Dallas-Based Officeable.com is a tech platform created to turn underutilized office space into income for property owners, lessors, coworking spaces, and homeowners. For remote workers who are looking for a new workspace, it offers a private working environment without a membership, subscription, or lease.
Matthew Barge, CEO and founder of Officeable.com, has been tracking a rising trend in the office space market: “Companies are looking for smaller, shorter-term space while the market provides larger, longer-term space,” he told Dallas Innovates. Officeable.com seeks to mend this mismatch with its tech platform that connects underutilized office space with clients looking for shorter-term options.
In 2017, Barge built a short-term rental business through Airbnb. While running his successful Airbnb business, he noticed two things. The first was when the pandemic hit. “I noticed changes in the reasons clients were booking my properties,” Barge says. “I saw increased demand for desks and office-style features in my listings, and that has not slowed down as the economy has been reopening.”
Then as he talked to commercial property managers about their vacant space, Barge noticed they lacked tech tools and “weren’t well-positioned to adapt to today’s office worker.”
Barge says he was “uniquely positioned to create value by using my programming skills and the infrastructure I created for my Airbnb business to help office managers run a commercial rental business.”
Short-term space solution
Officeable.com is a tech platform—not a space provider. The company builds the software technology necessary for property managers to run their commercial space efficiently. Short-term reservations are typically a pain point for lessors, Barge says “They’re worried about how much work it’s going to be to administer those short-term reservations,” he says, “so we provide solutions around that.”
“I’d been building up this rental business that was using a bunch of software industry infrastructure that I had made,” says Barge, who launched the business in January. “I realized that the commercial space actually has a lot of the same challenges as far as red tape. Like, administrating and onboarding clients.”
Officeable.com helps streamline the process between hosts and clients, getting clients the receive necessary information without bogging down hosts. The service onboards clients by sending them the property address, the WiFi password, check-in, and parking instructions, as well as other information the client might need.
The platform also offers message templates that serve as pre-written responses covering frequently asked questions.
“The overall trends toward flexibility, hybrid work, remote work, and mobile work are huge,” Barge says. “I envision a world where companies, startups, and individuals can find and book workspace easily—just for the time they need it.”
He also sees a world where property managers can increase their earnings by taking advantage of the higher rates of short-term rentals. The software tools make the reservations efficient, he says.
Anyone with available office space can list on Officeable.com for free. Hosts pay 3 percent of rental income to the platform, Barge says. For clients, Officeable.com offers spaces without a membership, subscription, or lease—which provide freedom and flexibility for short-term tenants.
Currently, Officeable.com supports multiple type of listings, including office space, conference rooms, and even podcast studios. Barge, who has a remote team of developers and an operational team locally, is first focused on the Dallas market, with an eye towards future expansion.
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