Five benefits of co-working
Collaborate & Create
Our working culture has changed dramatically in recent years, with home-working and flexible hours gradually becoming the norm. Co-working is also a growing trend in the UK, with a predicted 19,000 hubs attracting 1.7 million members during the course of 2018. And yet based on conversations we’ve had with local businesses, there are still many who are not aware of the term.
Co-working in itself is not a new concept – with the first internet cafes opening in the 1990s – and generally refers to working space used by individuals who are self-employed, or working for different employers, sharing costs, equipment, skills and knowledge.
However, with customer expectations increasing, the co-working space is continually evolving. Just as you might imagine a hospitality suite in a boutique hotel, hot-desking hubs such as The Hive now provide a whole host of networking, social and even dining opportunities for local businesspeople as standard. In our case, we pride ourselves on being able to offer a dedicated on-site customer service team, an Anglo-Greek Deli Bar, regular networking, community and social events, and much more besides.
So let’s take a look at the main benefits of modern-day co-working.
- Take time out from home
Working from home means you are far less accountable for your workload and continual distractions, such as putting a wash on or fixing the toaster, will make you far less productive in the long term. Taking your laptop to the local coffee shop now and again will certainly make a change from the monotony and isolation of home-working. But constantly worrying about the wifi connection, or whether it will be too noisy to make a phone call, or too crowded to meet business contacts, is simply not sustainable. Coworking in a full-service hospitality hub – which provides everything from hyper-fast wifi and refreshments to printing and presentation facilities – solves all of these problems, as well as giving you the professional edge when meeting clients.
- No commitment required
If you’re setting up a new business, or your existing enterprise has outgrown your living room, you’re probably considering renting an office. However, with commercial leases usually requiring a commitment of at least six months, and incurring hefty rental and admin fees, not to mention business rates and utilities, it may not be viable. With most co-working spaces, there are no expensive or long-term contracts, meaning you can choose exactly when work depending on your schedule or financial means at the time.
- Meet new people
One of the attractions of co-working, especially for freelancers, is the chance to network – be it engaging with like-minded businesspeople or establishing relationships with potential customers or suppliers. Either way, interacting with others during the working day is a great way of building self-confidence while preventing loneliness in the workplace.
- Improve effectiveness and mood
Research has shown that coworkers work more effectively as they are stimulated, rather than threatened, by their environment and the people in it. They see their work as ‘meaningful’, as they tend to be working on projects they really care about. And because there is a lack of direct competition, and therefore internal politics, coworkers don’t feel the need to put on a work persona. Instead, they are likely to be happier, have a stronger work identity, and be more willing to help each other out and share their skillsets.
- Access professional services
As co-working becomes more popular, hubs are beginning to offer a range of professional services for users. At The Hive, for example, we work with independent partners to provide on-site training, business advice and even financial assistance in the form of a grant or a loan, all of which could be beneficial if you are a start-up or freelancer.
In an age of flexible working, full-service hospitality hubs provide the perfect modern-day office environment, without the commitment or expense. For more details about co-working opportunities in The Weald, book a taster session, or become a buzz pack business member.