The arrival of COVID-19 in early 2020 forced millions of workers worldwide to continue their occupations in a remote setting, but this change will not disappear as the pandemic slows down.
Remote and hybrid work models are here to stay, which gives flexible office providers new opportunities to redefine their coworking spaces and improve their offerings and services for new members. In a post-pandemic work environment, here’s why so many companies are turning to coworking spaces as an alternative to working from home.
Location is everything
The economic effects of the pandemic will linger for years to come, and one of the greatest impacts has been the way companies utilize traditional office spaces. In the face of lost profits and mass lay-offs, only the biggest companies could hope to keep their office headquarters, forcing many startups and smaller teams to share third-party coworking spaces instead.
Still, some people who worked remotely through the pandemic have mixed feelings about returning to a crowded office. They or a loved one might be immunocompromised, or they simply prefer working in their own space with minimal outside distractions. Whatever their concerns, it’s critical to find a hybrid setup or shared office space that meet their needs.
First, companies should make it a priority to find locations that employees can easily access with a light commute. Fortunately, the number of spaces has expanded drastically in the last decade across dozens of cities, meaning there are plenty of options even in suburban locales.
In a new era where having a headquarters or central office is no longer the protocol, choosing a location or several locations that are close by employees’ homes is likely the only way people will want to return to in-office work.
Navigating coworking spaces
Once you find the best location(s) for your team, you’ll want to discuss the space offerings and amenities with the coworking owners. If your team is small and agile, it probably makes the most sense to secure a hot desk for each employee, which they can access at their convenience.
If you have a larger team of 10 employees or more, it makes more sense to book a private office or series of dedicated desks. This perk could be the deciding factor for employees who became used to a quiet and secluded work-from-home environments during the pandemic. A private office provides some degree of privacy and can make at-risk employees feel more comfortable.
It’s also wise to learn about the space’s cleaning procedures and preventive measures to reduce the spread of COVID-19, which is still experiencing spikes in certain countries.
Even with a clean and comfortable coworking space, some employees might still prefer to choose their own setting. A recent study by Harvard Business School found that the “sweet spot” for many employees in a post-pandemic working world is going into an office or shared workspace one to two times per week and working the other days from home.
Benefits of flex office spaces
Businesses of all sizes can expect to benefit from using coworking spaces in several ways. As discussed, it gives employees more autonomy in choosing their work environments. If they don’t want to return to an office full-time or they’re tired of working from home, a coworking space can be their happy medium.
By offering the option to use a coworking space, your strategy appears both professional and accommodating. This will attract new employees, especially among younger generations who look for a flexible work environment.
Finally, with the right technology available, coworking spaces can provide a setting where employees connect with each other and produce results. By having on-demand meeting spaces, collaborative work rooms, and the opportunity to network with other professionals, employees will feel more connected to an established community and more inclined to commit to their work.