A coworking space manager is the secret sauce to a thriving coworking community.
They are the unicorns of the space – the fast-thinkers, the problem-solvers…the shoulder to cry on and the person cheering you on to do your best work.
Finding a great coworking community manager is about knowing who you’re looking for and creating a hiring process that helps separate the good from the absolute best.
This article was created to be your one-stop shop for hiring a great community manager. By the end of this guide, you’ll have all the knowledge you need to define, find, and hire an exceptional team member for your space.
What is a coworking community manager?
A coworking space manager, also known as a community manager or coworking community manager, is the face of your coworking space and the first touch point for your members.
They are the person who checks people in, makes the coffee, fixes the WiFi, chats with your members, creates your social content, and everything in between.
When you’re first starting your coworking business, your community manager may be yourself, especially if you’re trying to keep your costs low. Or, you may choose to automate your coworking space and not hire a community manager at all.
Regardless, having a good understanding of the coworking community manager role will help you have a better understanding of the coworking business and be more effective in how you set up your operations.
What does a coworking space manager do?
Coworking space managers are multi-faceted individuals who wear many different hats including marketer, receptionist, salesperson, tour guide, and more.
Their exact role will depend on the needs of your space. Below, we’ll break down what the typical coworking space manager role includes across five categories.
- Handle invoicing, payments, and membership agreements
- Manage the coworking space software
- Coordinate mail and package deliveries
- Visitor management
Sales and marketing
- Manage social media accounts
- Facilitate tours
- Follow up with potential leads
- Write blogs or create other marketing content
- Answer and forward calls
- Manage virtual mail or virtual coworking services and clients
- Make coffee and refill snacks
- Stock office and kitsch supplies
- Clean and tidy the space throughout the day
- Host events in the space
- Solve disputes between members
- Greet members when they enter the space
- Facilitate connections between members
Coworking operators are in the business of hospitality. Community managers play a large part in creating a pleasant environment for members.
At the end of the day, the number one priority of your community manager should be to provide an outstanding experience for your members. This is what is going to stand out in the minds of your members.
Conducting a community manager job analysis
Now that you understand what a community manager is and what their job may entail, it’s time to conduct a community manager job analysis.
A coworking space manager job analysis will help you figure out the scope of the position you’re hiring for including roles, responsibilities, requirements, and expectations.
A job analysis is standard practice when hiring for a role. It involves conducting research via other job descriptions, identifying the required outcomes for the job, examining job efficiencies, and determining if training is required.
For a community manager position in a coworking space, a job analysis may involve the following steps:
1. Review the job requirements
Think about exactly what it is that you need your community manager to do. Will they be a generalist who is expected to troubleshoot WiFi problems and greet members with a smile? Or would you prefer a specialist who is a wiz at social media with limited experience in hospitality?
Start by getting clear about the requirements that you need in your space and write them down. This ensures you include exactly what you’re looking for when it comes time to create the job listing.
2. Analyze existing job listings
Chances are, there are a ton of existing job listings and job descriptions for a community manager already (we even include an example later in this article).
Analyze what exists in the market already to get a sense of what is typical. Pay attention to things like:
- Typical and recurring responsibilities
- Any speciality experience or education that is required
- Fair compensation for your geographic location
3. Identify outcomes required for the job
What would success in this role look like? What do you hope your coworking manager will help you achieve?
For coworking spaces, the outcome of a successful community manager may mean the space is clean and well-stocked, members feel comfortable and supported, and leads are being followed up with on a consistent basis.
Many leaders agree that poor hiring decisions happen when they are not clear on what success in the role looks like. This is a very important step that you won’t want to skip!
4. Determine the skills and training required for the role
What specific skills are required to achieve the desired outcome that you defined? If a candidate does not possess these skills, how much training will you provide?
Every candidate will require some level of training to become familiar with your space and how your business operates. However, determining up front whether you are looking for someone with no experience, 1-2 years of experience, or 4+ years of experience will help you filter the right candidates through your evaluation process.
5. Define the compensation
One of the most important steps in the job analysis process is defining the compensation for the role. This will be highly dependent on where you’re located, your budget, the tasks you’re asking your candidates to perform, and their level of experience.
