Cowork Tools: It’s the start of something big
These organisations, which are deeply committed to delivering enterprise-level solutions with the heart of small business, have launched cowork.tools, a platform on which we will bring to community coworking the resources they need to support their coworkers in creating the future.
So what do a nonprofit representing coworking spaces in Europe, a pair young of fintech companies, and a developer of remote verification solutions have in common and why would they join together to create compliance tools?
All four of us are dedicated to independent small and medium size businesses who need enterprise level tools to bring their own approach to doing business without running afoul of the regulatory environment.
The intention of the regulations is right: it is intended to give control to individuals over their personal data, to provide a gatekeeper as protection from bad actors, and to simplify the work of international trade.
But…this is the regulatory authority’s idea of simplifying the regulatory environment. A well-funded company unaffected by the current crisis which has hot and cold running lawyers and compliance officers and consultants on tap, as well as the budget to pay them, may find that this works.
But the coworking businesses and coworkers we know and love do not have any of those things.
The First Cowork Tools
The first tools are of two types: compliance tools which automate the process of GDPR compliance, AML/KYC compliance, and payment tools which solve the problems of online identification, payments and control of the process for online and cross border deals.
All the cowork.tools get driven by our shared vision for the future of the business, which is a high tech/high touch.
Automation of repetitive and complex processes is vital for the resilience of the business.
But over automation can create new problems: when an option is needed or wanted that the developer did not think of we reach a dead-end and no solution is possible — until you can speak to a human.
High touch service, with real human contact at vital points along the way and a dedicated, qualified and experienced compliance officer to lead the way out of the regulatory muddle for businesses which don’t fit the standard mould envisioned by regulators when they laid down the rules.
The GDPR compliance tool automates the generation of documents and policies and the updating of them as regulations change.
It ensures GDPR compliance for your website and public-facing online presence, your employees and contractors, and your vendors within and without the EU, as well as breach procedures and reporting requirements.
Block Money Laundering, Online Fraud, and Terrorism Financing
For the AML/KYC tool, we are pleased and proud to have been joined by SumSub, dedicated to providing gold standard support to compliance and anti-fraud teams who fight money laundering, terrorist financing and online fraud while keeping in mind that the customer relationship and experience is at the heart of every single thing a business does.
The design of our payment tool brings transparency, reliability, speed, and worldwide service in mind.
Based on the smart contract, it enables small and microbusinesses to transact with people all over the world quickly and safely without the need to bring in a small army of professionals or deal with a boatload of paperwork.
“We in coworking have to comply with the same rules that the banks do when it comes to identity verification and anti-fraud rules, and the GDPR rules apply across the board,” says
Jeannine van der Linden of the European Coworking Assembly, “but the coworking spaces I know about don’t have the same resources the banks do. Most of the things we have to do by hand can be automated, but no one was doing it in a way that was accessible to small businesses and freelancers. So I turned to Alex, who can automate anything”.
We also think coworking, freelancing, and microbusiness will play an increasingly important role in the future economy.“
Alex continues, “I feel comfortable to say that this solution will change the approach to some of the essential things in the financial market – personal data and security of coworking spaces.
Knowing and being involved in these markets for years, we see that the rapid change in industry and automation tools such as one we developed together with the Assembly can accelerate this trend like nothing before.
Safe and automated environment accessible at the management level of coworking spaces, will also dramatically help the end customers – coworking space users.”
The Human side
Vital to the project is the human side, which is the most critical part of small business.
Bernie Mitchell, who handles communications for cowork.tools, reflects that “In the last decade, digital innovation created a distance between people, the unique edge small and micro businesses have now is maintaining a genuine connection.
We need to work harder and smarter than ever to give our members and clients a connected and relatable experience.
Using technology in a coworking space to be more efficient, frees up your time to build lasting in-person relationships with fellow humans.”
More Cowork Tools to come
More cowork tools are coming, as this collaboration group is working together on many levels, intending to deliver more possibilities and more exceptional service to our shared communities of alliance and ecosystem professionals.
The European Coworking Assembly is a nonprofit organisation based in Oosterhout, the Netherlands, which supports independent, local coworking right across the Continent.
Velvet is the international cross border escrow platform, which uses blockchain technology to drive and secure a fully secure timestamping ledger.
Exodus is an international fintech advisory firm, mainly focussed in AML/GDPR compliance, as well as supporting fintech companies with their day-to-day operations.
Sum&Substance (SumSub) is an all-in-one technical and legal toolkit to cover KYC/KYB/AML needs. It is a single powerful platform to convert more customers, speed up verification, reduce costs, and digital fraud.
Together we cover the waterfront of high tech/high touch: technology with the human element.
Bernie J Mitchell
Telephone: +44 7772 042012
Jeannine van der Linden
Telephone/WhatsApp: +31 6 112 176 24