best ongoing member service after they’re settled. “We have all the information about what they were looking for in a place to live so that we can make their experience better once they move in,” Rodriguez said.

Heroku also plays a key role in keeping Common’s operations running smoothly. The cloud platform lets Common’s developers build, deploy, and scale new features without worrying about the technical infrastructure itself. For a small business with limited resources available at any given time, that’s a huge burden lifted. “We don’t have to manage infrastructure or worry about our service being up because we know Heroku will take care of it for us,” Adam Gotterer, Chief Technology Officer said. “That saves us money on DevOps folks, too.”

One Heroku add-on, Heroku Scheduler, plays a particularly important role in Common’s technology stack, driving automated scheduling of property tours across the country. “It’s the biggest integration that touches all parts of the business,” Gotterer said. The broader ability to extend Common’s product functionality through AppExchange is also proving key to the company’s drive to continually improve its member experience.

Leverage the power and flexibility to support a growing community.

It’s no secret that customer service is a great differentiator for businesses nowadays. For Common, the customer experience starts when a prospective member first visits its website, and continues well beyond their signing a lease and moving into a new home. As the company grows to add new properties across more cities, continuing to deliver a great experience to all its members is key to continued success. “If you don’t provide a great customer experience, your customers will go somewhere else,” Rodriguez said.

Salesforce helps Common offer a great experience through all phases of its members’ journeys. Automated lead nurturing, shared 360-degree views of the customer, and the worry-free power of Heroku combine to give Common the platform it needs to support a growing community of members looking for a place to call home.

 

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