Should You Use a Shared Office or Coworking Space for Your Business Startup?

Coworking Space - Shared Office

Many offices in recent years have switched over to an open floor plan to allow for greater flexibility and movement among their staff. An offshoot of these changes has been the rise of shared office spaces. Shared office spaces are often set up by a 3rd party that rents individual desks or a space to work, these setups are referred to as fixed desks and hot desks, respectfully.

A startup can benefit from shared office spaces for many reasons including, cost-effectiveness, professionalism, and networking. However, there can be several downsides when using shared office spaces, just like having a normal office.

System: Fixed Desk vs. Hot Desk

Each of these systems, fixed or hot desk, aims to solve a specific issue facing shared workspaces. That issue is where do the people who are using the space actually work. It could be set up like a conference room and everyone would work around a big central table, but then no one would have any privacy.

A fixed desk plan solves this issue by renting a specific desk to a specific individual or business. It is similar to assigned desks in school. This ensures that when an individual shows up to use the office that they are renting they will have a space or desk and know exactly where it is located. A hot desk solution employs a first-come, first-serve mentality. You can use any desk that is currently available. This can benefit individuals who work nonstandard hours because there is a smaller chance of the best desks being occupied.

Pros of a Shared Office

  • Affordable for startups
    • Most are pay per head or desk
    • No need to rent an entire office space
  • Provides a professional business address
    • Avoids using your home as a mailing address
  • Ample networking opportunities
    • Surrounded by like-minded individuals
    • Can receive inspiration from fellow renters
  • Access to a meeting or conference room
    • Able to take a client directly to the meeting room

Cons of a Shared Office

  • Lack of privacy
    • Others are always around even at odd hours of the day
  • Can be a distracting atmosphere
    • There will always be side conversations and phone calls
    • Will not have a door that can be shut for important phone calls
  • A lack of security
    • Any items that you bring are your responsibility
    • If you leave to use the restroom, what do you do with your laptop
  • Social Distancing
    • This will now always be a con of shared offic
    • Unsure if others are sick or of their cleanliness

Final Thoughts on Shared Offices and Coworking Spaces

Under the current health situations, a shared office or coworking space might not be ideal for everyone, but as more people get the vaccines and spaces focus more on being sanitary this will change. Shared offices allow freelancers or new startups to have a designated space to work outside of their homes.

They allow people to have a place where they can just mentally flip the switch that it is now time to work. They are also much cheaper for small business owners in that it is pay per person instead of by square foot. All of these perks will cause shared office spaces to weather the storm that is this pandemic.

Icon Offices have designed a number of shared office and coworking packages to assist people with all types of budgets and requirements. Our cheapest package Standard Package starts form only £60 per person including. Our Premium Fixed Desk co-working shared office / workspace package is only £140 per person per month including VAT. The last time we checked our shared office prices were the cheapest in London and Essex. We have a number of business centres to choose from which include East Ham in East London, Hainault in Ilford, Essex and Chadwell Heath in Romford Essex. Please see here for additional information and also to sign up

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