Coworking spaces are a modern alternative to the conventional lackluster office. According to a recent study, the number of people working in a coworking space in 2017 was 1.18 million. What makes coworking spaces quite impressive from an entrepreneur’s perspective is the fact that they have successfully eliminated the counterproductive and unnecessary restrictions that typically come with a private office. However, the emergence of coworking spaces doesn’t necessarily mean that regular offices are now obsolete. We’ll present you with an overview of the pros and cons of both options to help you make an informed decision and choose the best environment for your business, so let’s get right to it.
Coworking Space Overview
The essence of a coworking space is collaboration. These spaces are created to allow for smooth collaboration between team members because the workspace is usually shared. Furniture and tech equipment are designed to be comfortable and efficient, especially for time-consuming projects; you may even get some coffee on the house.
- Coworking spaces provide you with the luxury to move around as much as you like, whether you’re looking for a colleague or trying to print something quickly.
- You don’t have to spend a lot of effort to start networking with the individuals around you who might share similar interests or work in the same field as you.
- The most important feature of coworking spaces that make them a great choice for startups and entrepreneurs is the low upfront costs. You don’t have to worry about expenses such as utilities, repairs, and furniture upgrades because they are all included in a small fee.
- There is no need for long-term commitments and contracts because you can easily pay month-by-month or as you see fit for your business. Some spaces offer discounts on long-term partnerships as well.
- There is no need to burden yourself with any issues related to office management because coworking spaces come with their own built-in management system.
- Coworking spaces aren’t exactly the cheapest option you have. The expenses you’ll be paying are still higher than those of working-from-home business models because you’ll be renting extra stuff, compared to the average model.
- The possibility of distractions is quite high because a coworking space can get crowded.
- You won’t be able to use your full branding potential because it is not the best place for meeting with important clients.
- Not all equipment or rooms will be available whenever you need them because they are shared.
The traditional office has a pretty recognizable vibe that anyone who has ever worked in a big company is familiar with. Offices are designed with productivity and efficiency in mind, often overlooking convenience and comfort. You’ll get to have meetings in conference rooms any time you want and more control over your manageable assets.
- You’ll get your fair share of privacy when your employees are working in designated permanent spaces, in addition to more manageable schedules and fewer distractions.
- There is room for individual work if you have employees who don’t have to work with a team to get the job done.
- The professional aura of an office is perfect for personal branding and high-profile meetings.
- Unlike coworking spaces, there won’t be a lot of room for networking and collaboration in an office.
- Managing an office can sometimes take away precious time that you can invest in the business itself.
- Leasing an office requires signing a long-term contract, which can sometimes bind a startup to a certain location.
Determining a Winner
There is no direct answer as to whether you should go for a coworking space or a traditional office setup; it all depends on your business needs and budget. It’s hard to go wrong with either option if you know what you’re looking for. The answer depends on the type of business and internal structure that you want to run. The good news is that you can always go for a coworking space first and then see where your business takes you from there. Your ideal environment can change depending on your business needs, so keep a close eye on any operational changes.