Ocean Pines General Manager John Bailey has presented the following statement on the new software management system to the Board of Directors and members of the Association at the Regular Board Meeting on Friday, July 27:
The Board was prepared to consider a vote on a new software management system after receiving the presentation and recommendation of the Technology Working Group (TWG). However, effort has been made to extend to Legum & Norman, a property management company, the opportunity to also provide a software management proposal to the Association. L&N was provided the same RFP that we had provided to other software providers and we gave them the same amount of time to respond to the RFP. However, due to the complexity of the requirements in the RFP, L&N eventually turned the full response to the RFP over to ATG.
Note: For those not sure of the corporate structure involved here, Legum & Norman and ATG are actually divisions of Associa, one of, if not the largest property association management companies in the world. L&N was bought out by Associa. ATG is the technology/software arm of Associa.
Because of this change in assignment, we granted ATG an additional week to provide a response to the RFP. Once we received their proposal, we utilized the same evaluation matrix used on the other responses to analyze their version. We provided that review back to ATG, just as we had done for the others, allowing them to indicate whether they agreed or disagreed with our evaluation. We ended up changing two of the evaluations areas at their request, both being a plus for their proposal. However, ATG did not include any pricing, they did not provide reference clients (they will only “coordinate reference calls”), and they did not provide a sample contract. We did have a demo day scheduled for Monday, July 16th, however, ATG indicated at 3 p.m. on the Friday before the Monday demo day that they were not available to come that Monday – thus the reason for canceling the demo day.
To be forthright, the L&N/ATG response was not complete and any further action on their proposal could be interpreted as being unfair to the competitive process. The Board could technically go ahead and proceed to a vote on new management software, as per the recommendation of the TWG.
However, some of the outstanding questions stemming from the ATG proposal may be able to be answered during the process of a demo day. The demo day would be to demonstrate their product, to answer specific questions on how their program works, and to drill down on the items not adequately addressed – including pricing.
Therefore, I would recommend that the Board direct the GM to go ahead and set up such a demo day for ATG as soon as possible and see what they physically bring to the table. Board members and others can be present and see what the gaps are and how ATG plans, or doesn’t plan, to fill them.
Then the new Board gets the “pleasure and honor” to make a decision. The decision on new software needs to be made by the September meeting (October meeting at the latest). It’s either NorthStar or ATG or nothing new for another entire year. If a decision gets delayed past October, then we have great potential to have to deal with all sorts of problems. We would at least have to do whatever is necessary to keep a bad system and supporting arrangement going. Quite frankly, that’s no way to operate.
Recommendation: The Board directs the GM to set up a demo day for ATG as soon as possible.