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How to monetise your coworking space using a Building Automation Solution

Gaurav Bali
Gaurav Bali

12th September 2022


In order to significantly impact the industry, co-working spaces have been redesigning the idea of traditional working and adding numerous technologies. Artificial Intelligence (AI), Deep Learning (DL), Machine Learning (ML), and the Internet of Things (IoT) have all contributed to this upheaval. There is no denying that during the past few years, offices have transformed in remarkably interesting ways. While some companies will eventually revert to the old work culture, many offices are embracing new technology as they transition to the modern workplace. It may be simpler than ever before to embrace workplace technology’s efficiency by employing building automation systems. Therefore, if you already have a co-working space, want to start one, or are looking for ways to make money off those empty rooms, go ahead. In this blog, we will discuss how to monetise your co-working space using a Building Automation Solution

Origin of Co-working Spaces

The phrase “coworking” refers to a working arrangement in which members of several teams and businesses come together to collaborate in a single common area. In the 2000s, the very first coworking spaces started to appear. Most of the freelancers and online entrepreneurs seeking an alternative to working from coffee shops, business centers, and home offices that they attracted were independent contractors. Since then, coworking has spread throughout the world, and coworking spaces have changed to keep up with how we work. In 2019, there were reportedly 19,000 coworking spaces worldwide. Nowadays, everyone uses them, from distant workers to entire corporate teams.

Coworking Spaces – Explained!

Coworking spaces are, in the most basic sense, places where workers from various companies can congregate to conduct their jobs. Shared resources including tools, services, and facilities define coworking spaces. The expense of maintaining an office can be divided among members by sharing infrastructure, but coworking spaces provide more benefits than just cost savings.

Coworking spaces are social gathering places where people from various backgrounds can join together to exchange knowledge and consider novel concepts. Growing companies can access new talent pools and expand their reach without accepting the responsibility of a long-term contract by using coworking spaces. They offer newly distant workers a handy location to keep in touch with and collaborate with coworkers without needing to travel too far.

Advantages of Coworking Spaces

There are a variety of variables that have contributed to the continuous growth of coworking spaces in cities around the world. The 2008 financial crisis caused a rise in newly independent business owners and freelancers, many of whom required a space other than their personal living rooms for work and collaboration.

The COVID-19 pandemic threw a wrench in the system once more, speeding up the work-from-home trends as social distance constraints prevented people from going back to the office. Currently, the traditional office is being redefined as a collaborative hub, a creative environment, and a hybrid workplace as workers seek greater flexibility in how and where they do their job.

In addition to being a savior for individual employees, coworking spaces are a key component of any company’s effort to move towards a more flexible style of working. Let’s examine some of the primary benefits of coworking spaces.

  • Enhanced Flexibility: The majority of coworking spaces don’t demand that you sign a long-term contract. Instead, independent contractors and startups can benefit from shorter contracts and customizable pay-as-you-go arrangements, which can help reduce costs for new businesses.
  • Community Vibe: Coworking spaces have expanded to provide a much larger range of functions, but their core purpose has remained the same: to assist early entrepreneurs in escaping the monotony and solitude of working from home. Using a coworking space, you might meet a group of professionals who share your interests.
  • Frictionless Network: This is related to the coworking spaces’ emphasis on community that was previously highlighted. Sharing a physical area with people from other industries and your own opens you new options and helps you form enduring relationships with people you meet.
  • Enhanced Productivity: A guaranteed approach to increasing your personal productivity is to work with a group of motivated and focused individuals. Along with making it more difficult to procrastinate when others are present, going physically to a location where you can work can also help you establish a timetable.
  • Cost Effective: Greater cost-efficiency is one of a coworking space’s primary advantages. Businesses on a tight budget can save service fees and cut off many of the typical overheads associated with a long-term real estate lease by sharing resources like office space, reception activities, internet, and printers with employees from other enterprises.

How do Co-working Spaces benefit from Building Automation Solutions?

By utilizing IoT and incorporating other technology, a variety of building automation solutions are able to transform coworking spaces into smarter, more vibrant, and engaging workplaces. Technology helps managers run their businesses smoothly through a single platform, from synchronized calendars that let users view available workspaces on a dashboard to long-term solutions like controlling the office climate. IoT has been a big part of the Co-Workspace market and has started to go in this direction, much like the idea of Smart Home Automation.

Smart Biometric Controlled Entry and Exit

After a customer has been given a workstation or desk, the authentication process is the first item to take into account. With the use of several technologies, including RFID, barcodes, and beacons, the entry-exit process can be automated. Users adore Bluetooth beacons and a unique mobile phone app for keyless entry, which are the most popular automation solutions for biometric entries in shared workspaces. You won’t need to swipe, scan or tap your ID card to enter the new office; instead, you can just walk right in.

Utilization and Consumption of Energy

Because of the instant cost savings provided by IoT, your IoT investment may actually see a profit.

  • Day-to-Day Control of Lighting and Climate: The shared offices’ lighting is managed by motion sensors. IoT and sensors allow for the movement-based control of lighting in a place. When the curtains need to open or close, you can use IoT automation to operate them from a distance. In order to turn off the lighting in the shared workspaces when they are not used, we can use the motion sensors. A real-time alert system is also available in case any of the lights burn out.
  • A Smart Approach to HVAC Power Consumption Control: IoT technology can help HVAC systems function in conjunction with current weather conditions to provide the optimum working environments in offices. Regardless of how close it is to other areas, air conditioning and central heating systems can be used to keep a constant temperature in any workplace. Motion sensors are used to switch off the equipment when the room is empty. Additionally, it is possible to turn on the HVAC systems in advance before the clients arrive at the office.
  • Smart Power Distribution and Control Using Smart Meters: In the time of high load power usage, shared workplace management can receive real-time notifications, enabling them to look into and fix the issue. The distribution system might experience power outages, which can be detected using smart meters.