Community managers can be paid anywhere from minimum wage to $30+ USD an hour. When creating a job description, it’s always best to include a salary range of the upper and lower limit for the role for transparency.
How to write a coworking community manager job description
After you conduct a job analysis, you’ll need to write a great job description for your listing. Here are some best practices to follow when writing your job description for your superstar community manager.
Implement a clear structure
Most job descriptions follow a similar structure, whether you’re writing them for a role in a coworking space or not. That structure typically includes:
- About the job: explaining the company and the role at a high level
- Key duties and responsibilities: detailed description of what the duties of the role will be
- Skills & Experience: key skills that the candidate will be bringing to the role
- Education: any required education or certificates
- Salary: anticipated salary range
- Perks and bonus: additional benefits outside of compensation
You don’t need to follow this structure exactly. However, these are all things you’ll want to ensure are accounted for in your JD.
Aim for 300-600 words
Be detailed in your description…but not too detailed. Aim for your description to be between 300 and 600 words. You want to make sure you’re giving candidates enough information about the role, without overwhelming them.
Focus on what you can offer
Many job descriptions focus solely on what they are looking for in a candidate. One way to stand out and to show you are a desirable place to work is to focus on what you as an organization can offer your candidates.
Whether that’s free snacks, team-bonding events, or extended health coverage, remember to focus your attention on what a candidate is receiving rather than just what is required of them.
Include keywords that are not specific to coworking in the job description (ie. receptionist, hospitality, waitress, etc.)
Although coworking is growing in popularity, it is still a relatively new sector in the flex industry. Therefore, it may be challenging to find people who have worked as a community manager before, especially if you’re operating a rural coworking space or a place where coworking is less known.
However, the skills of a community manager are highly transferable from other customer service or receptionist type positions. You may have luck with adding keywords like “receptionist” or “customer service attendant” to your job descriptions, or including in your Requirements & Skills section that any hospitality experience is a bonus – not just coworking!.
Let your personality shine
Add your personality into the job description and look for ways you can creatively convey the information you’re presenting. At the end of the day, it is as much about making your organization appealing to job applicants as it is about finding the right person for the role.
Example of a coworking space manager job description
Looking for an example of a job description for your community manager role? Below is one example that you can tailor to fit the needs of your space.
This organization approached the description with a story-telling format, included what they offer, and put their accommodation policy at the end. Use this as inspiration for your own JD!
Los Angeles, California
[Summary of company] We’ve built the world’s largest workspace network so that our customers can work better, faster, and happier. Join the team in one of our coworking spaces. Promote our products and services to new and existing customers. Bring more freedom to more people and businesses. And you’ll be able to work better, faster and happier too.
[Summary of role] As a Community Manager, you’ll be responsible for the smooth running of the space. You’ll motivate your team to create a great working environment to ensure customer satisfaction and retention.
A typical day
[Role duties] You start the day with an informal team talk over coffee, to plan the day and make sure everyone’s prepared.
With one eye always on reception, you see members turning up and also the first meeting rooms guests arriving. You welcome them and take them to their meeting room, show them the facilities and help them set up their WiFi connections and AV system for their presentation.
Later you have a meeting to learn more about a new member and get to understand his business needs. You think about the other members and how you might be able to introduce him to a couple that may be of interest at the networking event later in the week.
A large company is taking a whole floor of the space and is moving in next week. You run through the move in detail with the reception team, ensuring the welcome kit is prepared, and all badges and keys are ready for handing over.
At lunchtime a couple walks in enquiring about coworking membership. Your colleague from sales is on their lunch break so you offer them a coffee and give them a tour of the coworking space, explaining all the benefits of membership.
Later in the afternoon you host a monthly operations meeting for Community Managers from your local cluster of spaces, along with the regional Operations Manager. After the meeting you do a final walk around the building, speaking with members, asking how their day went as they start to wind down and head for home.
