Top 5 Essential Tools for co-working spaces

Rupert - Validate founder

In our view a co-working space offers a new lifestyle. A space to enjoy and make Monday mornings something to look forward to. For those of you have migrated from more corporate jobs, a co-working space should be a complete transformation. It’s a space where people can work alongside friends and colleagues. It’s a space designed to make working feel less like working, with social events, talks, areas to relax and unwind, a place to work and enjoy a nice view. All these ingredients help with productivity, the happier you are, the more productive you are.

But, for co-working spaces to manage and forecast bookings, this can be tough. Luckily there are plenty of tools out there.

1. Cobot

Pricing from €49 – €789 per month.

“Cobot is the leading management software for co-working spaces, office hubs, and flexible workspaces around the world.” Compared to some of the other tools out there, Cobot is turbo charged with features and a suite of app integrations.

However, due to this, it’s also a little pricier ranging between €49 – €789. I’d say that it’s better suited to larger co-working spaces, who will make use of all their tools. Especially during tough times like Covid, Coworking spaces often need all the extra cash they can get. With that said, member retention is super important, so if your members find all these additional tools useful then it is worth the extra cost.

The company was founded by engineers to solve their own internal needs back in 2010 and since it’s grown and become one of the most well known tools for co-working spaces. Here’s a video discussing the app with one of the Cobot founders Thilo Utke.

2. Nexudus

Pricing from $89 – $500

Free upto 5 members. You can cancel membership anytime.

“The enterprise platform to manage and scale co-working workspaces”. This is what they say on their site and they do just that. They offer co-working spaces a platform to manage most of the key aspects of a co-working space, from booking meeting rooms to community feed and also prospect pipelines and email monitoring to help acquire new members.

Now in honesty, having used the App, I feel it’s a little rough around the edges. The team and community features need refining so that it’s easier to use. The navigation is also a little confusing as you can easily miss important information and lose track of your hourly membership. With that said, co-working spaces can customise this App how they like and set their own processes to monitor and manage members.

In comparison to Cobot, Nexudus doesn’t offer many integrated tools, like Slack, whereas Cobot and many others do. That’s not to say it won’t be in future versions.

It is also quite good value for money. I would pitch Nexudus as a platform for those co-working space that are just starting out and beginning their new life. It’s a 3rd party tool that you can quite easily sync with your website and members.

3. Officernd

Pricing from £129 – £221 per month.

Above 200 members you need to contact them for a quote.

“Automate administrative processes and deliver amazing digital experience to your customers”. Officernd has a really nice dashboard, which is easy to navigate and shows your data in a clear way, like your space growth over time and also your floor plans. So you can update you spaces as they evolve an look at ways to make each floor more efficient or just to pimp them up with some fake grass and idea sheds.

Here’s a video tutorial of how Officernd works, which I think is really useful. I’m actually really surprised at the lack of video walkthroughs for many of these platforms.

I think that Officernd is a serious tool with a big team behind them, so your bound to get a reliable product and hopefully the support to match. They do also allow integration of 3rd party Apps, which gives them flexibility. They’re also very good from a value perspective.

The only real negative (correct me if I’m wrong) but they don’t have a sales pipeline to help you manage prospective leads. Whilst hey have analytics and insights on the flow of members, they seem to stay away from helping you attract and monitor new leads.

In their own words – “Making flexible working the way of working has always been our main goal. We started OfficeRnD because we believe that workspaces could be something more – platforms that help you focus on your work, give you access to knowledge you didn’t have before and connect you to like-minded professionals.”

4. Yardi Kube

Pricing: NA

“The Most Powerful Co-working Software On The Market” (apparently). Now I do actually like Yardi Kube a lot. I think they have a playful, but clear UI, and lots of tools for co-working spaces to make use of, however nothing hugely out of the ordinary in terms of features. I don’t like that you can’t see their price packages on their website. You have to get in touch for these.

One key point to be made aware of is that they do not have 3d party app integrations. They pride themselves on being a one-stop-shop. This can have its pros and cons. Enabling members to discuss topics and post event information inside one tool is handy if you want to seem a little more professional and ditch the random Facebook groups to verticalise. However, this approach might alienate some members who like using tools like Slack and Facebook. (At least this is what I know at the time of this post).

“In November 2017, Yardi acquired WUN Systems to expand their property management solutions into the co-working and shared space industries. Prior to the acquisition, WUN had served the shared workspace industry for more than eight years as the provider of the #1 co-working software, Kube.” So until the acquisition Yardi offered support to real estate owners. Today their product doesn’t just operate within the co-working industry, they cater to real estate owners, conference centres, business centres and more… So I think Yardi is a good all-rounder. Perhaps catering to a multitude of industries will lead to more innovation, or perhaps, being less niche as other products, they could fall behind – only time will tell!

As I’m writing these reviews I want to make they are accurate as possible. This is an opinion based our own research. As always please get in touch if you think anything is either un-true in your experience or if you have reviews of your own, or even if you have an update on product features. We will also keep adding to this post to review more co-working tools, so please be patient! 🙂

5. Coworkify

Pricing from $29 – $200 per month.

That will be for unlimited members.

“Coworkify enables co-working spaces and flexible workspaces to efficiently manage their operations and members.” In terms of pricing, this is also more affordable, especially in comparison to Cobot. As a platform Coworkify is a little more simple in it’s offering. They help spaces manage bookings, invoicing, sales and marketing (in the form of a landing page with photos and plans to attract prospective members) and memberships.

I would say that Coworkify is in a similar league to Nexudus, but without the sales and marketing support. So if you already use 3rd party software for your sales pipeline the they both offer similar features. I think your decision will then come down to how intuitive the UI and UX is for you and your co-working team.

Slack

Pricing begins from FREE! You can of course contact Slack for custom plans.

Co-working spaces can opt for the free version and just pay for each member of admin. There are some limitations, but you an do A LOT for free.

If you haven’t got the infrastructure setup yet, then start small.

Most of us are familiar with Slack and if you work in a startup then it’s likely one of your main channels of communication asides from emails. Think of Slack as a glorified MSN Messenger. It’s perfect for instant communication with your team and co-working space. With the rise of Tik Tok and the steadily increasing Instagram following, Facebook is becoming sidelined.

With that said, Facebook can still be a great place to host a community. It’s easy to keep track of posts and especially good for announcing events. However, it’s not designed for businesses, but rather for social groups. So all of Facebooks tools are geared towards social shares. Going forwards, Slack seems to offer a suite of more tailored business tools and Apps, in addition to instant dialog between members and staff, which is why it’s at the top of the list. It’s one of the simplest ways to manage your community.

Some useful links for you to check out:

This site is a really comprehensive list of all the tools available to co-working spaces: https://www.coworkingresources.org/blog/apps-tools-and-technology-for-coworking-spaces

They also have another blog post for those looking to start their own space and who might not have experience in the industry. This blog offers some useful insights: https://www.coworkingresources.org/blog/how-to-create-a-coworking-space-thats-ready-to-scale

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