A coworking space needs to represent your brand well from choosing the right location to finding an environment that just fits. But with an abundance of choices, how do you start searching for the right place and how do you know your team will love it?
We break down the key considerations that will help find a coworking space to suit your business and what questions you need to ask yourself before diving in.
What are the advantages of coworking spaces?
Coworking spaces have a huge range of advantages. For freelancers or entrepreneurs, a coworking space is a cost-effective space with no commitment. They’re designed specifically for business, fully furnished and complete with utilities, furniture and internet making it a super convenient option.
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They provide a collaborative environment ideal for expanding your network, finding new clients and simply a space to meet other like-minded professionals. For some host-specific member events, however, a shared kitchen or terrace makes an equally great opportunity to connect with new people.
One of the main advantages of a coworking space is the flexibility they provide for freelancers who are looking for hot-desking opportunities or startups who are in the middle of an expansion. Coworking spaces are a scalable solution allowing you to grow as your business does. With a range of hot desks, meeting rooms or office space, you can find what you’re looking for.
How to find coworking space that’s right for your business
There are many factors that you’ll need to consider when trying to find a coworking space for your business. It’s a smart choice to brainstorm before you start searching so you can make the most efficient use of your time and narrow down exactly what you’re looking for.
Location, location, location. It’s the first thing anyone considers when it comes to their place of work. As advantageous as it is to have the flexibility to pick something that cuts your commute in half, it’s important to think about what reputation your chosen location has for certain industries. For example, a city like Bristol is well known for its contribution to arts and sciences, so anyone in those sectors would find this a beneficial location to associate themselves with, however, a city like London has such a diverse range of industries, you’d have to deep dive into each area to find the best area for you. Also, consider your client base and if they often travel to you, what might be convenient for them.
Coworking spaces are incredibly affordable in comparison to a regular full-time office space. This makes it great for startups who might be looking to scale up in the near future or freelancers who are on a tight budget. Setting a budget early on can help determine where to look and what size to go for.
One of the best things about coworking spaces is that they come fully serviced so you don’t have to worry about furnishing the space (but you do have autonomy over how you would like to design it!).. Many coworking spaces even have extra amenities from onsite kitchens, coffee shops and cafes as well as designated break rooms. If you’re really lucky, you might find one with a rooftop terrace – morning meetings followed by a coffee in the sun? Yes, please.
All coworking spaces are already set up with internet, printers and scanners ready for you to be productive from the moment you walk in. Ask yourself if there’s anything you require from the building, such as A/C or showers onsite in advance so you can filter through your search better.
If you’re worried about tech or IT issues you might stumble across, search for coworking spaces that provide that extra level of admin and tech support. This will help put your mind at ease when getting ready for hosting meetings or getting your laptop set up for videoconferencing. Many locations have a receptionist to help with basic admin and provide a warm welcome to you and your visitors.
Size and budget tend to go hand in hand. Obviously, the bigger your budget, the more scope you have to secure a bigger space. Consider the number of staff you have, whether you’ll all be in the space on the same day, whether you need access to meeting rooms and so on. Sizing varies from a simple hot desk to square footage of private offices, so determine your needs before you search.
Think about how you, your team and potential clients would travel to your coworking space. Figure out what train or tube stations are close by, whether it has a car park or if you’re a cyclist, look for bike storage onsite.
Often, businesses turn to coworking spaces because the flexibility that they offer is so valuable. One day you might be in need of a single hot desk and the next you could be hosting a team in a meeting room – being able to have that flexibility is key for a lot of professionals. Contracts start with daily hire up to monthly contracts, with the ability to switch locations when required or upscale when you need it.
Once you’ve established the gritty details, the final thing to consider is how the coworking space feels. Is it the laid-back vibe you’re looking for? Does the environment sit well with your brand? Does it encourage productivity and inspire creativity? It’s always best to head down to the coworking space and get a real feeling of the place. This is a space that represents your business after all.
You should now feel well-equipped to begin your search for a coworking space that will dazzle your clients and provide you and your team with a productive, professional space to conduct business. It’s so important to find a coworking space that promotes the energy for your brand; whether you’re a digital creative or a finance expert, there’s a space to suit everyone.