A few years back, it may have seemed incomprehensible for two companies to share the same office workspace, but the times are changing. Collaborative workspaces are on the rise, driven by a multitude of factors. According to CBRE (Commercial Real Estate Services Canada), collaborative workspaces leapfrogged by 70 percent in 2018, and the trend seems to be rising steadily. Is a collaborative office space right for your business? Let’s examine the benefits of embracing such a setup.
1) Cost Reductions
Collaborative workspaces can be extremely attractive for startups and lightweight companies, such as digital marketing firms. By sharing a space, you’re effectively slicing a percentage of your overhead costs, to potentially half. Consider the cost of amenities, alone. Utility costs can be shared between both companies, drastically reducing annual costs, and paving the way for more growth. Renting an entire building or floor might be less beneficial than simply sharing one with another company, or renting out a percentage of the floor space, such as an office or two. There is a slight sacrifice of privacy, but with the right planning, a company can overcome this and reap the best of both worlds. This can accelerate the growth of a company by allowing it to cut costs significantly in the first few years of operation, before scaling accordingly.
2) Up, Up and Away
Speaking of scaling, it may be possible to rent more space as the team grows, provided the company you’re sharing with is willing and able to do so. By planning in advance for successive years of growth, one can negotiate early on for those moments when you’ll add new members to your team. This can be beneficial for companies operating in different locales, as well. The collaborative workspace model can further alleviate costs and provide scaling opportunities to multiple cities or countries where you might want to set up shop.
3) Expanding Your Circle
Working alongside another company under a single roof can have tremendous networking benefits. There is always the possibility for criss-crossing business opportunities, referrals to the other side’s client base, and strong word-of-mouth advertising. This is especially true if the work environment is a positive and friendly one. Additionally, your partner company may have access to invaluable resources that you may be looking for, from top-tier talent, to production entities that could take your business to the next level in a much shorter period of time. And finally, it’s always good to work alongside people who know the neighborhood, the building, and the amenities therein.
4) The Human Factor
Collaborative workspaces tend to focus on floor plans and layouts that encourage interaction between employees. This open-style environment allows for a sense of flexibility and relaxation in the workplace, as opposed to closed environments that may stifle exchanges between team members. Employees can have meetings in laid back spaces, at lunch tables, or even on the couch. They can also be permitted some flexibility in how they decorate their respective spaces, to make it all their own. This methodology fosters creativity and enthusiasm among team members, and can significantly boost company morale, and quality of work. When paired with the right office furniture, such as fluidconcepts Alterna product line, one can forge the perfect collaborative workspace that balances practicality, functionality and a non-linear sense of openness and relaxation.
5) Portability and Versatility Combined
When joining a collaborative workspace, a company can cut out a huge chunk of stress, time and money in favor of a “plug and play” approach. There’s no need to worry about the Wi-Fi, the phone lines, amenities or construction costs. Everything is already set up, allowing your team to move in quickly, with much less pressure. Should a compromising scenario arise, a company can exit in much the same fashion, without any undue pressure. Once established, a company can carve out its own space through styling guidelines and decor that create a real sense of brand identity. This is especially advantageous for companies that do not rely on physical production methods, and focus more on the marketing, real estate and advertising sectors, to name but a few.
Collaborative office workspaces can be financially beneficial, socially rewarding, and lead to greater work output. Studies have shown that employees react in overwhelmingly positive fashion to collaborative spaces, and are more inclined to identify with company culture, and stay for the long haul. It’s a fresh and vibrant take on the traditional workspace, and a signal of shifting company culture as a whole. With the right planning, layout and office furniture, one can enjoy a beneficial relationship alongside another company, in an environment well suited for both. For versatile, contemporary office furniture that can transform a collaborative workspace into something extraordinary, be sure to check out fluidconcepts here