A Look at 2020: The Anatomy of a Flex-Space Operation

By Amanda Fanoun
14.01.20 ·

We are excited to see all the media coverage and new market players, corporate companies and landlords moving into the flex space market. Our technology perspective allows us a unique lens on market dynamics, and it feels like flex is really going mainstream and fast becoming a demand default in the market. Join us as we look back on the past year and cast an eye out to the new decade. As we look at the market, we see specific areas and hot topics in a flex-space operation that will help you win in a competitive market.

All Eyes on Security

Tech security will be a top priority as corporate uptake continues to rise and businesses of all sizes use flex as a viable long-term real estate strategy. In fact, a recent report by Cushman and Wakefield highlights digital security as one of the most significant concerns of corporate occupiers in multi-tenant shared spaces. The ability to meet the privacy requirements of enterprise-level tenants and to protect critical data and services will be a key to survival in the flex-space market.

Mature players will start looking at security from beyond the technology view. A security breach can be a direct hit to your bottom line and reputation. A 2019 study by IBM estimated that a data breach could cost up to $3.92 million after calculating costs related to notifications, investigations, damage control, repairs, regulatory fines, and lawsuits. These costs increased 12% over the last five years – an indication that they are prone to continue rising as attacks become more prevalent. Given what’s at stake, mitigating risks and vulnerabilities – especially when it comes to premium service offerings for enterprise tenants – will be front and center for operators.

Service in the Spotlight

Two of the main reasons that occupiers are taking up flexible workspace are to agility and flexibility. With nothing but options in today’s growing market, service propositions and performance will be under the microscope in 2020. It’s not just what you’re offering, but it’s how services can enrich occupiers’ businesses. Are services scalable, easily accessible, and efficiently delivered?

Member experience relies heavily on service performance. Are your members always connected and empowered to be self-sufficient in the workspace? Forget the ping pong tables and kombucha on tap. 2020 is the year of mature, premium service offerings that can meet the varying requirements of today’s occupiers and enhance their office experience and workforce productivity.

How are you ramping up your services? Discover more.

Fast-track to Profitability

In the wake of 2019’s media focus on the sector, profitability will continue to be a critical success factor – especially for those landlords throwing their hat into the ring. With flex-space becoming a longer-term real estate solution, how profitable you are will be a valid criterion for occupiers when deciding where to rent space. Demonstrating strong financials and business sustainability requires having performance visibility across all flexible assets and operations.

To grow profitably, it’s essential to align your operation to your tenants and their needs. Ambitious operators are leveraging smart technology that identifies space usage and trends so they can tailor their proposition according to changing occupier needs. Getting control and visibility over how members interact with your space provides the insight you need to widen service portfolios in a way that increases revenue and boosts profitability.

A Greater Focus on Operational Efficiencies

2020 will demand more attention to operational processes in order to support service delivery and profitability. For flex-space, it’s about making business performance easy, smooth, adaptable, and fast for your tenants and members. This means eliminating obstacles, disruptions, and downtime so your tenants can stay productive.

Simplifying operational processes enables you to implement business strategies and growth initiatives across your organization. Do you want to improve staff performance and productivity? How about enhancing member experience? Integrated systems and task orchestration make operations management easier and better position your organization to respond to dynamic and quickly evolving occupier needs.

Capitalizing on Growth Drivers

In the last year we’ve seen ambitious operators grow rapidly and successfully. We’re proud to cite Industrious, Serendipity Labs, Carr Workplaces, Brain Embassy, and Areaworks among those that have scaled their portfolios. These and other providers are taking advantage of smart technology to liberate staff from mundane tasks and empower their tenants with compelling service offerings. These players also share strong brand identities and workspace propositions that drive value to their occupiers and keep high occupancy rates.

To grow sustainably means minimizing business risks and supporting smarter and faster business decisions. In 2020, we’ll see a greater emphasis on efficient business processes that reduce costs without compromising service quality or tenant experiences. To get there, we can expect more investment in infrastructure that accelerates growth while driving revenues and meeting occupier expectations.

Want to learn more about how you shape up the anatomy of your flex-space operation? Click here.