Intelligent Plants for Reliable Air Quality

Smart HVAC installation enhances the coworking space’s air quality while also increasing energy efficiency and reducing costs. The best possible air quality is also maintained by IoT-enabled smart plant technology. Sensors like light and humidity sensors in the plant can communicate wirelessly with a web-based program or a mobile app if plants run out of water, nutrients, or sunlight.

Smart Security Cameras with Intelligent Control

Constantly keep an eye on the important areas of your coworking space. In shared workspaces, wireless IP surveillance cameras can be installed to monitor unauthorized access. It is also possible to use motion detectors, which enable the camera to only start recording when it notices movement. Direct transmission of these recordings in the form of images or videos to the manager’s smartphone is possible.

Smart Cashless Payment System Powered by IoT

Users of coworking spaces may make use of the following amenities: seats, conference rooms, food and drink, printers, concierge services, or paid events. Many of these services will come under the “Use on the Go” category, while others will be classified as Book and Go. Due to RFID technology, smart cards will be capable of functioning as both a payment card and an access control card. Through a mobile application or a web-based platform, customers may add funds to these smart cards, which can be used to make transactions inside the coworking space. Users may receive monthly reports from the workspace management that include payment information for any services they might have used.

How to Effectively Monetize your Coworking Space?

The cost-efficient capabilities of coworking spaces are one of the main reasons why so many people select them. The traditional workplace demands significant upkeep and investment as the business grows. However, there will be a sizable decrease in prices and operational expenses by using a shared office. Below given are some of the features of coworking spaces that help businesses to monetize and generate income out of it.

No-touch Accessibility to Workspace

With an effective automation solution employed in coworking spaces, facility managers can use an access control system that eliminates the need for occupants to use keys, fobs, or swipe cards to log in. Occupants can enter your space with either of these services using their phone and Bluetooth, WiFi, or near-field communication (NFC). This makes it easy for the facility managers to administrate the logins/logouts and also eliminates the need for managing and safeguarding physical keys, thereby reducing maintenance costs. With no-touch access, companies may also grant non-members access during specific hours by utilizing a visitor management feature which allows members to invite visitors to their coworking space for meetings.

Preventive Maintenance

By implementing proactive and predictive maintenance, the BAS system executes service plans that base maintenance on the actual status of the equipment rather than a predetermined schedule, hence lowering future repair costs. By implementing this method, equipment is kept performing at a high level continuously rather than waiting for anything to break. Additionally, a predictive method can be used to order maintenance and repairs such that the most crucial systems—as determined by the building owner or operator—are fixed first, resulting in the best ROI.

Automated Compliance Policies

One of BAS’s unique qualities is that it allows coworking spaces to determine their own taxation policies independent of local legal counsel or lawyers. Additionally, BAS includes an integrated E-signature capability that enables you to sign contracts from any location, including while traveling! With this tool, you have three choices for signing contracts: typing your signature, drawing it with a mouse or drag-and-drop device, or uploading a picture of your signature. For businesses that use a hybrid workplace system, this functionality proves to be very helpful.

Automated Invoice and Payments

With the help of the BAS, even invoicing and bills may be automated. Your members will immediately get an automated email detailing the invoices once they’re generated. With the help of this system, you can keep track of the bills that have been paid and those that haven’t, as well as your rental income and occupancy reports. In a nutshell, the system provides you with all the resources you need to manage every aspect of your coworking space without the expense of hiring a separate team to handle things.

Continuous Space Monitoring

Every facility manager must have a building automation solution in hand that enables them to view who is in their space at any time and from any location. Since people tailgate or otherwise fail to swipe in and out, relying solely on door access swipes is insufficient. As your wifi automatically syncs with member devices, the BAS network check-in system gives you the most recent information on who is on your network and in your area, which allows you to verify whether any outsider is inside your space. The ability to build plans based on hourly or daily usage and automate the process from usage tracking to payment gives you another method to generate income. This also checks people against their membership plans.

High ROI

By high ROI or investment return, it is meant that if you stick with the traditional pen and paper method, you lose gains like:

1. Savings on expenses: By automating processes at your coworking space, you can provide services for a lower price because you won’t need to recruit as many employees and can save money on their salaries. You can boost your revenues and reinvest them in new facilities, amenities, machinery, or anything else by cutting expenditures.

2. Decreased lead time: Automation makes it easier for you to serve consumers more quickly, which boosts your cash flow.

3. Reduced error rate: Your coworking space-related data will be error-free due to the preciseness of the automation solutions. Your chances of satisfying clients are substantially higher when you have precise, current data. Keep in mind that your labor costs are lower even if you haven’t separately paid for this precision.

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After reading this blog’s comprehensive explanation of coworking spaces and how they are benefited from building automation solutions, we can now decide whether these spaces are profitable for businesses. Owners and operators of coworking spaces who want to see a rise in revenue must be prepared to make the necessary investments to make the space the best possible in terms of facilities, features, and overall work atmosphere. As the future of work embraces flexibility, demand for such spaces is anticipated to grow. Distinctiveness and member experience are two of the most crucial characteristics that will influence members' decisions to choose one place over another. Thus, make sure to manage and update your coworking spaces with contemporary technologies.

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