5 Must-Haves When Looking for A Coworking Space

Coworking spaces are all the rage right now and for good reason. With more than 3.9 million Americans working remotely each year, the need for an office without the strings attached is at an all-time high. While staying at home and lounging while you work sounds enticing, many people find they can become unproductive. One of the biggest drawbacks of remote working is the lack of social interaction throughout the day, which has proven to lead to depression and anxiety. Working in a space that you share with others like-minded people, however, provides the energy that fuels motivation and creativity; hence, why coworking space is a growing trend. These coworking spaces can provide a location where independent professionals can gather and share space or office work while still enjoying the benefits of working remotely.

Coworking spaces are not a one size fits all, so finding what works best is vital. If your coworking space doesn’t have these 4 must-haves, then you might regret it later.

Coworking Culture:

People working in a shared work space area

Like any business, a coworking space must have a distinct culture that fits your own. This is not to say the same types of business must be in the same space. However, if the companies in the space focus mainly on virtual assistance, it would not make much sense for an agricultural loan officer to be a part of this environment. Creating an environment where the businesses don’t clash—but instead work together in harmony—is ideal. Pay attention to the environment and demographics that your space leans too and make your choice wisely. Remote workers will thrive in an environment that fuels their productivity.

Must-Haves! Dedicated Rooms:

Conference table in a Coworking Conference room

Many shared workspace members conduct business from their personal laptop which travels with them. But some companies and individuals need more than just a table and chair to achieve their goals. Some need separate desks or even cubicles when necessary. Others may need an enclosed group area to collaborate and bounce ideas off one another; this is where a conference room becomes vital. The conference room should be equipped with a table and chairs big enough to accommodate the needs of a group. A mounted tv for presentations, a whiteboard, and a projector are also great additions to look for.

Must-Haves? Common Space(s) and Quality Amenities

Example of ideal kitchen amenities in a shared work environment

While the working area is important, it’s also important to consider a few basic amenities. The amenities can often be the deciding factor whether a business or individual chooses to use a certain coworking office space or not.

It comes as no surprise the coworking space should have some type of snack and beverage area—a small coffee area with a vending machine will do fine—but many places offer a full, in-house kitchen with sinks, cabinetry, microwaves, and refrigerators which would probably have more appeal.

Having a comfortable area to take care of your hungry tummy is important, but don’t forget to check the size, cleanliness, and availability of restrooms as well.

Most importantly, Wi-Fi and security network considerations! For anyone to be productive in a coworking space there must be strong, fast, and SAFE high-speed internet.

Does your new, potential shared office have accessible printers and extra computers if they’re needed? Even though people sharing workspace are generally self-sufficient, it should many of the same needs a traditional office would have. It would also be wise to consider the reception and waiting area for any customers or clients who may visit you there. Adding or looking for a space with these amenities you’ll be as successful and productive as possible.

Must-Haves? Networking Opportunities

People sharing a shared coworking environment Being in an environment where you share a workspace with other companies and independent professionals is extremely beneficial when you first start out. Not only does it get your business name and brand out there, but it can also create great networking relationships with people just like you! Just remain considerate to the fact social and networking opportunities between others should be kept to business-only objectives as much as possible. Everyone is there to work not necessarily socialize and network. If you are looking networking or sales opportunities only, consider joining a group tailored to that goal.

Must Haves? A Coworking Community Manager

Reception Desk and Chair Like any business, a coworking environment should have a community manager or someone who can answer common questions about the office. If a company is struggling to connect to the WI-FI or would like to know how and when the membership fee will be charged, it’s the community manager's responsibility to provide help and assistance as a part of your lease, not other professionals you’re sharing the space with. Make sure you meet this person or people and make sure you can communicate efficiently with them. Providing exemplary management service will lets everyone know the owner is invested in their success and be happy to share their experience with other companies.

Remember, finding a shared office space with the best amenities and customer service to fit your personality, business, and style is key. If the building and atmosphere does not speak to your needs, don’t be afraid to keep looking until you find what’s best for you.