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LEASING MONK

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Transforming the Remote Work Landscape through Innovative Coworking Experiences.

Status: Live

Overview

Leasing Monk streamlines deal closures for brokers and owners with intuitive PropTech and predictive analytics, saving time and effort. In 2020, it entered the co-working space sector to adapt to remote work trends accelerated by COVID restrictions.

My Contribution

I spearheaded the design process for their mobile app and customer relationship management platform, overseeing it from concept to execution.

Timeline

3 months (May - July 2020)

My Team

Myself (Senior Product Designer)

1 Junior designer
1 Product Manager

Problem

How might we design solutions to support employees in adapting to full-time remote work, while also addressing the challenges space owners encounter in renting out physical office spaces?

Employees faced challenges separating work from personal life, compounded by technical issues like unreliable internet connectivity, leading to frustration.

Space owners grapple with declining occupancy rates due to the rise of home-based work arrangements, resulting in a surplus of commercial spaces and marketing challenges.

"Imagine the Office of Your Dreams: Work, Network, and Thrive without Equipment or Connectivity Concerns, Right in Your Neighborhood!"

Solution- A co-working app for users and a dashboard for brokers and space owners

Design solution

Leasing Monk provides premium coworking experiences through flexible subscriptions, giving you the freedom to work anywhere you choose.

Effortlessly handle assignments, attend meetings, and build business connections hassle-free, without worrying about equipment, unreliable internet, or finding quiet meeting rooms wherever you go.

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Co-working App for Employees

How does it work?

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Start with exploring co-working spaces near you
1) Browse through the nearby coworking spaces based on amenities, offerings, locations, reviews, and more.

Select the pricing plan according to your preferences
2) Select a pricing plan based on your preference, with options for daily, weekly, and monthly visit subscriptions.

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Check in to your workspace and book amenities.
3)Upon arrival at your workspace, check-in and access various amenities and benefits. 

Check in to your network and build community
4) Upon check-in, connect with others sharing the workspace and expand your network

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Customer Relationship Management platform for space owners and Leasing Monk admins

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Access a centralized dashboard for RFQs, proposals, client details, and schedules.
As a Leasing Monk agent, effortlessly manage RFQs, listings, proposals, and appointments through our user-friendly LRM dashboard.

A user-friendly dashboard helping companies specify workspace needs and space owners streamline leasing.
As a prospective customer, easily explore properties within your budget and requirements details anytime, anywhere.

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IMPACT

+$25 Mn worth of deals managed on Leasing Monk CRM platform

The company has business growth of 17% after the launch

Created an easy design system  which facilitated the design of 70+ screens in 15 days

So how did we get here?

The Problem

We learned through desk research that many people face challenges while working from home. While the remote work experience offers convenience, the associated tasks and adjustments can often be stressful and overwhelming.

Some of the difficulties people are facing are feelings of isolation, distractions from household chores and family, difficulty in separating work from personal life, technical issues, uncomfortable workspaces, etc. I have tried to depict the problems through the below storyboard.

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Some of the hypotheses I had going into primary research were:

  1. Providing ergonomic home office setups could significantly enhance the pleasantness of the work-from-home experience for individuals.

  2. Integrating regular virtual team-building activities and fostering a sense of community will decrease feelings of isolation and boost morale among remote workers.

  3. Offering technical support for remote work tools and software will improve confidence and competence among employees, leading to increased efficiency and satisfaction.

  4. Increased flexibility in work hours and allowing employees to structure their schedules will improve work-life balance and job satisfaction.

Research

I wanted to understand what frustrations employees experience in remote work setup and what support they think could help they need to help them get better adjusted.

To get a clearer understanding of the experiences of remote work from home experiences, I conducted generative qualitative research using two research methods.

Method #1

Semi-Structured Interview

Goals:

1) To explore personal experiences, challenges, and specific nuances related to working from home.

2) The detailed impact of remote work on their daily lives and what they do to cope up with the challenges. 

Method #2

Online Observations

Goals:

1)To observe whether factors like age, gender, nature of work, culture, and region play a role in shaping the work-from-home experience.

2) To learn the successful practices implemented by various companies for work-from-home settings and gain insights and inspiration from it.

Method #3

Focus Group

Goals:

1) The primary goal is to identify common themes, differences, and similarities in the challenges experienced by a group of individuals.

2) Test some of the early design ideas to see what people thing about it.

We started to see a pattern early in our research that above everything, people “hate” to work alone for a long period of time. Collaborative energy significantly contributes to improved work dynamics and facilitates mutual learning among people.

“I feel disconnected and less motivated without the everyday interactions with my colleagues” - P1

“Extended periods of working alone at home have a noticeable impact on my mental well-being” - P2

“I've found that remote work diminishes the sense of belonging to a team. It's the shared experiences and group synergy that really foster a sense of community and purpose.” - P3

“A desire for a mix of remote and in-office work” - P4

“Remote work is more enjoyable when it's balanced with some in-person interaction” - P5

“Working from home limits the spontaneous discussions and shared problem-solving moments” - P6

And I affinity diagrammed to find themes and patterns in our research.

