Business is good for Workspace as a Service (WaaS) providers. Mobile disruption and changing work and workplace dynamics are critical enablers spurring the growth. Whether you’re an office business center, a coworking space, a meeting venue, or offer a hybrid model, the opportunities are vast.
Work and Workplace Changes
Solopreneurs and small businesses are constantly on the move, and mobile is now the name of the game. They spend fewer and fewer hours in permanent physical office space, and many of them are opting to give it up altogether. This certainly makes sense. Ten percent of a small businesses revenue goes to paying for their office space.
At the same time, companies are abandoning the traditional concept of work and workspace as a 9 AM to 5 PM commitment in favor of a virtual, more mobile environment. More than one-quarter of the global workforce works away from their company offices two days a week, or more, and this is expected to grow 40 percent over the next five years. In addition to changing how offices are designed and operated and how much time workers spend sitting at their desks and working from a permanent, traditional office environment, this also translates into growing numbers of solopreneurs and small businesses that forego permanent office space and opt for business center or coworking space that is configured to facilitate collaborative work.
There are a number of reasons for this turn towards workspace on demand:
- More flexible workplace, 73%
- Lower employee-related expense costs, 53%
- Reduction in the cost of real estate, 48%
- Better able to attract top talent, 46%
- Better able to retain top talent, 43%
- Better business continuity, 37%
- Reductions in attribution costs, 36%
Transformation in Workspace as a Service (WaaS) Offerings
Coinciding with this transformation in how, when, and where work takes place is an evolution in services offered by Workspace providers. These fall into three buckets:
- Virtual offices
- Work and meeting spaces
- Communication services
Each of these offerings provide new and exciting revenue opportunities—from both existing and new clients. Profit margins are certainly up. According to the Global Workspace Association’s 2015 Financial Study, revenues for virtual offices and meeting spaces now comprise almost 20 percent of Workspace industry revenue and deliver an average profit margin of 11 percent. Overall revenue is up 2.3 percent, with total clients per office space increasing 6.3 percent.
So what should workspace providers do to ensure they continue to grow their business and capture these new revenue opportunities? A critical starting point is knowing your prospects and customers—everything from demographics, to industry segments, to work and workplace preferences, to purchase patterns, to communications preferences. At Davinci Virtual Office Solutions, we’ve created prospect and customer personas for each of our three service offerings—Davinci Virtual Offices, Davinci Meeting Rooms, and Davinci Communications—that are used by our sales and marketing teams to hone their outreach and marketing approach.
Looking to the Future
As workspace providers look to the future, there are several ways they can pivot their business models to achieve better profitability while also expanding revenues. Specifically, there is still room to grow utilization rates without expanding capacity. One is to fill underutilized meeting and workspace capacity, increasing revenue and expanding profit margins. Yet, it goes beyond existing offerings. Workspace providers can easily and quickly add virtual office and meeting space offerings when they join the Davinci Preferred Partner Network.
But there are other options as well. With many business clients of workspace providers struggling to manage their communications properly, this presents an excellent opportunity to tap a new revenue channel. The challenge here is the fact that most office business centers and coworking spaces aren’t staffed with enough nor the right type of professionals as well as have the right technologies to handle the unified communication services internally. Further, many of those that do offer communications services find they are unprofitable and a distraction to their business.
The Davinci Preferred Partner Network Difference
To capitalize on these market opportunities, Workspace providers have been turning to the Davinci Preferred Partner Network for help over the past decade. Over 1,200 Workspace providers are part of the Davinci Preferred Partner Network today and have seen tangible returns on the partnership, including higher revenues, more clients, and better profit margins. One average, we sign up 1000-plus virtual office clients and process several thousand meeting space reservations per month in the U.S. alone. This accounted for more than $8 million in payout revenue to our network partners last year, a number we expect to exceed $10 million this year.
- Virtual Office Solutions. Providers simply need to sign up as a Davinci Preferred Network Partner. We take care of all the rest. We promote your address (or addresses if you have multiple locations), any services you provide are invoiced each month. We retain a fee and issue payment of the published virtual office retail rate within 15 business days from invoice receipt (guaranteed).
- Meeting Rooms. This is very similar to Virtual Offices. Workspace providers allow us to sell day office and conference room space, in addition to related business services. We retain a fee and issue payment within 15 business days of invoice receipt.
- Full-Time Space Referrals. We generate many full-time office space leads and upgrades to full-time office space from Virtual Office and Address customers every month. We simply ask for a standard referral commission of the agreed upon lease value.
- Communications Services. Our Communications Services consist of Live Receptionist and Live Web Chat services. We have two partner models when it comes to our Communications Services. The Affiliate Partner model pays a one-time bounty based on the communications services sold. The second is a Contract Model, whereby members of the Davinci Preferred Partner Network contract on a wholesale basis for Live Receptionist services and/or a specified number of Live Web Chat interactions.
Workspace providers that join the Davinci Preferred Partner Network literally generate tens of thousands—or even hundreds of thousands—of dollars in new revenue each year. Our turnkey solutions are easy to implement and put the ownership for marketing, sales, payment processing, compliance, and other factors on us. In addition, increasing numbers of Davinci Preferred Network Partners are outsourcing their communications services to us—both Live Receptionists and Live Web Chat. This allows them to focus on their businesses, while leveraging our expertise to drive better service, higher revenues, and better margins.
Martin Senn has been enjoying the creation and successful execution of many technology- and service-related ventures for the past 25 years. He is very passionate about building businesses from the ground up by leveraging cutting-edge technologies, innovation, and outstanding people. Martin currently leads all business operations at Davinci Virtual Office Solutions. He credits his international upbringing and Swiss approach for many of his successes. Stress relievers include skiing, tennis, mountain biking, and blue oceans.