6 questions to ask yourself before selecting a co-working space
The right office can have a huge impact upon company productivity and effectiveness. Offices and work environments are crucial to employee engagement, – disengaged employees are 37% more likely to indulge in absenteeism and show 60% more errors in their work, leading to an 18% fall in productivity and a 16% fall in profitability, according to studies by the Gallup organization and the Queens School of Business. Finding and procuring the perfect office space requires a meticulous review of available properties, added to the logistical hassle of finding the right furnishing, fittings, and supplies. To address this problem, employers and business owners are increasingly turning towards co-working and premium office-spaces to find the best working environments for their workforce.
The mushrooming of a variety of office-spaces, with each asserting that their offerings are the best in the market, creates a new and unexpected layer of confusion. To help you navigate to the right decision and find the right home for your business, Rahul Agrawal, Founder & CEO, WORKSPACE culls out 6 questions to ask yourself before selecting a co-working or premium office space.
How suitable is the location for you and your employees?
The location of your office is critical for a variety of reasons, with commuting convenience and brand image being the most notable. Every working day, employees will leave from home to arrive at the new address. Is it conveniently located for most employees? Is it easily accessible from public transit? In the long and medium term, if employees and their residences – change; will the address stand the test of time and still be accessible for most? From an image point of view, your address will be carried on your website and – be something that will be associated with your company from the first day itself. Being located at a prestigious commercial centre might go a long way in helping your company build a good reputation amongst clients, collaborators, and vendors. Therefore, look for a well–situated office – near a public transit hub, bearing an address that will impress your clients, employees and peers alike.
Will the space suit your working style?
India Inc. has grown remarkably variegated over the last few years, with every conceivable kind of working culture in existence today – from exceedingly formal and hierarchical structures to more laid-back and relaxed working environments. It is important that the co-working or premium office-space you choose is a good fit for your company’s working style and culture. This would determine whether you would be better off with an open working space or segregated cubicles, for instance. If you expect frequent visits from important clients or vendors, a well-accoutred and designed conference room would be important. If you are doing business with foreign clients, you would need an office space that is open for long hours and has comprehensive communication capabilities like video conferencing facilities. The best way to figure this out is to visualize working for 1 year in that space – would it match all your needs during that – time period? Would the office make your company grow and prosper?
Are the costs and seating plans suitable for you and flexible enough?
Various co-working – and premium office spaces offer differing plans with varied flexibility. From buying individual hot seats (shifting workstations allocated on a periodic basis) in the short term to booking bays or wings for months or even a year, – plans and expectations of your company would play a key role in determining what works for you, and whether the provider you are considering can meet your requirements. Everything from the duration, the total area, the scope for expansion, the ability to customize the space, and the facilities available to you and your employees would be an important to factor in your choice. Given the extremely dynamic nature of the market and business, your estimations are likely to be inaccurate to some degree or the other – make sure that the provider is flexible and can accommodate your changing needs over time.
How good are the networking spaces and opportunities?
One of the major benefits co-working spaces offer is the ability to network with peers from other companies and enterprises, and the potential of finding new business through chance meetings in shared office spaces. Whether it is learning from others or finding new clients or suppliers, the importance of networking cannot be overstated, especially for inchoate ventures. Ensure that the co-working space or premium office space has common shared areas for interaction and networking, so that more enterprising employees can run into business development opportunities over a cup of coffee or a shared moment with an employee from another company. Finding out which other companies are taking up that space, determining the kinds of businesses that these providers are targeting, and figuring out your own company’s place in such offices will be crucial in helping you make your choice.
Are there provisions for the basic infrastructure and supplies needed for productivity?
Part of the logistical hassle in procuring your own office space comes from the plethora of different supplies needed to run an office in a productive manner. From basic stationery to whiteboards, markers to pens, printers to good WiFi, ample storage space to a good receptionist and competent administrative staff, the list of requirements is extremely long. Based upon your company’s working style and ethos, which one of these facilities is important would differ. While some things like good coffee and tea would be important for every company, you might not need whiteboards and markers. Make sure the available facilities match your requirements, and see whether the use of any would carry a charge.
What are the benefits and perks for each provider?
Co-working and premium office spacesare all keen to distinguish themselves and attempt to add different features and benefits to appeal to you, their potential customer. -Good – office spaces would ensure an accessible creche for the infants of employees and a well-supplied café at the very least. At the higher end of the spectrum, the best spaces would offer salons, gyms, restaurants, – snooze rooms, and some open spaces to catch a breath of fresh air and sunlight during the hectic workday. These facilities are often a keen differentiator for high-performing employees, and a premium office space would be best for employers to hire promising talent.
Your new office will be a home-away-from-home for you and your company. Choosing the right -office space could mean the difference between a productive and conducive work environment and a chaotic workday full of frustration and dissatisfaction for employees. Take some time and consider all these aspects, answer all these questions, and choose wisely. The future residence of your company deserves special attention and care.