6 Reasons Why Quality Student Accommodation Needs a Parcel System
How do you define quality student accommodation? We describe the best PBSAs as developments that fully cater to the needs of student residents while also improving efficiency.
Package management used to be the bane of existence for front-of-house staff, couriers and the students themselves, but effective parcel systems have changed that for the better.
If your development is struggling to handle deliveries, you should look into revamping your approach. We explain the main reasons why a modern and efficient method is needed.
1. Students Expect Convenience
Students expect a lot more from their accommodation these days. Halls of residence don’t meet the needs of today’s students, as there is a stronger emphasis on forming communities and creating a life of convenience. This has led to the rise of PBSA in the UK.
But there’s a lot of competition between developments.
Every operator needs to find a way of making their building more appealing than the others. A mark of quality student accommodation, an effective parcel management system means students will never miss a delivery. Important textbooks, accommodation furnishings and gifts from home are safely stored downstairs to be picked up at the student’s convenience.
2. Packages are Kept Safe & Secure
While taking in parcels for students is convenient for them, it’s often a different story for you and your staff. Accepting packages leads to problems such as:
A disorganised work station
Health & safety issues (tripping and piles falling)
These issues are only made worse at peak times such as the start of the academic year and Christmas. But quality student accommodation always has a way of mitigating risks.
As an example, installing a parcel room in your PBSA ensures parcels are secure through:
One-time-use access codes
24–hour CCTV coverage
A full electronic logging system that registers:
Who has entered the room
At what time the room was opened
The user’s contact details
Package security is already a necessity, and the rising popularity of online shopping will continue to prove this. An electronic parcel room shows students that you won’t tolerate the mishandling of their personal items.
3. Quality Student Accommodation is Sustainable
The Earth has dwindling resources, and PBSA can help to create a more sustainable delivery system — something which greatly appeals to the younger generations.
When a package can’t be delivered, the courier has to take it with them, and weight has a direct influence on how much fuel transport vans burn. A parcel room solves the last mile delivery problem, as no package has to go undelivered.
Parcel rooms are also a highly valued amenity that use very little energy. They don’t have to be constantly lit or temperature regulated, which keeps consumption to a minimum.
4. An Effective Parcel System Lightens the Workload
It can be tough working in a student accommodation development. There’s always a great deal of work to do and students to help, so it’s no wonder staff can feel drained. The added pressures of sorting deliveries only adds to their burnout.
In PBSA, a package management system such as a parcel room or electronic logging software saves your front-of-house team countless hours every week.
Packages can be logged in as little as five seconds thanks to our software’s Optical Character Recognition, and a parcel room gives couriers a safe place to store deliveries without having to approach your team constantly for help.
With pressure in one area taken from your staff’s shoulders, it means they can concentrate on the most important aspect of their job; the student residents.
5. Quality Student Accommodation is Modern
Quality student accommodation doesn’t just provide more convenience, it uses the most modern approach to solve everyday issues. Heating and lighting systems that can be controlled by smartphones are just one key example of how residential living is being modernised.
In today’s world, there’s no need for lengthy delivery check-ins when software can register items so much faster. There’s no need for queues at the front desk when packages can be stored safely and guarded by technology in an accessible room.
Your development needs to be able to compete with the PBSAs on the market. Having a modern approach to parcel management will do just that.
6. A Key Amenity for Tours & Retention
When students come to view your development, they want to be wowed, they want to be impressed and see that you have taken the time to cover all their needs.
Being able to show potential residents a secure package room that ensures they’ll never miss another delivery is a key selling point. Nearly 3 billion packages were shipped across the UK in the 2019/2020 fiscal year, and student textbooks, course supplies and accommodation furnishings account for a great deal of those delivered items.
The best thing about having an effective parcel system in place is that almost every student will make use of it. The majority won’t be going to the on-site gym, not everyone wants to play pool or air hockey in the games room, but most — if not all — students will be buying items online.
People only want to pay for what they use. Quality student accommodation isn’t about putting every conceivable amenity in your development. If you simply provide students with services they want and will use, you will increase retention rates, as you’re giving them true value for money.
What About Package Lockers?
Package lockers are a bad idea in any residential setting, not just PBSA. Quality student accommodation means every aspect of the development has to run at peak efficiency, and lockers create more hassle than they’re worth.
In residential buildings, bulky, company-branded lockers:
Take up too much space and become an eyesore, which ruins a welcoming lobby
Don’t use the space available effectively (should a small package get a locker over a large item?)
Still need input from your staff once all the lockers are full
Will require a second storage space for overfill
There are no upsides to lockers in PBSA, so make sure to explore more effective parcel management methods.
Improve Your Parcel System With Parcel SafePlace
Parcel SafePlace specialises in implementing the smartest and most efficient package management systems. Our technology, experience and understanding of the issues your staff and residents face means we have the skills and knowledge to upgrade your PBSA into being the highest quality student accommodation development.