According to statistics, in 2017 the number of coworking spaces worldwide has reached 13,800. Given the fact that in 2012 there were only 2000 of such hubs globally, this is a massive increase which highlights the growing popularity of shared working spaces. It also means that each big city has at least a dozen coworking centres, which can make it tricky to pick the best one to go to when you have to get real work done. But worry no more – we’ve prepared a checklist of factors to take into account while making a choice.
If you prefer meeting your clients or partners in a shared office, a nice area which is close to the city centre can make a good impression and create a positive foundation for your business relationships. If you use a coworking space just for yourself, check the area surrounding the building – are there parks to stroll around when you get tired? Is there a decent cafe to grab a bite or restaurant to bring a client? Is it far from your home or does it have good transport links?
Check out the availability of spaces and calculate how much you could expect to pay on any given day. What does that add up to over a year and is it within your budget?
Each coworking spot has its own kind of community that you certainly need to consider. If you’re a freelance writer, make sure that people who will share the space with you work in the digital domain. If you’re a web developer, find out where small startups hang out to join their ecosystem, and so on.
What’s more, the community plays a significant role in your career and business growth. Maria Trujillo, a graphic designer, who opened her own company, says that after joining the workforce of shared workspace, a great part of her business has started to derive from individuals she meets at the coworking hub. Remember that you have to network to get work!
Let’s face it – it is one of the most essential criteria of choosing the right place. Chances are that your whole work hinges on this facility, so take your time checking whether there are any glitches or problems with the connection. You can easily do that by looking up the reviews of the place on websites like Facebook, Google or Trust Pilot.
Don’t underestimate the colour of walls, arrangement of tables and the light. These are factors that can greatly impact your productivity, mood or even physical state (e.g. bright colours can cause headaches and poor illumination can worsen your eyesight).
Do you sometimes need separate rooms for important Skype calls? Is a printer an essential for you? Do coffee/tea cost extra or is it on the house? These are details that shouldn’t be ignored. We advise you to make a list of all amenities that you require and check whether the co-workspace provides them.
According to the results of 2017 Global Coworking Survey, 34% of all people spending time in such workplaces find suitable spots by word of mouth while 23% do the Internet research. So, don’t reinvent the wheel – talk with your friends, surf online and visit a few to ensure that they meet your needs.