IUC 2015 – Everything You Wanted to Know (But Were Afraid to Ask)

By | October 1, 2015


In just a few weeks, MRI’s 2015 International Users Conference (IUC) will be underway in Las Vegas!

Is this your first IUC? Don’t worry, we’ll get you up to speed so that you can look like a veteran and get the most out of your IUC experience!

This year’s theme is Breakthrough. Breakthrough reflects the mentality we’ve embraced at MRI since the initial concept debut of Version X at the International Users Conference two years ago.

2015 has been MRI’s year to break the barriers that limit growth and breakthrough to new products that change the way the real estate industry manages its businesses. The IUC is also about embracing what Version X means for you — our clients – functionality and tools that give you the ability to break through the day-to-day chaos and obstacles to get the job done.

Here are some FAQ and answers to get you started:

Q:  Where and when is the IUC 2015?

A: IUC will be held at the Planet Hollywood on the Las Vegas Strip from October 18-21, 2015. The mailing address is: 3667 Las Vegas Boulevard South, Las Vegas, NV 89109.


Q: Why should I attend?

A: Attendees receive two-and-a-half days loaded with sessions on a wide variety of topics, including product road maps, deep dives into functionality, case studies, and more. We will also have a Solutions Room, where representatives of our various functional groups (Services, Support, Sales, Product Management, etc.) as well as members of our Partner Connect program, will be available to discuss with clients their software and business needs. Along with the conference, we have planned multiple networking events which include: a cocktail reception, the MRI Extravaganza Monday night, as well as time to mingle during breaks and at lunch.


Q: Is there a dress code?

A: The dress code for IUC is business casual. Note the conference itself will be entirely indoors, so we suggest dressing for an air-conditioned environment.


Q: Will CPE credits be offered at the IUC?

A: Yes! MRI will provide CPE credits at IUC. Read more about that HERE.


Q: What networking opportunities will be available?

A: We have multiple networking events planned which include a welcome reception on Sunday night; the MRI Extravaganza Monday evening; and you will have time to mingle during breaks and at lunch.


Q: What are some highlights/events I can look forward to?

A: This year we are offering workshop sessions on all of our product lines with additional focus on the features being debuted in MRI’s latest major release, Version X. Many of the highly demanded sessions from last year will be given again this year, allowing clients to attend sessions that they may have missed at previous IUCs. Some of this year’s highlighted sessions are: Integration Strategies, the ever-popular SQL Series, product-specific focus groups, and a lively general session.


Q: Will there be sessions offered on Cougar? Workspeed? Bostonpost? VaultWare?

A: Yes. Sessions are available on each of these products!


Q: Can special meals be arranged if I need vegetarian/kosher/gluten free meals?

A: Yes, during the registration process you may select any applicable dietary needs.


Q: What kind of weather should I expect?

A: Las Vegas weather in October tends to still be warm, but less hot than that of the summer months. The average high is around 80 degrees (Fahrenheit) with lows in the mid-50s. The conference itself will be entirely indoors, so we suggest dressing for an air-conditioned environment.


Q: If I can’t attend, but have already registered, can I transfer my registration to someone else?

A: If you have already registered, please contact MRI so we can help work out a solution to the situation.


Q: Can I bring a guest to the events/classes?

A: Each attendee can register a guest online for the MRI Extravaganza (i.e. the Monday night party) for an additional $150; however, guests cannot attend any sessions. Only clients may attend sessions. 


We can’t wait to see you in a couple weeks in Vegas!

Keep up with the Comps with MRI Market Comps

By | September 24, 2015

Anyone in the multifamily industry knows that you are always going to have competition. Whether the property down the street is offering a first month free concession, or another complex added a brand new pool, there are always going to be new factors to keep in mind when choosing your current rent price.LoftsAtNewMain

For example, Lofts at New Main is a new property in Cleveland that needs to achieve occupancy and revenue targets while staying competitive to the market. The upcoming busy season seems like the perfect time use some new tactics. The options seem endless… provide one free month of parking? Offer prospects a discounted rate? Well, instead of reducing rents or offering concessions in order to maximize occupancy in the building, the manager of Lofts at New Main, Lisa, has keenly tracked the market and held firm on pricing. Lisa decides to take the road less traveled and differentiate the community on service rather than rents. They are able to maintain a higher monthly potential revenue than the direct competition, Villas at Cleveland Park.

MarketCompsIn order to keenly track the market, Lisa used to rely on old methods such as making phone calls to competitive properties, scraping Internet Listing Services, or depending on staff members to accurately conduct these market studies on a monthly basis. These methods were not always reliable, accurate, or compiled in a cadence that would allow for timely decisions to be made about pricing. More importantly, the time it took to conduct market studies detracted from the level of service the community wanted to differentiate themselves on. To better free up herself and her staff, Lisa now employs the use of MRI Market Comps.

MRI Market Comps ensures that rental rates are on-par with the competition and provides the most current market data available. This gives Lisa visibility into the current competitive landscape to help her validate a solid pricing strategy within the local market. It even alerts her and the leasing team when local market conditions deviate, beyond a previously defined threshold, keeping them aware of the latest market fluctuations. The best part is that all this information is automated, giving Lisa and her staff more time to provide high level customer service, instead of calling other properties to rate update and researching online prices.

MRI Market Comps contributes to a holistic vision of property management and is currently helping property managers across the country increase their NOI.

