While the Coworking industry continues to expand and evolve, its important to adapt the technology in your space accordingly. Let’s take a look at some of the most critical tech components for Coworking spaces as we move toward the new year.
Every Coworking space should absolutely have a CRM in place. It is truly one of the most integral components to a modern thriving workspace. Not only does it assist in lead tracking, but a CRM will improve your relationships with your current and prospective members.
A CRM will streamline lead entry, customer lifecycle tracking, vendor relationship management, and many other operational tasks. It drives efficiency and will enhance productivity, and directly leads to greater profitability.
The technology-driven corporate world we live in today demands a CRM. According to a study by Gartner, CRM will be the single largest revenue area of spending in enterprise software by the year 2021.
Not only is the CRM going to be a core tool for sales and marketing, but it will also benefit customer service. Since your members are reaching out via social media, phone, chat, email, and any other method they can find, it’s important to consolidate all their interactions in one place. The uses of a robust CRM are virtually limitless for all aspects of a successful Coworking space.
Whether you operate one space or multiple locations, automated billing is one of the most vital tech components to success.
Consider the time you’re spending monthly in balancing and reconciling your books. Consider the outsourced cost if you hire a bookeeper or accountant. With the market becoming more competitive, supply is increasing, and operators that are organized and can run more efficiently, can then afford for their fixed costs to be reduced. In other words, operators streamlining their business with automated billing (among other tech driven solutions) can offer the same product, higher margin, lower cost.
Manual entry, no matter how meticulous you are, can create leakage, aside from the basic time and financial incurred costs. Ask yourself, what percentage of your costs go to remedial, administrative, non-revenue tasks, instead of working on relationship building, top line revenue aspects. Everything that is a remedial task can be and should be done automatically. It will further allow your staff to focus on the key aspects to running a successful space.
And these problems are worse if you’re a multi space operator, of course.
There are software which combine an accounting package with merchant services. Yardi Kube has a full general ledger suite and accounting package. It will also feature merchant services, offer a vendor procurement solution, and e-broker component.
Everything your members do revolves around having reliable, top of the line internet connection. You might say, ‘of course I have Wi-Fi in my space’. And you’d be right. But is it to the elite level your members require? Is your space is large enough to require a Wi-Fi extender?
Consider a small extender gadget to ensure every corner of your space has the sufficient connection your members need. The best ones will even provide coverage across an entire floor of a building, if that is the case for your location.
If you need to invest in a new router, it is a very small price to pay short-term for long-term gain. To add to that, offer your members access to pocket Wi-Fi if necessary. And of course, never compromise the cyber security of your members for budgetary concerns. There is extremely important and confidential information all your members are working on. You need to optimize the security of your connection as well as the physical hardware tools themselves.
Bandwidth management plays a huge role in your connection because more bandwidth is being used all the time. Your members consume tons of data between streaming, downloading, programming, video conferencing, and more. Maximize the bandwidth going into your space. You could try an option of dedicated VLANs (Virtual Local Area Networks) for your top tier members, especially those with private offices.
Improve team/member connection
Some concepts of community in your Coworking space are not tech driven. Hosting after hours events, lunch time interaction, open floor plan concepts, are among some ways to facilitate the community aspect of Coworking. But the majority of the time, members are sitting behind a computer screen.
Ensure that your conference room has modern video chat technology, especially if you have virtual members. Encourage your members when they book out the meeting room to use the video chat instead of simply dialing in a conference. It gives a very sophisticated touch to your space and to their meeting.
The member portal will give your members desk reservations, meeting space bookings and an online marketplace all at their fingertips. You can promote special deals or vacancies to members, as well as give them visibility to view and pay invoices and billing statements.
Create monthly or bimonthly newsletters and/or update the community board to keep your members up to date. Continuously monitor your social media accounts, and if you don’t have presence on any of the main social media platforms, establish it now.
Headed into 2019 will take the Coworking industry into another leap as it has just about every year recently. Forecasters project an increase in members, members per space, size of space, and just about any other quantifiable category. To find out more ways in which the new Yardi Kube can drive the technology in your space, please click below.