As long as the following remains true, we will continue to remind you and give you proof: meeting rooms are your most profitable asset!
And although some have preached this for quite a few years by now, experts believe that most flexible workspace operators haven’t yet unleashed the true power (or should we say potential) of their workspace meeting rooms. And by meeting rooms, we don’t just mean large conference or training rooms, we mean every single type of meeting room that can hold from 2 people all the way to 150+.
The tools, the software, the platforms, and the clients are all out there; it’s just a question of whether you, as flexible workspace manager, have embraced all of these factors to work to your advantage.
Take the case of Asian Pacific Serviced Offices (APSO), for example.
APSO provide flexible fully furnished offices in a variety of locations Australia wide, as well as virtual offices and an array of boardroom and conferencing facilities.
Less than a year ago, the Australian serviced workspace provider was still using a manual system to book its meeting rooms, charge clients for them, and keep track of usage and revenue. Needless to say, the ‘system’ wasn’t very efficient.
“It really was a back and forth, convoluted system,” said Alison Gunn, Assistant Business Manager and Conferencing Sales Coordinator, via a phone interview.
“We had outlook calendars, one for each boardroom. We would have to manually put in the booking client, then we had to send a credit card authorization form, once we received that from the client, we would manually prepare an invoice and charge them.”
“With our manual system, we couldn’t really track revenue, which meant it was hard to put in last minute revenue strategies to reach or exceed our goals. From a strategy perspective to measure ROI and profit, we had no way of knowing how we were actually performing.”
Meeting room bookings account for at least 15-20% of APSO’s revenue.
Imagine not being able to account for and plan on 20% of your revenue.
Less than a year ago, APSO began using Meeting Hub, an online booking platform, to help them manage, track, and obtain data about their meeting room usage and revenue.
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“I was hired to manage all external bookings. My background is in the hotel and hospitality industry, and I had a lot of experience with booking systems, which also meant high expectations. Due to the variety of clients and types of memberships that APSO has, I was searching for a platform that would allow us to set different filters and prices for different clients.”
“Meeting Hub met most of the criteria, and it helped reduce my workload about 70%; giving me more time to focus on improving other areas and services of APSO. After working together with the Meeting Hub team, we were able to take the platform to where we needed it to be to work for our advantage.”
There are various software systems and platforms out there similar to Meeting Hub that can help workspace operators increase their revenue by making administrative processes simpler and more efficient.
“We now have the tools and the ability to track as we go, to see where we’re sitting at any time. It’s also provided us with valuable data about how our clients use our meeting rooms, when they use them the most, and the most popular type of meeting room.”
“For example, we now know that our most popular sized bookings are in our 12-14 seat boardrooms, with the average meeting being 10 people. We also know that these bookings tend to be a half-day or full day booking. Knowing this allows us to make better and informed decisions on how to improve our services and offerings.”
And this has led to a 10% increase in meeting room bookings only in the short-span of 6 months.
The take-away lesson here is that meeting rooms are a truly valuable asset.
Flexible workspace operators can easily increase their revenue (and give their staff more time to focus on nurturing their workspace community) if they make some simple changes to their management and administrative processes.