About MRI Market Comps:
MRI Market Comps boasts the industry’s most current competitive apartment rental rate data, providing property management staff the ability to always be one step ahead of their competitors with automated delivery of current comparable apartment market rental data for their self-defined competitive landscape. Available as an add-on to MRI Market Connect, powered by VaultWare, or as a standalone solution, MRI Market Comp’s twice weekly nationwide updates of comparable rental rate data will help you validate your pricing strategy by ensuring that the rates you are asking for align with your local competitive market. You can also use the market survey tool to feed source data to your apartment Revenue Management system.

Looking for a one-time Market Comps report for due diligence research on a potential acquisition or land development? MRI offers a Market Comps Reporting Service exclusively to MRI Software customers. Contact your MRI Software Account Executive to order a report tailored to an address or GPS Coordinates today!


This post features the combined authorship of Ben Berk, Sarah Carver, and Marcy Helms.

Friday’s Failed Product

By | September 18, 2015

Friday’s Failed Product

Our first post about products that (fortunately) never made it out of our Innovation Lab. 


Renewal Offer Roulette

Bring a touch of Vegas into your leasing office! In honor of our 2015 IUC location and in conjunction with the glorious device freedom experienced through MRI Version X, users can now offer residents the ability to wager on their financial future by spinning the Renewal Offer Roulette Wheel™. By simply shaking an iPad, the resident puts their renewal offer in fate’s hands.  Will it be a 2% decrease? A 20% increase???

Round and round the wheel goes–where it stops, nobody knows!

Thankfully, this product never saw the light of day.  Today, MRI users have the ability to fully control how and when renewal offers are extended.  If your business wants to be more agile and optimize your renewal rates, you can now take advantage of recent Renewal Worksheet enhancements by using the new Date Range feature that allows you to run renewals on a weekly basis instead of by period.

You can also leverage our direct integration with our Revenue Management partner, LRO.  Additionally, you can take renewals one step further with MRI’s Online Renewals and make the lease signing experience for your residents easy and efficient. Sounds good, right?

All this is much more useful than our failed product, the Renewal Offer Roulette Wheel™. If you want to read more about successful products that have come from our Innovation Lab, head on over to our recent blog post on MRI’s Innovation Days.


MRI Product Developers Give Back to Community at Cleveland GiveCamp

By | September 10, 2015

MRI Product Development team members spent a weekend in July using their creativity and technology talents to help nonprofit organizations in nGC2eed.

Cleveland GiveCamp is a weekend-long event where software developers, designers, database administrators, project managers and creative professionals donate their time to create software and web-based applications for non-profit organizations.

This year’s event took place at the LeanDog Boat (former Hornblowers) and Burke Lakefront Airport on the shores of Lake Erie July 17-19.

The event, which is entirely volunteer-driven allows participants to literally ‘camp-out’ (in tents) while completing projects over the weekend. At the end of the weekend, completed source codes are handed over to the nonprofits (for free) and the nonprofits maintain the code moving forward.
Projects range anywhere from data collection applications and website creation, to mobile websites and mobile apps.

“It was an honor to work with passionate people who would spend their weekend helping out the community instead of enjoying the nice summer weather,” said MRI Software Engineer Dan Martin. “It was a great opportunity for the folks at MRI to be able to share their talent for a good cause.”

The Cleveland GiveCamp event is part of a national GiveCamp initiative, which was founded by a Microsoft executive in 2007. Cleveland GiveCamp is one of nearly 30 GiveCamps throughout the country benefiting hundreds of nonprofits every year.

GiveCamp first came to Cleveland in in 2010 with more than 100 volunteers, 21 nonprofits and nearly $250,000 worth of work donated during the course of the weekend. It has since grown to include more than 200 volunteers, 25 nonprofits and $625,000 in free development work.



For MRI Employees, the Road to Success Begins with ‘Innovation’

By | September 3, 2015

All it takes is one idea.

If you were given the chance to step away from your desk for 48 hours for the opportunity to cultivate that one idea, what could happen?

For MRI Software employees at the company’s Solon headquarters, it has led to the development of game-changing solutions that have driven the company’s innovative engine.

‘Innovation Days’ was created by MRI Software in 2013 as a way to allow Product Development employees to develop software ideas that could manifest into either an internal or external solution that could benefit the company’s operations.

Since its inception, Innovation Days has led to some of the company’s most esteemed software features, including the company’s flagship ‘Version X’ solution, as well as other market leading offerings such as API Toolkit, MRI•GO, and Single-Sign-On (SSO).

The idea behind ‘Innovation Days’ is based on a concept called a ‘FedEx Day’ – where employees participate in a 24-hour event. It is called FedEx Day, because employees have to ‘deliver’ overnight, like the parcel delivery company. MRI took the concept and expanded it into a 2-day event

“We went with an entire day dedicated to the work, and a separate day to demo the projects to the rest of the organization and gather feedback. We also introduced the idea of “sponsors”, where other departments could sponsor the event and submit their ideas or pain points in the product that they’d like to fix,” said Dan Martin, a Software Engineer at MRI and Innovation Days coordinator.

And the idea has grown. Not only are Product Development employees taking part, but team members from all across the company are encouraged to submit ideas. Martin says that participation from the Product Development department is up to 95 percent, and that members of the company’s Senior Leadership Team are even getting in on the action.

“The support and participation from the rest of the organization has been encouraging,” said Martin. “People are constantly asking how they can get involved or how they can help improve the event. There are a lot of questions on when the next event takes place and a lot of excitement around many of the projects.”

For a company whose mantra is “Driving Innovation” – what better vehicle to drive than the creative minds of the employees who know your product, inside and out.

For MRI, ‘Innovation Days’ is also driving results. According to Martin, many projects end up either becoming part of a product, or are used internally almost immediately.

Not bad for a day’s work.

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