A software developer, an HR manager, a video games designer and a social media enthusiast are walking into a bar. And now the bar becomes a coworking space. 

In reality, the first idea of coworking space – which paved the way to the craze adoption of the flexible office concept by companies – was born in 1995. Back then, 17 computer engineers from Berlin created one of the first-ever “hackerspaces” to exchange ideas and codes, and to meet like-minded people. 

It took seven more years for this idea to evolve into what we have accustomed to call coworking. In 2002, two Australians set up the first true coworking workspace in the world in Vienna. It now houses various freelancers, startups, consultants, and even architects.

What do we have now?

In 2019, there were nearly 19,000 coworking spaces and more than 30,000 flexible workspaces globally, according to Statista

And in 2020 we faced the COVID-19 pandemic and economic recession. The world of work has dramatically changed and will continue changing further. 

No one could deny that the 9-to-5 in an office environment is dead. The most popular option now is when people can use the central office from time to time. This enables employers to significantly cut their estate costs, while employees can easier maintain work-life balance without spending extra time to get to work. 

That’s why coworking or flexible office space is now a global trend with a market value of over $26 billion. Let’s sort out what benefits this way of working can bring: 

  1. You can rent a smaller but more high-class office to impress potential clients and top talents;
  2. Flexible terms – no need to sign a traditional rental contract for a year or more, which means a smaller commitment and less risk;
  3. On-site manager – any issues can be quickly addressed, while crucial requests are processed immediately; 
  4. In a flexible office, staffing is covered by a provider with all-inclusive services — no need to hire extra people to restock printers, welcome guests or clean. You can spend your time and energy on business needs instead of tiny office issues;
  5. No costs for unused space. Deals with landlords often include more space than a company actually needs. Coworking spaces allow companies to customize their coworking plans, using up as much space as they need, or as little as they need.

Are there any disadvantages in flexible office?

Yes, drawbacks and risks do exist, although there are not so many of them. 

Conclusion

The main idea is now clear – the traditional office is now something that many companies are drifted away from. Whether you choose a coworking space or a flexible office – you choose improved productivity, better morale, work-life balance, and much lower costs. However, to enjoy all these benefits of a flexible office, you should mind the need to research new tools to supervise employees, track all changes and effectiveness during the transition period and the need to have established rules and processes within a flexible facility.

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