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The concept of Coworking space is booming. It is projected that there will be more than 26,000 coworking spaces globally, hosting over 3.8 million people by 2020. Looking around at all the Coworking spaces and shared office spaces coming up, it is no surprise that this projection might actually be an understatement. Thanks to the gig economy comprising of freelancers, startups and entrepreneurs, as well as the growing preference for remote workflows in the corporate workforce, Coworking spaces and shared office spaces are a global force. But, how do these workspace solutions work and are they a good fit for you and your business? Let’s find out.
What is Coworking / Shared Office Space?
To understand what Coworking is, you first need to know what the concept of Coworking is all about. The concept of Coworking is much more than sharing a physical space. It is founded on an intention to share a common lifestyle and a set of values that are geared towards building trust, collaboration, sustainability and exchange. The overall goal is to provide people with a better workspace and environment over the 9-5 offices.
From ‘what is coworking’, we now move to another popular question; ‘how does Coworking space work?’ To start with, Coworking is a service that allows individuals and businesses to access office and office facilities under pre-determined but flexible arrangements. As such, individuals and businesses who wish to use Coworking spaces are considered members. They pay membership dues annually or monthly for a private office or desk within a common space. For the duration of their subscription, members have exclusive access to the office and accompanying facilities as well as to a network of like-minded professionals with whom they can exchange ideas and collaborate in close proximity.
Who Uses Coworking Spaces / Shared Office Space?
Anyone can use a Coworking space or shared office space. After all, everyone stands to benefit from having access to a community of likeminded individuals. With that said, the cost of renting office space can be extremely high particularly for startups. Additionally, using your local coffee shop or your kitchen table to run your business might not give you the best environment to be successful. It is for these reasons that coworking spaces offer a flexible, drop-in and short term workspace solution that is also affordable. In addition to having a distraction-free workspace space, members of Coworking spaces can also access other office services such as internet connection, mailbox rental, as well as a shared receptionist. There are also conference rooms and meetings rooms available on demand.
Coworking spaces offer their members the unique opportunity to network with fellow entrepreneurs, freelancers, small business owners and other professionals looking for a more conducive work environment.
Advantages of Coworking and Shared Offices
Demand for Coworking and shared offices in Toronto is on the rise. Here are some of the reasons why.
Coworking and shared offices are almost always cheaper than the traditional offices. Buying or leasing a large office comes with many high costs running into thousands of dollars. With Coworking and shared office spaces, monthly membership fees average $100 which is a big advantage.
Responsibilities such as maintenance and cleaning of the shared office space are taken up by the service provider which means you have no extra responsibilities from using the space.
Coworking and shared office spaces accommodate dozens, even hundreds of people from different industries, fields and professions. It is a great place to build your professional network more so because the demographic is always changing.
Most people don’t like the idea of being tied down to long-term leases and rental agreements. Coworking spaces offered flexible arrangements including monthly, daily and even hourly depending on your needs.
SUPPORT FOR STARTUPS
With small budgets, a need for networking and uncertain futures, startups have been the leading cause for the rise in demand for Coworking and shared office spaces.
URBAN CENTRIC LOCATIONS
Coworking and shared office space are typically located in urban centres giving members an opportunity to live in dream locations and explore various markets.
RESISTANCE TO TRADITIONAL OFFICES
More people, including corporate employees, are resisting the idea of being tied to the traditional 9-5 office. Coworking and shared offices offer a great opportunity for self-expression and an effective alternative to traditional offices.
Why Coworking Isn’t Just a “Rented Desk”
One of the biggest misconceptions about Coworking spaces is that they are essentially a rented desk among strangers. In truth, this is far from the truth and here’s why.
Coworking and shared office spaces typically accommodate likeminded people who want to help each other, learn from each other and also teach each other. This makes it a great environment to grow professionally and also as a person.
In addition to networking, members of Coworking and shared office spaces also get a unique platform to access big industry players. This offers them great exposure and opens important avenues such as insurance and funding.
DIVERSITY AND NETWORKING
Coworking and shared office space accommodate people from all walks of life, industries and professions. This allows members to not only interact on a professional level but also on a personal level building both professional and personal ties.
Startups and small businesses in particular face a big challenge in finding the right space to accommodate their growing team due to tight budgets. Coworking and shared office spaces allow these businesses to use and pay only for space they need when they need it. This allows them to run successful teams in close proximity.
First impressions matter – a lot. With the additional office service offered by Coworking and shared offices such as rental mailbox, receptionist and meeting rooms, businesses get an opportunity to make a great impression on clients and the community at large. Having an office rather than working from coffee shops or home gives a business a more professional image to clients and even lending institutions.
Start Coworking Today
Why choose to work from a Coworking space Toronto? Well, because you stand to gain countless benefits from working alongside like-minded individuals with the same energy, drive and enthusiasm as you. At Officescape Markham, we have Coworking space and shared office space arrangements to suit your unique needs. If you are looking for full-time offices that will give you professional development and a deeper sense of freedom to new networking opportunities as well as a feeling community, contact us today.