5 Reasons COVID-19 Makes Coworking Spaces Even More Important
In just a few short months, the way we live and work has changed, perhaps forever. Companies are re-evaluating their need for permanent office space and the advantages of coworking spaces are becoming clearer to the general public.
Although the rapid change caught most businesses off guard, many are using this as an opportunity to pivot towards a more flexible work style, making coworking spaces even more important.
In March 2020, Coworker published a survey called How Coworking Spaces are Navigating COVID-19. While the survey results report the pandemic as being “highly disruptive” to coworking spaces all over the world, the survey also noted some positive changes as a result of the crisis.
“By reassessing their services and creating new solutions, many spaces have adopted alternative business models in an effort to not only stop the spread of the virus, but also to support their community’s current needs.”
In the midst of a global pandemic, providing people with a safe work environment is paramount. Many coworking spaces are taking extra steps to stop the spread of COVID-19 through frequent sanitation of high touchpoints, making hand sanitizer available throughout the space, posting educational signs and limiting space access to ensure safe social distancing.
The survey also reports many first-time remote workers in support of trying coworking, which reflects the more flexible office environment many employees are expecting post-pandemic.
While COVID-19 has proved challenging for all operators, forcing business owners to find creative solutions to protect the health and well-being of their employees and customers, there is still a deep need for connection and collaboration.
Here are five important benefits of coworking spaces.
Working remote doesn’t have to mean working alone
With so many businesses turning to remote work for the foreseeable future, people will be looking for new ways to interact with others. Coworking spaces are in an ideal position to become a mainstream beacon of inspiration and a creative solution to working from home but not being alone.
Coworking boosts creativity
There’s something about being around other people, which allows us to be more creative. Perhaps it’s why we hear about so many writers and entrepreneurs choosing cafes and libraries as their workspace.
Many people appreciate the flexibility remote work affords but also crave the inspiration that comes from working around other people. Simply being around others seems to give us a sense of closeness and a boost of creativity for our solo work.
You become part of a community
One of the biggest advantages of coworking spaces is the opportunity it provides for networking. While most people are often independent contractors, working on their own projects, coworking spaces can be great connection points for likeminded businesses and individuals to meet and collaborate.
On top of coworking boosting creativity, working alongside other inspiring people exposes you to new perspectives and ways of doing business. What may begin as a casual conversation could lead to a new opportunity or idea, which takes your work in an entirely new direction.
Shared office resources in a professional environment
While remote work seems straightforward on the surface, there are hidden and extra costs when running a business. Maintaining a professional presence means having a strong Internet connection and appropriate meeting space. And for many, choosing the right ergonomic office chair and having convenient outdoor areas for relaxing are also important for maintaining good health.
Coworking spaces allow workers to enjoy cost-efficiency, since general office equipment and supplies are built into the fee and you can also often benefit from perks such as coffee and snacks as well as gym facilities, business services and other features.
They allow you to keep work separate from home
Despite our best efforts at communicating to family members when we have an important video conference or meeting, working from home has its drawbacks. Using a coworking space puts physical separation between work and home, allowing you to have focused work time, as well as keep regular work hours to avoid having work spill over into family time.
Even with companies offering work-form-home perks like office equipment and software subscriptions, it’s still difficult to maintain healthy work-life boundaries when your office is so readily accessible. Many remote workers find coworking spaces a helpful way of adding some distance between work and home.