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How to Automate your Coworking Space

Automation is everywhere. It’s affecting the CRE industry and could even take your job thanks to the range of tools and services now hitting the marketplace. If you automate your coworking space, you could realize a multitude of benefits.

If used correctly, it could carry out those repetitive tasks you face every day. These include:

  • Taking payments: including day passes, virtual mail memberships and coworking bundles.
  • Making reservations: both for your meeting rooms and event spaces.
  • Managing new members: including new member setup and entering member details into your billing, access and printer systems.
  • Managing existing members: including member profile updates, inputting billing information and preferences, adding members to email lists and setting up auto-payments. 
  • Controlling your building: including its temperatures settings, lighting controls and building access.

That’s a lot of things you could cross off your to-do list. If you decide to automate your coworking space, this is a complex undertaking and one that you must get right. The best automation solutions should enhance the user experience for your members, not hinder it.

With all that in mind, here are a few tips and pointers to help you automate your coworking space:

Identify your weak spots

Before you start working out the best automation solution for your coworking space, you need to evaluate the jobs you could hand over to a machine.

To achieve this, you could track your work activities for a week or so. This will reveal the major time-sinks in your day. For example, if you find yourself spending hours adding new members to your mailing list or letting members in and out of your building, could you find a better, automated solution?

Also, ask your members to identify any cumbersome activities that adversely affect how they use your space.

Consider a complete solution

Once you have identified those repetitive and time-consuming tasks, you need to find a software solution. There are many different options available. Some are bespoke solutions that focus on one area of automation. Others offer a complete package.

For example, Yardi Kube is an all-in-one automation package specifically tailored to the coworking industry. It handles your accounting, billing, payment processing, prospect and member portals, wifi and data management and voice solutions, all from one interface. Plus, it includes real-time reporting and lead generation features. So, you have the insights and tools at your fingertips to further optimize your space too.

Such comprehensive packages are a great idea if you want to automate your coworking space in one go, with the minimum disruption.

Train your members

Once you have found an automation solution, don’t forget to include your members in the roll-out process. They will be using your new system and need to understand not only how to use the system but also why you’re introducing it. So, remember to highlight the benefits to your members.

For example, no one appreciates a broken printer. However, an automated printer could alert you if there’s an issue, or even automatically alert a service engineer. Most even order their own ink and paper when supplies are low too.

Don’t forget your business

Automation should boost the user experience at your coworking space. But it could also boost your membership figures by automating many of your sales and marketing activities.

Here are some solutions you may want to consider:

  • Onboarding new members: with automation tools, you can make your onboarding system as simple as it can get. Not only can this optimize the experience for new members, but it can also help you keep your databases up-to-date.
  • Identifying new leads: do you have dozens of people on your subscriber email list? Do you know which ones are high-value leads? Or how to segment that list? Automation can help you achieve this, so you can tailor your marketing strategies to the right people.
  • Delivering customized content: if you can segment your subscriber lists, then you can deliver customized content to different groups. For example, let’s say a user is interested in an upcoming event. Your automation tool has worked this out because they clicked a link about it on a previous email campaign. You can then use automation to fire out an automatic email reminding them about the event.
  • Following up with warm leads: automation tools can help you create a follow-up strategy, targeting those individuals who are interested in your space. Again, you could segment users based on certain criteria and personalize your content.
  • Engaging with existing members: to retain your current members, you can also segment and personalize your content so it’s tailored to their interests. What’s more, you can reach out with exclusive content and monitor their response rate using automation.

Automate your coworking space with a human touch

Automation can bring many benefits to your coworking space. However, remember to take a human-centric approach.

Bear in mind that your automation solution will have a direct impact on your members. So, remember to include them in your decision-making process. 

For example, you may think replacing your receptionist with an automated access solution is a great idea. But how would your members feel if they entered your space via a screen? Some may love the idea, others may loathe it. 

Make sure you find the right balance and don’t put off your members with an automated ‘solution’ they don’t want (or need).

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