Category: Survey Results

ONE MINUTE of your time could win you a $100 Target Store Shopping Spree!

Who doesn't love Target? The place you go to pick up something quick and come out with a full cart.

Take just one minute to complete the 2-question, annual NorthstarMLS survey, and you will be entered into a random drawing to win one of four $100 Target gift cards. 

But even more importantly, you will make your voice heard

NorthstarMLS staff and Board members read every survey comment to help plan the focus of resources for 2020. Participate in this planning effort–evaluate NorthstarMLS and help make it better–we want your opinion!

Click Here and Answer the Two Questions Now!

Annual Survey Results Are In

We recently completed our 10th annual Service Quality Index Survey of NorthstarMLS subscribers. I look at the Survey results as NorthstarMLS’s most valuable management tool for helping us be a better provider of support for your businesses. We not only look at the ratings in terms of trending (good and not as good as we want), but we read all of the comments that so many of you take the time to write, and use these to add context and texture to the actual numbers. Combined, these insights direct our activities so that we can increase our value to our customers by doing things that matter to you. This is my opportunity to thank all of those who responded to the survey and to say we’re a better MLS because of you. Please take a couple minutes to watch the video recap of the results. You can let us know your thoughts and suggestions any time of year by messaging us at help@northstarmls.com. John Mosey President & CEO, NorthstarMLS
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Service Quality Index Survey Results

“We’re building what they call a ‘reservoir of good will’ with our customers. They trust us to do the right thing,” – John Mosey

NorthstarMLS recently conducted its ninth annual Service Quality Index Survey. The survey collected overall subscriber feedback. Recipients were selected on a completely random basis. The results we received this year, and in the past, are invaluable to us and keep us in line with what is working, what needs to be adjusted and what subscribers want to see in the future.

This year we broke down, evaluated and summarized the 2014 SQI Survey results in an interactive online magazine for your viewing pleasure — it looks really nice on smart phones and tablets, too! Take a look at how your colleagues rated the NorthstarMLS system and core services. There’s also a a brief message from incoming 2015 RMLS Board Chair, Peter Sparr. Take a look at our 2014 SQI Survey magazine now!

Click the magazine cover (above) to view the SQI Survey Magazine
(Also is viewable on tablets and smart phones)

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Service Quality Index Survey Results

“Achieving excellence is good. Sustaining excellence is great,” – Anonymous

NorthstarMLS recently conducted its eighth annual Service Quality Index Survey. The survey garnered overall subscriber feedback. Recipients were selected on a completely random basis. The results we received this year, and in the past, are invaluable to us and keep us in line with what is working, what needs to be adjusted and what subscribers want to see in the future.

This year we broke down the 2013 SQI Survey results in an interactive online magazine for your viewing pleasure. Take a look at how your colleagues rated the NorthstarMLS system and core services. There’s also a a short video message from 2014 Board Chair, Claire Killen. Take a look at our SQI Survey magazine now!

NorthstarMLS 2013 SQI Survey Results

Click the magazine cover (above) to view the SQI Survey Magazine
(Also is viewable on tablets and smart phones)

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SQI Survey Results: Public Records/Tax

Beginning with our first Service Quality survey in 2006, we asked the question: “How important is Public Records Tax data to your business?” When 98% of respondents said that tax data was either “extremely” or “very important,” we were both surprised and pleased.

“For a long time prior to incorporating this question in the survey, we had been aware of weaknesses in our tax product,” said NorthstarMLS President & CEO, John Mosey. “In 2004, we bought our tax provider and took on the responsibility for improving the quality and usefulness of the data as a core function of the company. The 2006 survey certainly validated our reasons for having bought PLAT System Services, but also told us that we had a ways to go before it ‘measured up.’ On a positive note, each year since we began measuring customer satisfaction ratings of accuracy, completeness and functionality of tax information, it has been better than the year before.”

Early last year, NorthstarMLS launched the Realist system, a public records database that integrates with NorthstarMLS Matrix listings data to provide in-depth property and ownership data, market information, maps with detailed property information layers, as well as market trends. These vastly superior features and capabilities that Realist delivers can help agents become more effective and more valuable to their clients.

This year’s survey results revealed that 65% of respondents rated the tax data function — in terms of accuracy, completeness and functionality — between a 4 or 5 rating of “very good” to “excellent.” Tax ratings have improved each year since our first survey. Factor in the “Satisfactory” or 3-Rating, and 86% of respondents say our tax data is meeting their business needs. We hope that this is a sign that our customers are more and more confident and comfortable in using our tax information to help their businesses and that our investments in this area are paying dividends where they count.

New Updates for 2013

Annual tax updates came later than usual in 2012 because of a Realist system change. We expect updates to be back on track for 2013.

