Start-ups and small businesses are increasingly looking toward coworking for the office space that they need. Coworking does offer a number of distinctive benefits for companies; however, they are not without their shortcomings. Read on to explore the pros and cons of coworking so that you can make an informed decision.
Pros of Coworking
1. Opportunities for Networking
In a coworking environment, you and your team will have the opportunity to interact with individuals from many different companies and industries on a daily basis. This opens the doors to expand your company's network; you may find that a service provider, vendor or even a new customer are among your co-tenants.
2. Greater Flexibility
Coworking allows companies to secure office space at an affordable price without having to sign a long-term lease. As a result, coworking can be an excellent option for start-ups as well as for companies with less-than-certain futures.
3. Lower Costs
With coworking, you're unlikely to be responsible for a number of costs commonly passed on to tenants, such as janitorial services and ongoing building maintenance.
4. Access to Amenities
Coworking buildings often offer attractive amenities to tenants. These may include gyms, child care and onsite bars, restaurants and coffee shops. Having access to these amenities can improve employee morale and assist with retention.
5. Less Wait to Move In
Entering into a coworking agreement is much simpler and more streamlined than commercial leasing. You're unlikely to have to go through numerous rounds of negotiations to get a fair deal, and you won't have to wait for a build-out to be complete before you move in. Some coworking spaces are even fully furnished and ready for your team as soon as you sign the contract.
Cons of Coworking
1. Lack of Private Spaces
Many coworking setups include open office space that numerous companies share. This can lead to distracted employees and make it challenging to handle confidential and sensitive information.
2. Being in Close Quarters With Potential Competition
Commercial office leases often provide exclusivity for tenants, eliminating worries about a competitor ending up as your neighbor. You're less likely to have this type of guarantee with coworking. Plus, you run the risk of star employees being poached by other companies who see them in action.
3. Clashes in Culture
In a coworking setting, you may end up sharing space with companies that have dramatically different corporate cultures than your own. This could lead to conflicts and even business interruptions.
4. Limitations on Work Hours
Many coworking buildings are open only for a set number of hours per day. These hours may not be conducive to your business needs, and they can interfere with flexible schedule options like allowing employees to work long shifts for a three or four-day work week.
5. Less Room to Grow
If your business begins to expand rapidly, you may find that you quickly run out of space in your coworking environment. Although the lack of a long-term lease means you can relocate, you may have to go through the process of finding a new coworking setup or leasable office space sooner than you think.
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