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Insights & Design Opportunities

Through this initial research, I identified that 70% of individuals favor a hybrid work style. This investigation allowed me to derive valuable insights and recognize potential design opportunities. These findings significantly influenced our future brainstorming sessions aimed at creating the ideal co-working space. The research also brought to light key reasons why individuals refrain from using co-working spaces, citing high financial commitments, concerns regarding privacy, and a general lack of awareness about these shared work environments.

01

Tailored Work Environment

Help users to personalize their workspace based on their tasks or projects, not just by the standard desk or office space. For instance, they might want a quiet area for focused work, a collaborative space for team meetings, or a creative zone for brainstorming sessions.

Offering workspace categorization based on activities can enhance productivity and the overall co-working experience.

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"I miss different types of workspace that the office provides depending on the task at hand. That is not something I think the home environment can provide and I feel like I would want to join a co-working space for." P1

"I want to choose a workspace that matches my work style, equipped with facilities and amenities I would need at my disposal." - P 5

02

Enhanced Community Connectivity

Users seek tools to connect with like-minded professionals, enabling them to share skills, projects, and ideas easily. Having features that facilitate networking and collaboration within the co-working community can help users build their personal connections, expand their professional network, and can foster a feeling of a more interconnected community.

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Networking opportunities catering to specific professional and personal interests within the co-working space would be invaluable.” - P4

"Oftentimes we get so busy in our day-to-day office work that we don't stop to assess our growth in soft skills like interpersonal, leadership etc. A co-working space which helps us grow and learn new things on a continuous basis would be fun to go to"-P2

03

Flexible Payment Methods and Scalable Options

An app offering various payment methods and flexible payment options is essential. Providing the ability to pay via different channels, such as credit cards or debit cards, different wallet options as well as various subscription plans. Additionally, an app that allows for scalable options, enabling users to easily upgrade or downgrade their membership plans based on their evolving needs or financial situations, would add value to the service.

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Oftentimes, I take a service like the gym and do not end up going half the days, I just end up spending money without utilizing the service, so a co-working space where I only pay for what I am using is something I would prefer- P3

04

Make Workspace Discovery an Exciting Experience

Users often find it challenging to discover the right co-working spaces and often feel overwhelmed with options. The application should not just recommend spaces but also create an exciting experience for users during the discovery process. This might include virtual tours, interactive features, and personalized suggestions, ultimately making the planning and selection of a workspace a delightful experience.

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"Finding the right co-working space shouldn't be a chore; it should be a thrilling journey filled with possibilities."-P6

We had to consider that our focal users are remote employees seeking a fresh and convenient work experience in the current era of working from home.

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And our goal was:

How might we make the process of finding the right co-working space more enjoyable
and
efficient?

Brainstorm

Ideation

The team initiated the ideation process by categorizing related features into cohesive groups for analysis. Ideas were systematically classified based on feasibility, resulting in a distinction between out-of-the-box, achievable, and impractical concepts. Furthermore, features were prioritized into must-have, can-have, and not-have categories. The spectrum of generated ideas encompassed immersive technologies such as AR/VR, service-oriented solutions, and mobile applications.

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Concept Development

Having thoroughly analyzed the issues that users are currently experiencing and ideated possible solutions, I proceeded to create a comprehensive feature list. The feature list was categorized into sections and sub-sections, with the main USP of the brand being to foster a sense of community among employees that extends beyond their individual companies.

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Lean Canvas

To make sure our priorities were aligned as a service, we developed a lean canvas.

The lean canvas helped our team visualize the business from the front and center. By creating the lean canvas, we were able to identify the key points of the service.

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Wireframes

Once we had the service figured out, I began designing wireframes for the product.

Although the customer journey was helpful to understand our users thoughts and actions throughout the service, the service blueprint was more helpful in laying out the inner workings of the service.

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Usability Testing and Iteration

Conducted 8 in-person usability testing sessions with different stakeholders-space-owners, LM agents, and customers.

As a  designer with a strong commitment to accessibility, I took proactive measures to ensure that the application I designed not only met but surpassed the standards outlined in the WCAG guidelines.

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Design System

Glimpse of reusable pattern library 

The design system for Leasing Monk is built with a primary focus on web applications. The overarching goal is to facilitate rapid iteration and expedite the design process, enabling the development of high-quality designs at an accelerated pace. This approach emphasizes efficiency and agility in responding to evolving requirements and user feedback.

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Takeaways & Reflection

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DESIGN FOR HUMAN

Understanding end-users is integral to my design process. By immersing myself in their perspective, I empathize with their needs and limitations, ensuring my designs resonate with diverse human experiences.

KEEP ITERATING 

Designing great user experiences is a continuous journey of learning, exploration, and refinement. Iteration is crucial for unlocking a design's full potential and evolving with each improvement.

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