For years I have been struck by the irony of the connection between communication and community falling asunder at the doors of apartment blocks.
If there was anywhere that not only needed an internal communications system – and probably contained higher than average numbers of people able to grasp the fundamentals – it would be modern apartment blocks.
People have experimented with Facebook pages and dedicated websites – but as soon as the people who set them up get fed up with having to run it, or cop more than their fair share of abuse from the block’s whingers – it all falls apart.
Then, a couple of years ago, along came Stratabox (one of our sponsors).
This week, I went along to co-founder Paul Chevrot’s house so who could explain what Stratabox is, how it works and who’s it for.
Basically, it’s an online platform where you can put all your records, by-laws and basic building information, plus you can have virtual committee meetings, vote on issues, and raise complaints about things that need fixed or even neighbours who are misbehaving.
You can book a move in or out of the block or use of facilities, discuss issues long before there’s a vote, and chat about the outcomes of decisions that have been made.
You can alert your strata committee or strata manager to problems or canvass other owners about possible solutions (rather than hoping someone on the strata committee actually understands, rather than having your choices limited by the extent of their knowledge and experience.
One of the interesting things that emerged from our chat was that Paul doesn’t expect every subscriber to use every aspect of the platform. Just because it has everything you might need to help your committee run your block smoothy and efficiently, doesn’t mean you have to use all its facilities.
You can sign up for a free trial of Stratabox right HERE or by clicking on the ad on the Flat Chat pages.
By the way, apologies for the sound quality on the recording which occasionally makes me sound as if I’m at the bottom of a well. Poor acoustics, inadequate equipment and pilot error all contributed.
It’ll be better next week, I promise.