Coworking spaces are a mix of shared office space, business centre. They offer an alternative to the restrictive rents and leases of traditional office spaces and commercial real estate and come with a range of benefits beyond flexible terms, such as community events and plug & play set up and great amenities Unlike a traditional office, co-working spaces consist of members who can work for a range of different companies, from small start-ups to large multinational corporations. The result is an atmosphere that’s relaxed yet professional, collaborative and creative, with a real sense of community at its core. The modern working world is different. It’s mobile and flexible. Freelancers, start-ups and larger businesses alike need professional working spaces that accommodate the way we work today. You might need office facilities for a few months, or just one day a month, and coworking spaces offer that kind of freedom, without skimping on location or amenities.
There are lots of co-working options out there, all with their very own unique vibe and environment. If you are considering moving into a coworking space it's a good idea to visit several to get a feel for the space. Some spaces are perfect for creatives, some more focused on tech and others are great for all. In general, in terms of the actual space you will be working from, you have three main options to choose from.
Access to an open spot in the common area. Bring your laptop, pick a desk, and get to work. You can choose a new spot every time you come in. Hot-desking is a popular option for workers that don't need a stationary computer and like versatility. If you only need desk or studio space every now and then, a hot desk is a great option. This is generally the cheapest and most flexible option.
For more permanent space, you can rent a fixed desk or an amount of fixed desks for you and your team. This means you can leave your equipment at work over night and personalize the desk as you wish. You can get a fixed desk for yourself or for a bigger team - ideal if your business is growing as it's easy to simply rent more desks in the same space.
You and your team can set yourselves up with your own private office within the larger shared building. This gives you more peace and privacy as well as the ability to personalize the office to your needs. As you're still in a coworking space you and your staff will benefit from all the networking events, break out spaces and general atmosphere the space has to offer. Renting a private office is normally the most expensive option of the three, but it still allows you to not be ties to a traditional long term lease. You normally only have to give a month's notice (rather than having to sign up for years.)
A coworking space gives you the power to move out of your garage, coffee shop or outdated office and into a more professional and modern environment. It provides a dedicated office space for you to go to while you ready your company for launch and beyond. Having a space to see clients, confer with staff and make use of office facilities can be the professional push your business needs to get up off the ground and grow.
Coworking spaces offer up much more than just a desk space. Your monthly rent usually includes access to a kitchen, dining areas, WiFi and furniture. It can also include access to meeting and conference rooms integrated with the latest AV equipment, event spaces, classroom and workshop space, outdoor terraces, bike storage and 24-hour access.
Working alone at home can be isolating and, unproductive. Coworking spaces give freelancers flexible access to a more professional working environment, where and when they want it. It’s a way to get away from the distractions of home, create a valuable separation between your work space and your living space, improve your productivity and offer better networking opportunities.
You’ll be sharing an office with a mixture of larger SMEs, start-ups, creative teams and freelancers too. It gives you an opportunity to reach out and meet people you might not otherwise cross paths with, and the ability to create partnerships with other companies working there. Whether it’s sparking new ideas, sharing your business services, or just having a nice chat and a giggle over a cup of coffee, collaboration and camaraderie are big draws for people who choose the co-working route.
Nowadays office workers can be mobile and on-the-go entrepreneurs and freelancers don’t know what tomorrow holds. Coworking offers the ability to increase your office demands without wasting space and money by leasing an inefficient office. With coworking spaces you can choose to rent a space for a year, a month, or just a day or two and grow when needed.
Coworking means you’re all sharing the cost, so you can benefit from economies of scale, even if it’s just little old you that turns up to the office. Shared workspace rents tend to be far cheaper than renting a traditional office, if you account for hidden costs and flexibility. WiFi, heating, air con, business rates, cleaning, insurance - it’s all included in your rent, which makes it easy to budget for your business too.
Heart of the city, close to a tube stop, out in the suburbs? If you’re going to meet clients at the space, remember that you want it to be an easy place for them to get to.
Hot desk, fixed desk or private office. This will depend on how many people are in your team, how often you need desk space per month, how much privacy you need and the kind of work that you do.
Some spaces are run with a real community vibe, where part and parcel of being a member of the co-working space means you have to devote some of your time to helping run the space itself. Other spaces are totally non-committal - you just pay your rent, show up, use the facilities and that’s it.