[Requirements] We’re looking for someone who has the experience and aptitude to manage a smooth running operation. You’ll need to be an accomplished multitasker, able to pre-empt issues before they become problems, and keep a team motivated and focused on service excellence. You also need to be:
- A good communicator, used to dealing with customers – ideally in the hospitality or events industry
- Happy taking ownership of problems and finding ways to solve them
- Positive, enthusiastic and able to adapt to fast-changing situations
- Confident using MS Office and other basic IT packages
What we offer
[What we offer] On top of a competitive salary package you’ll enjoy:
- A bright and inspiring work environment
- Training and development opportunities
- The best coffee for free
[Accommodation] We are committed to treating all people in a way that allows them to maintain their dignity and independence. We believe in integration and equal opportunity. Accommodations are available upon request for all applicants with a disability throughout the recruitment process.
There is no single “right way” to write a job description. Focus on making it an interesting, exciting, and accurate reflection of your space to attract the right kind of candidates to the role.
Pro tip: Post your ad on multiple places including LinkedIn, Indeed, Reddit, and coworking specific job sites like coworkies.com/jobs to increase your chances of finding the right candidate.
Tips for hiring a community manager for your coworking space
Hiring your first community manager is a huge step for budding coworking spaces. Here are five tips to make sure you get it right!
1. Only hire when you can financially support it
First-time operators can sometimes make the mistake of bringing people and tools on before they’re financially ready.
It’s important to understand that community managers are not cheap. If you’re based in North America, you may expect to pay between $400 and $1,000 a week for your community manager depending on their roles and responsibilities, if not more.
Make sure you have the cash flow to support bringing another person on board before you begin the hiring process. If you are in need of some extra help, but can’t afford a full-time manager, consider looking into a community volunteer, virtual assistant or running your coworking space autonomously.
2. Separate the need-to-haves from the nice-to-have qualities
Finding a community manager who has sales experience, a customer service background, social media experience, is great with technology, and can make a mean cup of coffee can feel next to impossible.
Before you begin your search, write out all of the qualities your perfect community manager possesses. Then list these qualities in order of importance to you.
For example, maybe your space is known for being warm, welcoming, and community-driven. Hiring an extraverted community manager with strong interpersonal skills will be an absolute must, while other qualities, like SEO or IT experience, may come second to that.
Think about exactly what it is that your space needs and keep these qualities top-of-mind in the hiring process.
3. Include coworking specific behavioral questions in the interview process
Behavioral questions are a must in any interview process. Tailor yours to the coworking experience by asking questions specific to common occurrences in your coworking space.
Here are a few examples:
- There is a member in the space who frequently disrupts other members while they’re working. How would you handle this situation?
- You get to the space in the morning and realize that the coffee machine is broken. What do you do?
- Members are abusing the phone booth and not following booking policies on a regular basis. What do you do to ensure this doesn’t happen?
You’re looking for answers that show you how the candidate handles difficult or uncomfortable situations. Qualities like patience, understanding, and adaptiveness go a long way in these situations.
4. Look for a community manager who fits the energy of your space
Every coworking space has its own unique energy. Some are vibrant, community-driven parties while others appeal to a more laid-back crowd.
When hiring your community manager, look for someone with a personality that will fit well with your space and your members.
At the end of the day, any skill can be taught. It’s more important to find people with the right personality who are a right cultural fit for the space. It will make you (and them) enjoy the role a lot more.
5. Prioritize people who are great at attracting and retaining members
You can think of the community manager’s responsibilities as falling into one of two categories: attracting and retaining.
- Attracting members: this includes things like following up with leads, managing social media accounts, updating the website, and giving a great tour.
- Retaining members: this includes things like engaging the community, holding events, and seamlessly managing the day-to-day operations of the space.
Ideally you’ll find a community manager who is great at both – someone who has the sales skills necessary to bring people in and the hospitality skills necessary to get people to stay. But if you need to prioritize one skillset over the other, it’s best to figure that out before you begin the hiring process.
Set yourself up for hiring success
Hiring a community manager is a huge milestone for new coworking operators.
They act as a vital link between your space and its members, shaping the environment, encouraging collaboration, and ensuring a positive experience for members.
By following a careful hiring process that considers both qualifications and cultural fit, you can find the right person to lead your coworking community.
Keep in mind that a skilled community manager not only manages the physical space but also fosters a thriving community where members feel valued, connected, and motivated
Prepare yourself for success by doing as much research as you can before beginning the hiring process. Want to learn more about hiring for your coworking space?