Productivity

How to Automate Desk Booking at a Coworking Space

Helga Moreno

The way members utilize the amenities available at your coworking space directly impacts the degree of their satisfaction with the service and your income, of course. Desk booking is one of the everyday tasks a community manager must handle without any hitches. However, wherever is a manual operation, there is inefficiency and space for improvement.

The goal of this article is to give you some guides on making desk bookings at your workspace as sound as bell both for members and managers. From the title, you already know that we are going to talk about automation, and the best automation is self-service. So, the idea is to give your members a self-service platform for booking desks that won't require any management or administration. 

Not sure if you need a desk booking system at your coworking center? Skim through this publication, Why Do You Need Desk Booking Software at Your Flexible Workspace, it will help to decide. 

Desk Booking System for Coworking Space

There is plenty of desk booking software on the Internet but we are not going to discuss these separate solutions. We want to make things stupid simple for members and managers, not the opposite, so one more app is not an option.

If you want to reach the utmost productivity, you need a single platform for everything — desk booking, meeting room booking, services, benefits, communication, payments, etc. Coworking space management software will cover all those needs for you. However, you need to choose it wisely and make sure that all solutions are in place.

andcards desk booking system left to right: Desk booking button and widget showing upcoming desk booking. List of desks available for booking on a selected date.

For instance, andcards customers get a fully-functional desk booking system together with the main software. Let's see how it works.

How Does Desk Booking System Work

First and foremost, the andcards desk booking system enables customers to reserve desks for a day without any help from the manager's side. The system is built into mobile apps, so all they need is their smartphone. The whole process includes a few simple steps:

  1. A customer taps the "Desks" button on the Homepage of andcards app.
  2. Picks a date and available desk from the list on the opened "Desks" page.
  3. Reviews reservation details (date, seat), and confirms the booking by paying for it with one of the available methods (credits, Google Pay, Apple Pay, credit or debit card, etc.)

andcards desk booking system left to right: Desk booking interface with "company credits" selected as a payment method. Details of a desk booking visible to administrators and members.

Today's desk reservations will be displayed on the neat widget on the home page of andcards coworking space app together with room reservations. Customers will also get push notifications reminding about the upcoming bookings.

This was a demonstration of desk booking automation by means of enabling self-service. Your members and drop-in clients can reserve workstations at your flexible workspace any time, from any place without asking the administrator for help.

Sounds great, but let's figure out what exactly a desk booking solution from andcards automates for members and managers. 

What It Does for Coworkers

  • Simplifies the desk booking process. Coworkers can book desks for a day from any place using their smartphones. The data about desks availability is updated in real time, so there is no need to ask or check anything. Payments are made instantly inside the app, so coworkers can go straight to their desk and get to work right upon arrival to the workspace if they wish.
  • Reminds about the upcoming bookings. There is no chance for a coworker to forget about their desk booking. The system will remind about the upcoming reservation with a push notification. 
  • Shows today's bookings. All today's bookings are displayed on the homepage of the andcards app with the help of a neat widget. If a customer wants to overview the entire booking history, they can do it from the Membership tab. 
  • Makes life easier. It's always great to know that a comfortable workstation is waiting for you exactly when you need it even if you don't have a long-term commitment with a flexible workspace. 

What It Does for Managers

andcards desk booking system left to right: Overview of all desks at a coworking space. List view of all bookings on a given date.

  • Frees from manual work. Since members book desks themselves, you don't need to answer the calls or messages, check desks availability, and run records. The process is super simple and 100% automated. 

  • Gives a bird's eye view of all bookings. You always know who is sitting where in your coworking space, which desks are occupied and which are free and can be sold. You can check bookings (payments) history sorted out by member and by company from the Community page. 

  • Eliminates booking conflicts. Information about desks availability is refreshed in real time. Customers see only free desks, so there is no chance to book the same seat. 

  • Collects payments. To confirm the booking, the customer needs to pay for it first. So, you don't need to worry about this aspect as well. Just connect payment options you use at your workspace with andcards platform and coworkers will be able to pay with credits, Google/Apple Pay, debit/credit card, Charge Card, etc.

  • Helps to increase revenue. If you allow the public sign-up for your coworking app, not only members get the possibility to book your desks. Actually, any freelancer can use this service and pay with a card. Besides, a desk booking system allows you to tailor an irresistible offer for corporate clients, which is especially winning during lockdowns, quarantine restrictions, and decreased income. You can add corporate employees to Community on andcards and enable them book desks whenever they need and pay with Charge Card (payment method when employees use the services and manager pays for everything at the end of the month.) No long-term commitments and paying only for the required services are great strategies to attract corporate clients and raise your income.

  • Provides statistical data. You can get accurate numbers on desks occupancy by days, payments made, customers served, and more via visual Google Data Studio reports. This will exclude guesswork, and make your strategic decisions data-driven. 

  • Makes customers happier. Providing a high-tech self-service platform to the customers will single out your brand. You will be associated with a customer-first approach, which is a clear benefit and a good reason to choose you.

Desk Booking Automation Steps

Now, when you know so much about how desk booking automation works and what it gives, it's time to learn what it takes to automate bookings at a coworking space. I will recap all steps for you and you will be surprised how easy it is.

  • Check your desks. You need to know your assets to offer them to the customers. If you have a large open space with lots of desks, implement a desk booking system urgently as you are missing monetization opportunities. 
  • Get andcards app. For this, schedule a demo call with us where we will answer all your questions and update you on the next steps and onboarding details. 
  • Make up a list of available desks on andcards with photos and descriptions.
  • Connect your coworking space app with payment and access control software as well as any other solutions you are planning to use (i.e: Google Data Studio.) andcards already has pre-built integrations for that. As soon as the integrations are activated, you are ready to accept payments online and allow customers to unlock your door with a smartphone. 
  • Make members download andcards app. They can do it from Apple App Store or Google Play Store. Besides, you can use the tips described in this article Coworking App: How to Improve Member Activation & Engagement to improve the activation and engagement rate of your coworking app. 
  • Allow public sign up. This is necessary to sell your desks outside your community of signed up members. 
  • Enjoy automated desk booking and increased revenue. No need to arrange bookings, check payments, or run records manually. Free yourself from administrative staff and focus on business growth strategies, customer retention, and all other big objectives. 

Conclusion

This was a quick guide on desk booking automation. Now you know what it takes and what it gives your coworking space. Let me know in the comments if it was useful for you. I will also be happy to answer all the additional questions you might have. 

Don't forget to tell your friends on socials about desk booking automation. I believe there's much to be discussed.

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About andcards

andcards is the first coworking software focused on member experience. andcards easy-to-use mobile apps help thousands of tenants get the most out of their workspace.