How to Choose the Right Management Software
With the number of complex services they provide, from billing to tracking members, the coworking software you choose to help run your space could make or break the business. However, these comprehensive platforms often offer so many services, integrations, and add-on features that it can get overwhelming when trying to determine the most important factors. We’ve eliminated some of the guesswork by narrowing down the most important functionalities a software should have for a coworking space, along with some general advice to help you decide with confidence.
Major criteria to consider:
- Access Control
- Flexibility and Efficiency of Use
- Help and Documentation
- Customization (White label & integrations)
- Lead Generation and Data Analysis
- Pricing model and scalability
Your Own Custom Solution
If choosing an all-inclusive management software seems like an impossible task, there is an alternative — building your own custom solution. Many spaces have built their own coworking management system (or operating system), with the integrations and add-ons that cater to their specific space the most, in lieu of generic enterprise software. However, before designing a customized platform, you should make sure you have specific reasons why the above providers don’t work and that you have enough resources to support and maintain your app throughout its lifecycle.
Kisi's integration with the major coworking apps
Are you using Kisi to control access to your space? If so, you should know that Kisi’s cloud dashboard offers integrations with Cobot, Nexudus, Office RND, Optix, KUBE by WUN, Croissant and many other apps! Take a look at the different integrations here and see how you could benefit from them.
The categories we used to rate our list of coworking management software is loosely based on the 10 Usability Heuristics for User Interface Design created by the Nielsen Norman Group, a leading authority in research-based user experience. Since many of the management platforms we’ve reviewed in the past bear strong similarities to traditional enterprise software companies, with an emphasis on integrations and full stack solutions, we found it appropriate to judge them by the most common UX/UI standards available along with the ability to control physical access to a coworking space.
Each grading category was broken down into specific questions concerning the features and abilities of the individual platform:
- Can customers control security access from the platform?
- Can customers revoke a member's access to the space when they no longer pay for their membership?
- Can customers issue smartphone keys to new members based on membership level?
- Can customers monitor all the doors in their space from anywhere in the world through the management platform?
- Can customers provide 24/7 access to their space through the security features of the software?
Flexibility and Efficiency of Use
- Can the customer automate billing and payments for members (automatic invoicing)?
- Is there a dashboard on the platform where the customer can track payments?
- Can the customer add extra, non-regular services (eg. catered meal, package handling, event hosting, etc)?
- Can the customer manage multiple locations through the platform?
- Is the software available in multiple languages (for both owners and members)?
- Can customers easily sign up members or cancel contracts from the platform?
- Can the members book spaces (conference rooms, event spaces, etc...) through the platform?
- Can customers edit membership contracts at any time?
Help and Documentation
- Does the company offer help with system set up? (Is there an onboarding process?)
- Does it offer online support?
- Can customers chat, either with a bot or a live representative?
- Can the customer easily export data in a csv or Excel sheet?
- Can the software be integrated with other services?
- Does the software integrate with other apps, and if so, how many integrations does the software have?
- Can the customer customize the management platform with their own brand/company colors?
- Can the customer create customized membership plans? (i.e. daily/weekly/monthly/yearly memberships
- Can the members create their own profiles on the platform?
- Does the platform offer a whitelabel customization?
- Cost per member?
- Cost per location?
- Cost per month?
- Does the platform offer custom set-up for the payment system?
Lead Generation and Data
- Does the software help identify leads (potential customers)?
- Can the customer create and distribute marketing or lead generating emails from the platform?
- Does the software provide data analysis or business analytics?
- Can the customer communicate with their coworking members through the software (email notifications, in-app messages, or chat?)
- Does the customer receive notifications when members violate the terms of their contract?
- Can the customer send mass emails of newsletters to their members through the software?
- Can the coworking members communicate or network with others through the software? (In other words, is the software customer-facing as well as internal?)
- Does the software have a mobile interface for the customer? (Can it be managed from a phone?)
- Does the software have a member-facing mobile app?
We assigned points for every feature offered among the above criteria and then ranked each company accordingly. We also took into consideration previous interviews and recent updates given to us by the companies themselves.