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Coworking spaces. What are they and do you need to be heading to one for a more productive day’s work?

By LLM Reporters  |  August 24, 2020

Coworking spaces have risen in popularity in recent years for those seeking out a dedicated working area alongside like-minded professionals.

Much like the creatives who take up a table in a coffee shop, a coworking space offers you the opportunity to take your work away from home to hopefully inspire you and help you focus into putting in a decent day’s work, but a specific working space should be much more productive than a coffee shop.

Ideal for gathering a group of you to work on a project together or as a professional space just for you, a dedicated coworking space provides an environment in which to hone your skills, get your creative juices flowing, network with other innovators and make you a more efficient worker.

Perhaps your once-zen sanctuary at home has been invaded by family members joining you in working from home, or the summer holidays have welcomed the whole pack into your productive space and you’re searching for a more office-like hub to get your professional hat on once again to save you being interrupted with non-work related queries. Maybe you live alone and working by yourself at home doesn’t offer the buzz of a working environment to make you productive enough. Or perhaps your business is growing from your current site and you and your team need a larger area to work from. Whatever the need, we take a look at what it is you should be searching for when finding the right coworking space for you.

Coworking spaces have risen in popularity in recent years for those seeking out a dedicated working area alongside like-minded professionals

Consider security

First and foremost, you need to know that your office space is going to be secure, especially if you are to leave expensive equipment there or if you are working late into the night. Look for a place that offers access control for coworking spaces meaning you can gain entry via advanced technology rather than traditional keys, which are easily manipulated.

Smarter systems will enable you to gain access via an app on your phone rather than you having to carry around a set of keys or keycard, which can be easily misplaced and, depending on the type of membership or other have, you know that the area will kept safe for all who work there with access to rooms you are signed up to.

Find a way of working that suits you

As touched upon above, there will be a variety of reasons that you’ll be looking for a coworking space, so finding the right membership and location is important. Consider whether you need a desk from 9 to 5 or whether you will need access to all areas, including conference rooms at all hours of the day. Think about whether you need a short, medium or full term contract and set a limit on what you or your company can afford to spend, and consider the location – you really don’t want to be adding too much to your day with a long commute.

Whether you’re a freelancer who struggles to work from home or the owner of an SME looking for an alternative to the corporate office environment, shared workspaces can offer a great solution

Think about what amenities you will require

Designed with a range of careers in mind, a decent co-working space should offer a kitchenette, conference room, high-speed Internet access and office equipment as a basic, but think about what other amenities you would like from your space. Would you like to head to the gym during your lunch break or network within a spacious lounge area when your desk is too stifling? Perhaps you would like to take part in yoga classes or would need a space that offers 3D printing or a range of snacks and drinks to keep you topped up. Whatever additions you need to make your day go smoothly; make sure the space you seek can accommodate you.

How does this work with Covid-19?

You may be wary of government guidelines and unsure if you can even sign up for a coworking space at this time. Many places will suspend day passes if they have them so you can be sure that there is a limited flow of people in your shared office, so look out for this when signing up. Also, with guidelines changing regularly and the need for a professional environment away from the distractions of homeworking, but with many offices not fully opening up yet, the demand could be higher than ever, so get in quick.