Prioritizing business expansion is a key part of owning a business. But utilizing a coworking space can surely help with that! Read more details below.
Coworking spaces have time and time again proven themselves as the ideal solution for both established enterprises and startup businesses looking for a turnkey alternative to a normal office space.
Coworking spaces set themselves apart significantly through much shorter term leases and lower monthly costs, a complete office set up with all the amenities and features needed to get started on day one without hefty investments in office infrastructure and equipment, and access to invaluable networking opportunities and collaborative experiences that are invaluable to young companies and entrepreneurs looking to forge partnerships, develop new products, or expand in different markets.
If you have never considered using a coworking space for your business, here are six simple ways coworking can help business expansion and scale realistically, and across vast distances.
1. As An Office Alternative
The first and most obvious way coworking can help a business expand is by drastically cutting the costs of maintaining an office, allowing more working capital to flow towards product development, marketing, and sales. In other words, less money spent on an annual lease and hefty down payment means more money to spend elsewhere, from new hires to better dev tools or the acquisition of new clients.
Aside from lower costs, coworking spaces demand a much lower commitment, as most are designed to work around flexible monthly leases rather than long-term commercial real estate leases, and coworking spaces live and thrive on the quality of their amenities and the local reputation of their administrators, meaning the work of setting up a brand-new office is done for you.
There are obvious challenges to a coworking space that a young company might not have in an office of their own. For one, there is the fact that you cannot dictate how a coworking space embraces its design philosophy and overall work culture, and you typically cannot impose too much of your company’s own culture without alienating other tenants, and potentially getting into trouble with management. To that effect, it’d be hard to announce an office party without first clearing it with the coworking company’s management staff, neither could you swap out art or change furniture (aside from making certain requests).
Outside of what you cannot control, there are also risks associated with coworking spaces that some businesses might not want to take. While coworking spaces generally have to guarantee a safe environment, both in terms of professional atmosphere and data security, some companies specializing in sensitive information might not feel comfortable accessing and working on it through the coworking space’s network.
That being said, most security concerns aren’t in the offices of companies working on their data through the cloud, but in the data centers that actually host the information. Furthermore, coworking spaces today recognize that their clients might be highly interested in ensuring that any information they process while at work can’t be snatched by a third party.
If your coworking space is your only or primary office, you might be able to enjoy the same freedoms you would if you had a space of your own, instead. But any company with a space of its own eventually needs more space.
2. As A Satellite Office
Where coworking spaces truly excel for larger companies and multinational enterprises is as an ideal way to set up satellite offices with minimal costs. Satellite offices are secondary and tertiary workplaces set up by larger companies that need a physical presence in another city, region, or country.
For example, your company might have headquarters in New York, but you’d still like an office on the West Coast, as well as offices in Europe for your emerging European clients, or because of the European launch of your product. Coworking spaces enable you to get a satellite office up and running in just a few days while ensuring that your team will have access to absolutely everything they need to work at full capacity.
3. As A Team Location
Sometimes, you don’t need an additional office because you want to capitalize on the location and the chance of meeting clients face-to-face through your company’s own representatives, but you need an additional office because a large portion of your development team is working from home in the same city or region, and you feel they might work more effectively and efficiently if they had a workspace they could physically collaborate in.
This might be in another state, or all the way across the planet’s surface, in Singapore or Johannesburg. Coworking spaces allow you to help a local team get set up right away.
4. As An Onboarding Facility
Even if your business operates largely remotely, whether due to ongoing or voluntary COVID restrictions, or because you have decided to embrace a remote or hybrid model, nothing beats a face-to-face onboarding process.
When onboarding a new hire, doing so physically allows you to introduce them to members of the team in-person, while giving them a feel for the company culture they’re joining, and giving them the opportunity to be much more direct and communicative during the first few days spent working together.
Hires onboarded strictly via screensharing, and video calling might have trouble asserting themselves when they’re confused or have a problem with a certain task or step, and they may feel left out or distant from the company without any real face-to-face interaction.
5. As A Virtual Office
Virtual offices are real addresses that serve as corporate headquarters, but rarely or never serve as an actual office for work. They may include a skeleton crew tasked with receiving and relaying packages, correspondence, and communication, or to serve as a location to occasionally receive clients. Virtual offices are not PO boxes – these are real offices, usually shared by multiple companies, with a reception and meeting rooms.
Sound familiar? Coworking spaces serve as excellent virtual offices, allowing you to maintain a small space of your own while most of your team works from home, or any location of your choosing. By choosing a coworking space in a high-end business park or commercial sector of the city, you help your business exude class without paying the same exorbitant rental fees expected of a company with that address.
6. As A Meeting Hall
Coworking spaces are also an excellent way for remote teams to organize a meetup and talk about business without having to do so at a coffee shop, or out in a park in the middle of winter.
Some coworking spaces allow you to specifically lease meeting rooms and utilize these to conduct conferences, or to meet with clients, plan projects, troubleshoot major issues that aren’t easily resolved while remote, and more.
Ultimately, there is no end to the possibilities of what you can leverage a coworking space for. We’ve made little to no mention of the benefits of working alongside other companies and professionals in a coworking space, or of the fact that coworking spaces tend to foster productivity, innovation, and help employees feel happier and more upbeat than traditional office spaces.