“Realist went through some growing pains last year that were exacerbated by changes they made to their technology architecture during 2012. They tell me that the worst of their conversion trauma is behind them and that they will be back performing at the level that has made them the premier provider of property data in the country, as 2013 unfolds, said Mosey. “That means that you will have updated tax data at a much improved pace this year. It is my hope that their improved performance on the data collection and updating from the counties, combined with all of the other features and capabilities Realist delivers will result in a continuation of our trajectory of improved Service Quality survey results when we ask, ‘How are we doing on tax?’”

42% of Survey Respondents Add Written Comments
The SQI Survey allowed recipients to submit written comments. Here are a few that relate to MLS public records and tax information:

• “I am pleased with the improvement – I use Realist daily.”
• “I really appreciate the new features of Realist — extremely helpful.”
• “I love this (Realist) feature!”

For help using Realist, we offer these resources:
• Click the “Help” tab at the top left of the Realist screen
• Watch brief tutorials on the Realist YouTube Channel
• Check out our Realist FAQ document
• Our announcement about tax year vs assessment year

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SQI Survey Results: Rules and Regulations

Ask any agent/appraiser and they will say there is nothing more frustrating to their clients and themselves than realizing they’ve relied on incorrect MLS information. In order to ensure every NorthstarMLS customer has the most current, accurate and complete property data, MLS rules and regulations have been created and will be enforced on an as needed basis. These guidelines ensure professional data sharing and warrant cooperative behaviors between all MLS users. By doing so, users can maximize their value to their customers and help keep the MLS an effective real estate business tool.

“Our staff works hard at maintaining a reliable database and to prevent listing infractions. But the success of these efforts depend greatly everyone’s cooperation,” said Michael Bisping, Director of Customer Service, who oversees the Rules Department which consists of three technicians that respond to nearly 500 notices from other agents every week. “Everyone in the NorthstarMLS community is in this together. If we all do our part to cooperate, it will reduce inaccurate information and surely make it easier on everyone to reach their real estate goals more efficiently and effectively.”

SQI Survey results revealed that 74% of respondents have an “excellent” or “good” understanding of the current MLS rules that are in place. Even the most adept agent can make an innocent mistake every now and then. But if agents comply with these four simple rules, nearly half of NorthstarMLS Compliance Notices and Fines would disappear:

1. Enter a listing within 2 business days of the listing contract effective date;
2. Enter a photo within 2 business days of entering the listing;
3. Ensure all public fields and supplements are free from agent and 3rd party promotion;
4. Update pending listings after the closing or when the closing is postponed.

“Ninety five percent of all notices to correct a listing or cure a violation result in no fine, or I waive it,” Bisping said. NorthstarMLS President and CEO, John Mosey, is frequently quoted as saying that someone has to be “bound and determined” to get fined by the MLS. These numbers show that most of our service’s users want to do what is right.

If you have any questions about MLS rules, please contact the NorthstarMLS Rules Department at 651-251-3210, 8-5 PM (Monday-Friday). You can also check the NorthstarMLS “Rules Roundup” page. A new feature where we will periodically spotlight an MLS Rules topic to educate users on some of the most commonly misunderstood issues of the NorthstarMLS system. Are you on Facebook? The “Rules Roundup” page can also be accessed through the NorthstarMLS Facebook page.

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SQI Survey Results: Data Accuracy

Data accuracy and listings quality is important across the online real estate space, prompting many written comments from our SQI Survey respondents. Ensuring the most accurate and clean data for our customers can be challenging and is an ongoing process.

“If I were to put my finger on the one thing that exasperates our customers most, it would be the submission of incomplete and inaccurate listing content that is also not updated properly,” said John Mosey, NorthstarMLS CEO and President. “Our service is intended to foster cooperation that leads to listings getting sold and commissions getting paid.”

We have come a long way in optimizing our MLS listing and tax data. For example, the elimination of misspellings and abbreviations with standard pick lists for cities and lake names. No more searching through 30-40 different spellings of “Minneapolis” or “Lake Minnetonka.”

“We’re all about data integrity and making sure that when people search, they have the best information possible,” said NorthstarMLS Director of IT, Ed Newman. “We developed an application to look at listings daily, find problems, and report them for us to follow up on. That’s been extended with ‘Report a problem with this listing’ feature” [a link below the main photo of every listing that users can click to ANONYMOUSLY report wrong data on a listing].

You can help! List your property accurately and completely. If you see a listing that has wrong information, report the listing to the NorthstarMLS Rules Department. You’ll be helping yourself, your seller/buyer and everyone else using the NorthstarMLS system by ensuring each listing is as accurate, complete and up-to-date as possible.

“Careless or lazy agents undermine the value of the MLS. They waste other agent’s time. They cause consumers to question our competence and professionalism. And, particularly foolish, they submit info to the service that is useless for appraisal purposes. Try to get financing on your sale without an appraisal,” said Mosey.

