Is Coworking Only for Freelancers?

Coworking, freelancers
Coworking, freelancers

The coworking sector started off being viewed with a focus on freelancers or single-person businesses. That perspective, however, hasn’t remained static.

The coworking concept has been gaining momentum with startups and larger businesses around the world.

The typical office functionality coupled with the flexibility of a home office has garnered major appeal.

Harvard Business Review signals an evolution of coworking from freelancers and startups to employees of large companies working beyond their organizations.

According to researchers at the University of Michigan, the key features entrepreneurs expect from coworking spaces are interacting with like-minded people, random discoveries and opportunities, and sharing of knowledge and ideas.

Brands as large as Starbucks are looking into coworking spaces since the value add is just can’t be found in the typical 9-5 work setting.

The vibe at a coworking space can be challenging to emulate at traditional corporate office spaces, but that hasn’t deterred Large corporations like SAP and IBM from trying.

These brands have attempted to create their own shared working space, dubbed corps working.

As popular startup culture regularly exhibits, growing businesses are usually at their nascent stage and the air is bursting with growth and productivity.

Everyone works towards a single goal and this inspired atmosphere can often inspire individuals all across. It is this setting that even large organizations would like to rekindle in their workplace.

Corporations seek the collaborative space experience

Coworking spaces are justifiably seen as a hub for freelancers, as they provide a casual environment and the opportunity to network.

European hacker spaces of the 1990s, where programmers would exchange skills and best practices, are what contributed, at least in part, to the coworking spaces we experience today. 

Networking works in many ways – makes it easier for a company in need of some urgent solutions to come across a freelancer in their coworking networks.

Every day is an opportunity to network with inspired entrepreneurs. It’d be accurate to consider a coworking space as a hub of business partners, mentors, potential clients, and ideas.

All these are attributes that appeal to large companies like Suzuki and Philips, and startups as well.

Like data sciences startup Gramener, boasting of recognition in the top 50 emerging products by Nasscom.

In the early stage of a startup, an idea can scale up from a one-person company to a team of 5, to a full-fledged network in no time.

Coworking spaces provide flexible solutions for such requirements and remain a feasible and viable option not only for a growing business but large corporations as well.

Even if the business employs freelancers temporarily, the accommodating nature of the shared space makes it a cost-efficient option when the employment is limited for a certain project. 

Breaking Through The 9-5 Cubicles

The predominantly millennial workforce organizations work with today, assign a higher value to the vibe, setting, and overall feel of their workplaces.

This workforce, by and large, prefers a contemporary setting that exhibits flexibility and positivity.

Big corporations are beginning to listen. Multiple studies have uncovered how the happiness quotient among workers boosts creativity and its potential link to productivity.

Coworking spaces are generally identified with their conducive atmosphere.

A characteristic feature is the recreation area and the regular hosting of events and workshops.

The goal is to help recharge and de-stress individuals during the workday and promote a healthy balance of work and play.

Apart from the fun, the sole concentration lies on the product

A coworking space like amenities like meeting rooms, office equipment, furniture, pantry, and is inclusive of all the necessary expenses that come with running an office space.

Whether it’s mail handling, or the presence of a receptionist and secretarial support, coworking spaces seek to manage all administrative tasks as well.

This not only takes care of overhead costs but also saves significant time and energy on the customers in selecting and acquiring an office space, and its maintenance, which can be used for building the business instead.

Picking the right brand for a coworking space certainly helps.

Growing businesses get pan-Indian access to different locations and can also hire top talent from different locations to work from the coworking space network.

As they say, real estate is all about location, location, and location. A prime location provides ease of access, and while it may come at a great cost, this is easily avoided with coworking spaces where rent and all overheads are taken care of.

Banking giant HSBC moved 300 staff into coworking hot desks at a prime location in Hong Kong which saved them HK$23,000 per person annually.

It is currently using flexible workspaces in the UK, North America, and Asia.

Will the Future Of Coworking Host All Formal Corporations?

The key to ideal usage of space is management.

While freelancers and one-person companies are driven by their own goals, a strong hierarchical management team would do the trick for big corporations with many employees.

Co-location of teams in adjoining spaces can help in better management leading to productivity. 

It is crucial to empower the workers to use the space as their own, which would add to the inspired atmosphere that companies want their employees to feel towards the work, something similar to what freelancers feel, found at large in coworking spaces.


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