Coworking continues to challenge traditional conceptions on how we choose to spend our working lives. As the labour market has continued to evolve, both employers and employees have begun to embrace alternative approaches to productive working.
But for those who are more familiar with private office space, the concept of coworking may seem a little confusing or unusual. So if you’re wondering exactly what it is and whether you should try it, here is your answer…
What Does Coworking Entail?
As the name suggests, coworking involves professionals from different organisations and disciplines working together under a single roof. Traditionally, office spaces have often been separated on the basis of the specific organisation they’re servicing. Although different office locations may house different departments or operations, every employee would usually be working in pursuit of a common, company-wide goal.
Coworking spaces represent a dramatic challenge to this way of thinking. Instead, a coworking space may be home to company employees, freelancers, entrepreneurs or any other type of professional. Adding to that, the many attractions of the coworking concept have meant that major multinationals such as Microsoft and HSBC have already begun to venture into coworking for themselves.
What Are the Advantages of Coworking Offices?
So what exactly is driving this new approach to office space? The shared use of office space brings along significant advantages for those looking to adapt their work approach. These include:
Flexibility & Cost-Efficiency
Flexibility and cost-efficiency are crucial factors behind the growing popularity of coworking spaces. This is largely because traditional offices offer relatively little as far as flexibility is concerned. From bank-breaking deposits to daunting long-term leases, the commitment involved with many traditional office spaces is enough to drive away businesses looking for a flexible home.
Most coworking spaces attempt to steer well clear of the aspects mentioned above. Instead, they offer businesses an opportunity to set up shop on their own terms, allowing them to make use of the office space in a way that suits them. The flexible lease terms offered by shared office spaces means that long-term financial commitments are becoming a thing of the past, representing good news for organisations in search of cost-efficiency.
Productivity is the guiding principle of any successful organisation. In the fast-paced commercial environment of today, many businesses are looking to drive productivity in innovative ways. Making the move to a coworking space is one of the most popular methods of doing so
Research by Deskwanted suggests that coworking environments may increase productivity by as much as 74%. Strengthened social interactions, increased diversity and a flexible working culture are some of the most commonly cited reasons for this, and coworking spaces provide an ideal environment for achieving success in each of these areas.
Networking continues to be important in cutting through the bureaucracy and making valuable business connections. By bringing together such a diverse range of professionals in a single space, it’s no surprise that shared workspaces have become fertile ground for networking opportunities to emerge.
The vast potential for collaboration is one of the most significant benefits associated with shared office spaces. The unique nature of coworking means that inspirational professionals and fresh ideas are never far away, paving the way for all manner of successful collaborations.
Workplace diversity is crucial in shaping a welcoming and productive work environment, and coworking offices are the ideal match for businesses looking to enjoy the benefits of a diverse workforce.
Through bringing together professionals of all shapes and sizes, diversity is inherent to the coworking concept. For this reason, shared office spaces can function as a hub for different perspectives, improved employee retention and a higher degree of innovation.
As our approach to productive working has continued to change over time, so too has the importance of a healthy work-life balance come more sharply into focus.
There is little doubt that productivity and well-being should go hand in hand wherever possible, and the environment in which we work can play a crucial role in determining both the former and the latter.
There are several reasons why shared working spaces can help improve the wellbeing of employees. By offering employees increased flexibility in structuring their workload – for example by providing flexible working hours – employees are given more freedom on how to achieve the results expected of them.
Whether it be in the form of on-site fitness facilities or imaginative breakout areas, the range of amenities offered by many shared offices can also help to improve employee well-being. Through providing employees with ample opportunities for both work and play, employers can help increase workplace happiness as well as commercial performance.
What Are the Costs?
Much like every other type of office space, the costs associated with coworking spaces vary depending on your requirements and preferred location. Generally, space in city-center locations will come with a higher price tag than those in small towns but facilities and amenities will also affect the work desk rate.
Whilst there are thousands of amazing coworking offices in cities around the world, London is one of the fastest growing markets for flexible office space. With hundreds of amazing spaces available, the city is supporting the growing demand for a more flexible office environment and they are not always as expensive as you think…
Average Desk rates in key London districts include:
- Shoreditch – £650
- London Bridge – £600
- Kings Cross – £750
- Chelsea / Fulham – £500
- Mayfair – £1000
- Piccadilly Circus – £800
- Canary Wharf – £600
- St James’s – £1000
- Brixton – £450
- Camden – £550
Whilst there is a wide range of office space available, we have picked out some of the best coworking spaces in London to show you what both the city and coworking offices have to offer:
Ingestre Place – Soho | W1F
Bringing different businesses together, this exciting hub of both private offices and coworking spaces is located in the heart of the city’s original creative district. By choosing to work in this modern and collaborative environment, you can benefit from a number of amazing facilities including a streetside terrace, meditation rooms and a weekly well-being programme.
£850 per person / per month
Ramillies- Soho | W1F
As one of the latest coworking developments in the area, this modern workspace will soon have desks to rent in the heart of the West End. With great transport links, modern furnishings and a wide range of facilities, this is the environment for small businesses looking for a fun coworking space.
From £799 per person / per month
Fairchild Place – Shoreditch| EC2A
A fine example of all that a coworking space can offer, The Stage in Shoreditch is the ideal business center for start-ups, freelancers and small teams. Beyond the facilities such as conference rooms, cosy breakout spaces and great transport links, you can enjoy access to the onsite showers and relaxing outdoor space.
Is Coworking Right For You?
The degree to which coworking is right for you will often depend on the requirements of your specific role or organisation. Having said that, it’s clear that coworking spaces are the workplace of choice for professionals from all walks of life, and their popularity continues to grow with each passing day.
With popular alternatives like serviced office spaces simultaneously gaining traction, transforming your office environment is now easier than ever before.
Start Your Search for the Perfect Coworking Space
If you’re looking for a coworking space to call home, get in touch with our expert team today. With a diverse range of coworking spaces available both within the UK and abroad, we can help you find your ideal office.