Thank you Joe McCord for your original blog.
How to Start & Create Coworking Space That People Love
Digital nomads are increasing at unprecedented rates. In America alone, at least three out of 10 people are independent contractors or freelancers. The number is growing exponentially. More and more people are shunning the traditional working environment. They don't want to work at home either.
Some of them want to work while touring the world. Others want to work anytime. Coworking spaces have come to their rescue as they are meant to cater to the needs of independent consultants, freelancers and other workers who combine work with pleasure.
Coworking and small office space for rent are popular, but only a few of them pack the necessary things that will entice residents. Property developers are noticing the shortage, but the rate at which they are adapting to the rising need is still below par. Research shows that there is an opportunity for a discerning developer.
Start coworking space if you understand the trends. Not just individuals who want a private area and office, teams are increasingly adopting the communal culture. People working in emerging sectors such as tech startups are adopting this global phenomenon.
If you are looking to get into this area, this is how to start a coworking space.
Work on the design to ensure public and private spaces
Coworking does not mean public spaces only. Some people want some private moments to hold meetings or even make a sensitive video call or practice a sales pitch. You will need to cater to the needs of the residents.
Also, try unique designs, preferably those that reflect the community and her heritage. Freelancers want something different from an office setting; bring the adventure into your premises. Ensure there is proper lighting. A variety of sitting arrangement that combines multifamily and individual sitting spaces can enhance overall usability.
Locate your space in a serene, yet accessible location
The location has to be near public amenities such as train stations and other public transportation routes. A convenience store nearby can also be good for people who want supplies. The place should be quiet. It shouldn't be a buzz of all kinds of noises. Avoid high traffic areas, airports, and other noisy places.
Can people access your facility easily? That question must be answered affirmatively. People care about their safety. A place off the grid may lack necessary security features; it may not be a good place to start coworking space.
The number of residents you want to host should correspond to the internet bandwidth. Calculate the average data usage per person before you lay down the hardware. Internet connectivity is one of the major challenges facing coworking spaces globally. If you can provide the correct bandwidth and latency of Wi-Fi to your residents, you will stand out in the market. You should consider a backup plan in case the internet goes down.
Ensure a healthy ecosystem
This starts with the design of the space. Access to amenities such as kitchen, washrooms, stairs, etc. should be perfect. A coworking space should be like a convenience store where the customer can conveniently access things. Ensure a clean environment. The place should have an internal culture of how people relate. A kitchenette can also be a valuable addition.
An ever-present support person
Employ enough professionals who can answer all technical and administrative questions. If someone wants to connect to a wireless printer, you should be able to provide that. If someone wants to book a meeting room, there should be someone to handle that. Enterprise and customer relationships should be excellent.
Keep the cost modest
At least half of the coworking people will look at your cost structure before they sign with you. The occupancy rate is critical in any residential property. You want to ensure your residence rates stay above 90%. That will be good for your overall business functionality. If you make your service pricey, the chances are that your occupancy level will below.
If you want to learn how to start a coworking space, rely on global trends and research. Focus on solving some of the challenges facing this fantastic innovation.
Joe McCord works at REAA.