The business centre industry has diversified enormously in recent years – and if you look close enough, you may find a treasure trove of potential partnership opportunities right here.
Operators have gone beyond the traditional concept of serviced and managed offices and incorporated greater versatility into their offering to meet changing workplace needs.
Serviced and managed offices aside, the sector is home to alternative forms of office space including coworking venues, hot-desks, shared workspace and business lounges. There are on-demand meeting and conference rooms. Industrial and manufacturing spaces. Flexible business storage solutions. And a blossoming virtual office sector that incorporates everything from mailing address services to day office hire.
There is strength in diversity, and strength in numbers – and the industry benefits from both.
However, the sector could become stronger still.
To each other, workspace operators are competitors – even across sub-sectors. For instance, many traditional business centre operators are pushing the boundaries and adding new services, such as coworking spaces and meeting rooms. Some coworking spaces upsell clients to private office suites. And industrial units frequently provide office space.
As we’ve explored before, these hybrid workspaces are creating new competition. Or are they? What if, rather than competition, you could engage other workspace operators as partners?
Take the virtual office model for instance. Most business centres already incorporate virtual office services into their offering, which might include business address services and meeting room hire. If you don’t already offer a similar service, you could partner with an established virtual office provider and incorporate sophisticated call answering services into the mix. Perhaps opt for a proactive supplier that offers holiday cover for reception staff or back-up call services.
Consider partnering with recommended virtual assistants to provide additional help with admin tasks, data entry, perhaps even specialised services like marketing and web design. Again, you may already offer these services yourself. But during busy periods it could pay dividends to have a partner on standby to take on the extra workload.
The storage model is another example. By partnering with an affordable storage supplier, you can not only free up valuable space in your property but provide an essential value-add service for clients too.
Let’s say your client needs large amounts of storage space for stock, or perhaps they’re an HR or law firm with a lorry-load of archives. Either way, if you can free up their (expensive) office space and shift some of the storage burden onto a partner operator, you’ll demonstrate just how far you’re prepared to go in the name of customer service.
Think outside the box and keep an ear to the ground for trusted local suppliers. There is strength in diversity. Partnering with the right operators will add enormous value to your service, and it could represent a lucrative opportunity, too.
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Look to your competitors and consider how you could harness their services to improve your service to clients. After all with competition intensifying, if you can’t beat them, why not join them?Share this article