42% of Survey Respondents Add Written Comments
The SQI Survey allowed recipients to submit written comments. Here are a few that relate to MLS data accuracy:

• “It would be nice to have more policing of incorrect data and listings.”
• “Accuracy has more to do with agent submissions than with the actual program.”
• “It’s only as accurate as the listing agent.”

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Survey Results: NorthstarMLS Help Desk

Had a question or concern with the NorthstarMLS system last year? Hopefully you contacted the NorthstarMLS Help Desk. Perhaps you were one of the 89 % that rated the overall service quality of the NorthstarMLS help desk as “excellent” in our recent Service Quality Index (SQI) survey.

The help desk consists of five technicians who answer an average of nearly 700 calls and emails weekly. “The help desk staff was excited and proud of the survey results,” said Michael Bisping, Director of Customer Service. “We strive to make every customer experience exemplary.” Calls range from easily resolved issues such as a forgotten password, to more complicated issues such as security software that blocks NorthstarMLS from working properly on a laptop.

Survey results revealed that 22% of respondents communicate with the help desk at least 1-4 per month. We hope that this is a sign that our customers are more and more confident and comfortable in using our service and its many features.

42% of Survey Respondents Submitted Written Comments
The SQI Survey allowed recipients to submit written comments. Here are a few that relate to the NorthstarMLS Help Desk.

• “I think the service and quality are excellent. Help desk is outstanding.”
• “Help desk has always been friendly and HELPFUL! (I’ve used many help desks that are nowhere near your caliber!) Thanks!”
• “Overall, I find MLS very user friendly and the help desk is always very helpful.”

Not all written comments were as favorable, but these are far and away most representative of how the 89% of respondents felt.

If you need assistance, the NorthstarMLS Help Desk is available 8-5 PM (Monday-Friday) at 651-251-5456 (or toll free 1-877-251-5455). We’re also available by email athelp@northstarmls.com. You can also check the NorthstarMLS “Tip of the Week” page, which is updated on Monday’s with quick tips on commonly asked questions concerning functionality of the entire NorthstarMLS system. Are you on Facebook? The “Tips of the Week” page can also be accessed through the NorthstarMLS Facebook page.

We will be breaking down the rest of the survey results throughout the course of the next few weeks. Stay tuned.

A Look at the 2012 NorthstarMLS SQI Survey Results
• This Infographic visually summarizes the 2012 NorthstarMLS SQI Survey Results
• In SQI survey, the most common written comments, both positive and critical, were regarding MLS system change. Check out what some customers said regarding MLS System Functionality and Change.

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Survey Results: System Functionality/Change

It was Jim Rohn (Entrepreneur & author) who uttered, “Your life does not get better by chance, it gets better by change.” In our recent Service Quality Index (SQI) survey, the most common written comments, both positive and critical, were regarding MLS system changes. Change can be positive, but also disruptive. We’re never going to change anything that isn’t intended to ultimately improve the lives of our customers. Even though sometimes, the MLS system changes can feel unnecessary, or too much, too often.

“There are new agents entering this business every day that want and need the tools of today and tomorrow – to look after the buyers and sellers of today and tomorrow,” said NorthstarMLS President and CEO, John Mosey, in a recent interview. “We can’t be comfortable with status quo that was designed for yesterday.”

Changes in the coming months include additional functionality in Instanet Lite to make it easier to create quick start groups (forms templates) and improvements to the NorthstarMLS mobile app, including access to the latest Realist tax data.

42% of Survey Respondents Add Written Comments
The SQI Survey allowed recipients to submit written comments. Here are a few that relate to MLS system change.

Positive Comments:
• “I find NorthstarMLS very easy to use, even after the upgrades occur.”
• “Always impressed how the MLS continues to be ‘new and improved’.”
• “I use the NorthstarMLS service more often than the other MLS system(s) I subscribe to. …seems easier than the other systems. I recommend the Northstar system to everyone.”

Critical Comments:
• “There have been a lot of changes this year. Can be a bit of a challenge to keep up.”
• “Too many changes in format. Nothing stays the same. As in all other aspects of life.”
• “Very rapid changes frustrate me often! Would prefer changes be aimed, if can, towards fall/winter time and not in my Spring/Summer market.”

We will be breaking down survey results throughout the course of the next few weeks. Stay tuned.

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NorthstarMLS recently conducted its seventh annual Service Quality Index Survey. The survey garnered overall subscriber feedback. Recipients were selected on a completely random basis. The results we received this year, and in the past, are invaluable to us. They help us understand what we can do better to serve you and remain one of the most well respected MLS’s in the country. We will be breaking down survey results throughout the course of the next few weeks. Stay tuned.

This Infographic visually summarizes the 2012 NorthstarMLS SQI Survey Results. Click on the image below for a larger view.

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