Coworks was awarded Best Software for New Coworking Spaces by Coworking Insights. Here, we look at what goes into that and what it means for your new...
How to select the best coworking space management software
You want to give your members the best experience in your coworking space. For that, you need the right software.
Selecting the best management software for your coworking space can feel like a Sisyphean task, but it doesn’t have to be.
Here are the three steps you need to take to evaluate and select the best coworking space management software for your team:
1. Assess your current needs, workflows, and bottlenecks
2. Conduct demo calls on your terms
3. Grade vendors according to these 10 key criteria
1. Assess the needs of your members, coworkers, and potential members
When choosing the best coworking space management software you need to have a clear understanding of what your current state and what your desired state looks like. Define what your current processes look like, flesh out the problems, list your requirements, and then choose a solution that fills in the gaps.
Take inventory of your current workflows
The first question you should ask yourself is, how do users currently book meeting rooms and desks? Many coworking spaces have manual processes with no automation, which takes up an extraordinary amount of your community manager team’s time. Other spaces get stuck using software that may not meet their current needs, like being out of budget, having little to no customization, or lacking adequate IT support.
The next workflow to investigate: How do members grant day pass access to their guests? A day pass is a one-time purchase that allows non-members to utilize your space for a flat rate. Offering a day pass to access your coworking space gives people an avenue to trial your services and brand. Day pass functionality adds an additional line of revenue and a fantastic method for lead generation. If this process is slow or clunky, you’re likely missing out on valuable leads.
Take inventory of your current tech stack
Check in on your technological capabilities and requirements. You don’t want to get far into the buying process with a space management software vendor, only to discover they are missing a key feature you depend on.
How many tools do you use to manage sales and revenue? Will you need direct integrations? Integrating a new software and system can be detrimental to your operations and your team’s morale if it’s done poorly. The best coworking space management software for you will be one that can fit in seamlessly and complement your current systems.
Do you need real-time data for space utilization? Providing up-to-date space usage information can make or break the experience your members have in your space.
Do your members prefer using a mobile app? Ease of access is a leading factor in customer satisfaction and having a mobile-friendly approach is becoming an industry standard.
Where are you duct-taping together software that you’d rather have in one place? Instead of juggling various solutions that weren’t built to work together, consider consolidating to one solution that can meet all your requirements.
Take inventory of where your community managers lose valuable time
One keystone in process improvement is decreasing the amount of time wasted on essential tasks. Your community managers are the cornerstone of your operations and member experience, so freeing them up from menial tasks helps them focus on truly value-adding tasks.
How long does it take to onboard a new member? There are many steps in onboarding a new member, such as signing an agreement, giving access to software and services, and conducting a tour of your space or tutorial of your software. Does any of this process happen on paper or require manual/duplicate data entry? Time to automate that.
How long does it take to check someone in? Long wait times can be frustrating for both parties, and may make folks late for important work tasks! Making check-in smoother has a significant impact on elevating your space.
Is your community manager tied to the front desk? The best coworking space management software allows your manager to be mobile and agile, providing a better experience to members and visitors. If everything hinges on them sitting behind a certain monitor, you may be missing out on opportunities to make your space more efficient and effective.
What are the top tech or space issues members bring up? Do you have a procedure for your members to provide feedback and to implement that feedback? Again, does it involve any manual data entry or redundancies? Are members constantly asking for resources like the WiFi password?
2. Make the most out of demo calls with coworking space management software vendors
Interview the vendors of your space management software the same way you would interview a new employee: With a process, keeping your pain points in mind, taking notes, staying objective, and focused on the goal — improving your member and employee experience.
What to look for in coworking space management software providers
They’ve worked with spaces like yours before and have case studies and metrics they can share proving they understand your unique needs. The best coworking space management software for your business will be one that has saved time and money for your peers.
Experience, reviews, and results are also vital in verifying credibility. Don’t risk your success based on guesswork. Work with a vendor that has positive word-of-mouth and proven that they have met KPIs for other spaces.
Their pricing structure works for your team size and the number of locations or members you’ll have on the platform. Understand what your organization will be paying for and how it affects its profit margins. In the U.S., companies waste an average of $247 per desktop on rarely used or unused software.
If your team agrees with the details, you can make confident and informed decisions on a software solution for your coworking space.
What to ask in your next demo call
Below are some simple questions that will help you see the value in a prospective coworking space management software on a demo call. Ask:
What is their onboarding process? Time is valuable, and adoption can take quite a lot of time. Know what you and your team can expect once the adoption phase begins. Will you have a dedicated onboarding representative? Will you have an ongoing account manager contact?
Is there a fee for adding more members or locations? Know what you will be paying for and how much more you will need to pay in the future as you grow.
Can members reserve/book equipment as well as spaces? Some members only need a desk, but others may need a printer. Having this capability in your software will add to your coworking space’s value and save your community managers’ time.
What kind of metrics will the management software give you? The best coworking space management software can provide the data you need to analyze and adjust your systems.
Will they be able to integrate with the tools you use every day? The last thing you want is a software solution that renders your other tools redundant. Choose a coworking space management software that has the customization to integrate with your current workflows and systems.
3. Grade your coworking space management software options
After you take a demo call, develop and share a grading rubric with your team to rank the software platform from 1 to 10 in these 10 crucial categories. We built one for you here. Gather grades from your team for the top 2-5 platforms you evaluate to have a more productive conversation around selecting the right vendor for you.
Here are our recommended top 10 categories for evaluating:
1. Previous Customers in Your Industry and Space Size
2. Meeting Room and Space Booking Features
3. Member Resources and Comms
4. New Member Lead Management
6. Security and Access Control
7. Customization Capabilities
8. Mobile UX
9. Reporting Capabilities
Discover why Coworks coworking management software offers a best-in-class solution
We’re confident that once you assess other solutions, you’ll find that the Coworks coworking management solution best serves all your needs. Schedule a demo today and see how it measures up!