Adam Hyman is the founder of KoWorks, a mission-driven organization that is working to activate underutilized spaces and turn them into beautiful and vibrant coworking communities.
Since opening their first location at the end of 2021, Adam has facilitated meaningful connections amongst members, supported local small businesses, and pledged to donate $1 million over the next three years to local organizations.
With two operating locations (and three more on the way), it’s clear that the KoWorks brand and mission has resonated with the greater community. This incredible growth can be attributed in part to being forward-thinking, putting the community first, and creating a seamless experience for every person who walks through their doors.
Here’s how Adam has leveraged Optix to elevate his community and grow his business to two locations in less than two years.
“KoWorks exists to unlock underutilized community spaces by turning them into beautiful and vibrant coworking communities. And we use the term community because community is the core of KoWorks. We're more than just a desk and we're more than just a coworking space.”
Build vs buy
Adam did a lot of research around management solutions on the market before opening the first KoWorks location. He had experiences at previous organizations with building in-house technology solutions, and he knew this was not the way he wanted to go at KoWorks.
However, he also knew that he needed to be able to build on top of and customize whatever solution they chose to ensure it fit their unique needs. He needed something that would be polished enough to launch immediately, but flexible enough to evolve as the business grew.
This led him and the team to explore a variety of space management solutions on the market. They demoed a number of providers in hopes of finding the perfect solution to support their ambitious plans.
“Coming from the past in building software in previous companies, we spent too much money on development and also too much time. So for us, cost and time were a big factor in the decision making process.”
There were a few things that attracted Adam to Optix in his search for coworking software.
First, Adam was looking for something that would enable their space to be mobile-first and cashless. He wanted members to be able to download an app, add their card details, and subscribe to a membership plan seamlessly from day one.
Second, Adam wanted a platform with flexibility. He needed to be able to test different product offerings, build on top of the solution, and mold it in a way that fit his business – while still having the solution be ready to go out of the box.
Finally, Adam wanted a software partner that would support him in his mission of cultivating community amongst his members. He liked that Optix went deep in community building features where other platforms did not.
It was a combination of these factors that ultimately led him to selecting Optix as his technology partner at KoWorks.
“One of the key pieces for us was being able to go straight to market with a fully polished app and web experience, but with the ability to add our flavor and add our customization down the line.”
Growing the business and community
Since implementing Optix, Adam and the KoWorks team have added over 750 members and opened a second location in less than two years. Here are some of the exciting ways the team is using Optix to power their business.
Automating Invoicing and Payments
Having a fully automated invoicing and payment system is critical when scaling a coworking business. The sophistication of the Optix invoicing system – from the way invoices are charged automatically to how credits are managed in the platform – means that Adam doesn’t have to manage invoicing on the day-to-day.
His community managers can easily go into the system and see all invoice information at a glance, enabling him to grow a team of operators without requiring extensive platform training.
Maximizing the Developer Platform
The Optix Developer Platform allows clients to build custom apps and integrations with Optix. Adam and the KoWorks team is using the Developer platform to build their own native integration with their local access control system to enable keyless access to the space.
This integration connects their access control system and security cameras with Optix, giving members the ability to tap-to-unlock all doors with their Optix app. All of this has been custom built using the Optix Developer platform, giving Adam the freedom to customize Optix to fit his needs.
Guiding decision making with Analytics
Optix offers a variety of Analytic dashboards and reports, from check-in heat maps to revenue forecasting graphs and more. Adam is using this data to provide updates to investors and get a clear idea of where the business is having the most success and where they can improve.
He is also using the analytics to create benchmarks in terms of location growth, with the plan of feeding these back to community managers. This gives the team realistic targets to aim for in growing while strengthening overall decision making in the space.
Connecting the community with Announcements and the Community Feed
When there’s an event coming up, the team will send a push notification or add an announcement to the Community Feed to keep their members informed as to what’s happening in the space.
They also use messaging to communicate with their members and to facilitate communication between members. Since launching, over 5,000 messages have been sent within their app, supporting their mission in bringing people together in a big way!
“I don’t think we’ve ever had to do too much training, and I think that speaks volumes to the simplicity of the platform. A community manager can pick up the admin tool, log in, and navigate their way around without having to do a three or four week onboarding journey.”
What’s next for KoWorks?
When asked what he felt most proud of when it comes to KoWorks, Adam said, seeing the friendships.
“It’s pretty amazing that you can go out to a cafe in a local area away from KoWorks and bump into two people who are KoWorks members having coffee together that were strangers before. It’s saying that if we hadn’t created that environment or that community or that business, those two people would not have met.”
Adam and the growing team plan to continue to strive towards their mission of unlocking underutilized spaces and creating a sustainable work lifestyle for their members. With three locations coming soon, they’re well on their way to facilitating meaningful connections and making an impact well beyond the communities they’re a part of.
We’re proud to support such an inspiring space in their mission to elevate the way their members work!