Over the years, researches have been conducted on the psychology of the employees and the influence of office working conditions to gain better productivity. The key to keeping employees happy and productive is having a mix of spaces for different activities. According to a study by design firm Gensler, it was found that workers spend more than half their time at work in deep focus and about one-fourth in collaboration, with the rest split between learning, socializing and other tasks.
Of course, people who work in an office still spend most of the day at their desks, but when it’s time to do some hard-core collaborating or learning, moving to a different environment can help shift gears. Delegate a larger central “community” table where conversation and ideas can flow freely and encourage an environment of mindful chatter amongst neighboring desks.
All of this clearly indicate that an office can either stress people out or make them creative and happy. A new change of environment will always help your employees to brainstorm better while working, billion dollar companies like Facebook and Google have incorporated this very idea into their workspace. When it comes to small and medium enterprise companies, this had been a luxurious expenditure. Now what if one could search and choose a work place and book it using a smartphone app? With changing work patterns in India, a workplace has ceased to be that one fixed building in the commercial centre you used to commute 20-30 kilometres away. The anytime, anywhere workplace trend is catching up, slowly redefining our relationships with our workplaces.
With an investment corpus of $10 million, entrepreneurs Ms. Radha Kapoor (Daughter of Yes Banker Founder Rana Kapoor) and Mr. Amit Ramani have co-founded AWFIS Space Solutions. AWFIS is the first company in this space which has introduced a simple mobile app that enables users to find and book office and meeting spaces in its centres across the country. Just like taxi booking apps, users can book workspaces and meeting rooms on a real time; the bookings can be made for durations ranging from 1 hour to 11 months. Techstory spoke with Mr. Amit Ramani, Founder and CEO of AWFIS Space Solutions is the new office that is redefining the way work gets done in the current business environment, by providing the ecosystem of workspaces for the Small Medium Individual Local Entrepreneurs (SMILE).
The expansion of corporate and the growth of startups have had a direct impact on the real estate business due to increase in demand of office spaces. According to the findings of CBRE’s latest report, India Office Market View for Q4 2015, absorption of Grade-A office space across key cities in India witnessed a quarterly growth of approximately 26 per cent during the October-December period, translating into more than 12 million sq ft of leased office space. Office space absorption rose by 17 per cent this year to 35 million square feet in seven major cities, mainly due to demand from IT/ITeS, e-commerce companies and start-ups, according to property consultant JLL India.
“The Real Estates has been black and yellow for a long time and the shared economy assets is shared in bite sizes. Looking at the market we created our own service centres to act as labs for innovation. These centres provide Just In Time services with the aid of technology platform built exclusively for the consumers.”
This can be the ideal model for professionals working from home and allows them to work near home in order to avoid distractions. Office is aimed at providing an environment for a whole community of inspiring people who are looking into working at different geographies to be more effective.
When Awfis was first launched the entire mindset of the people had to be changed. The JIT model for meeting rooms and office desks faced competition from conventional office users and the touch and feel experience was able to convince them. Apart from its own managed pro-working spaces, Awfis is offering a large repository of listed third-party meeting rooms in hotels in various cities. As for as hotel meeting spaces goes, this was a new ecosystem and the technology had to be synced in real time for smooth bookings of spaces in a matter of seconds. They also had to convince the conventional 4 hours or 8 hours window of meeting timings provided by the hotels to hourly prices, the disparity in prices during booking was another major concern for which the price parity’s data analytics are provided to make the hotels understand the issue.
“Office spaces under this venture are available on a membership basis, as well as an on-off basis. The prices range from Rs 350 a day to Rs 11,000 a month for work stations; meeting rooms are available for anywhere between Rs 500 an hour to Rs 3,500 a day.”
The Just In Time platform should definitely solve the problem of startups who hold occasional meetups at a cafeteria or a hotel lobby, most of them crave for features like privacy, wireless and printing facilities. Moreover, the primary reason to choose cafeteria would’ve been to reduce the cost of a permanent or leased office space, but end up spending more than the actual office budgets.
To bring in more value to the customers, the start-up has formed strategic alliances with leading service providers in the space of accounting, legal, recruitment, insurance, web services and a bouquet of essential services that allows them to avail discounted and preferential access to their services. AWFIS is also providing a platform for its community members to regularly interact, network as well as share ideas at events and seminars.
For a star experience in the hotel meeting space, awfis has partnership with star hotel brands like the Trident, Taj, Lemon Tree, etc.
AWFIS is also partnering with India’s leading real estate companies and hospitality players, and aggregating the under-utilized work-spaces, meeting rooms, for creation of Awfis centres. All the centres and managed and operated by Awfis team providing a consistent and streamlined customer experience.
The Awfis community is a group of 75 spirited individuals working out of their laptops with flexible seating spaces as a team across 3 different locations.
“We are looking to expand in such a way that there would be an Awfis center within every 10-minutes’ drive and very soon people should want to give up their office spaces like they gave up their cars for on-demand taxis”
In less than a year the startup has emerged as India’s largest co-working company, offering 1,500 seats across Mumbai, Delhi and Mumbai and they want to expand it up to 10,000 seats covering over 2,o00,000 square feet of office space by December end.