Coworking spaces existed before the coronavirus pandemic started. However, it was thought of as a trend that will soon run its course. Now, after the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, it is pretty evident that co-working spaces are here to stay. Moreover, business centers around the world have turned this into an industry. Even competition exists between business centers to create the most attractive coworking spaces.
The impact of COVID-19
In late March 2020, it became evident that working in dedicated office spaces will no longer be feasible. When people were not sure about the severity of the disease, even co-working spaces lost revenue. As more businesses started to inherit the work-from-home policy, the line between home and work became more blurred. More and more companies started to reduce their workforce and people found themselves with no working space. It was seen that not everyone could afford to spend money or space, or both, for a dedicated workspace in their home.
After social distancing was introduced, companies started to change their work model. Business centers started to change the setup of their co-working spaces. They scheduled rosters to ensure the problem of overcrowding does not arise. Big companies started to realize the risk of investing in office spaces. As dedicated office spaces were not generating revenues but still produced expenses. Companies even started selling their office spaces with no one to buy them.
While businesses faced these problems, employees started to face problems of their own. Work-from-home fatigue started to become a real thing. Either people got tired of working or they got tired of being at home all the time. But one thing was certain, that working from home was getting less and less productive every passing day. Some even started to face physical and mental health issues from sitting in front of the screen all the time.
As students were stuck at home as well. Many workers find themselves working while a class is going on in the background. Many have found themselves embarrassed because of things happening in the background while in zoom or google meetings. As every member of the family was spending more and more time at home. It was getting harder to find a dedicated space at home for work.
A solution to all these problems
Even before the pandemic, many people worked from homes such as content creators and freelancers. Sometimes these people have stayed in coffee shops for hours at a time getting their work done. This is because working from home could get monotonous after a while. So, their solution was coffee shops. Some knew about the co-working spaces, which were more uncommon before the pandemic.
As we can see that coworking spaces were always a good choice for remote workers even before the pandemic. Many companies decided to use these coworking spaces as a solution to their problems. The motto was changing from work-from-home to work-from-anywhere. People can work in a coworking space near their homes. They do not need to travel across the whole city to work in a dedicated office. That is why we can see that even as many restrictions are slowly being lifted, companies are still choosing coworking spaces instead of investing in a dedicated office space.
Businesses are realizing the amount of money they can save by not leasing office spaces. Employers and employees alike are opting for coworking spaces. People from a wide variety of business sectors and industries work in these spaces. That enables greater networking and career growth opportunities than one usually gets in a dedicated office space. Future job opportunities and clients are often found in coworking spaces.
However, there are some people who are missing the social aspects that come with a dedicated office. To solve this problem, companies are renting coworking spaces instead of leasing dedicated office spaces. This way, employers are saving money and employees are getting the work-life balance that they desire.
Other advantages of coworking spaces
In a study, it was found that the average American spends 225 hours, or over 9 full calendar days, on the road per year. In other places in the world, like India, where traffic congestion is a problem, the numbers are very staggering. However, the wide acceptance of remote working has brought down those numbers by a respectable margin.
People who cannot afford some expensive techs required for their work will find them in the coworking spaces. For example, people who work on animations and graphics designing will find it difficult to afford the GPU cards required for their work. Coworking spaces designed for these people have all the necessary tech they will require. Some even provide the necessary subscription of services required for this kind of work.
Here are some other benefits briefly discussed:
- Flexible plans
While leasing or buying spaces are long-term investments for multiples years or decades. Coworking spaces can be rented for a year, a day, or even an hour.
- Cost efficiency
Coworking spaces do not come with any maintenance costs. All the extra headaches are covered by the business centers. You can focus all your energy on your work.
If you are a freelancer or an entrepreneur, being part of a supportive community is very important. Coworking spaces are full of people that share your mission and vision.
- Entertainment value
Working for a long period of time at one go is not productive. It is wise to take short breaks between work to catch your breath. Coworking spaces provide fun amenities ranging from coffee and snacks to ping pong tables and dartboards.
Post COVID-19 perspective
Even if the lockdowns and distancing regulations go away, the work-from-anywhere model is likely to stay experts agree. The advantages of remote working outweigh the disadvantages by a big margin. It has come to the point that some people are wondering that why this working model was not put into place before the pandemic. The bottom line is that coworking spaces are here to stay and business centers around the world are in competition to provide the best services.