Coworking spaces have transformed the way we work today. It provides flexibility, and takes care of the basic amenities such as desk space, electricity, and internet connection and all a person has to do is pay for their space at a reasonable price. Unlike the traditional set-up with direct-to-asset purchase and bearing all the overheads that came with it.
It is estimated by the end of the year, there will be over 26,000 coworking spaces globally. Furthermore, 10% of office spaces are occupied by coworking and are expected to rise to approximately 25% in the next few years.
Plus, the working population today likes to perform on their own time and there is one crowd in particular that prefers a coworking environment.
According to Forbes, millennials are especially fond of coworking spaces for a few reasons, namely, affordability and not having to worry about the overheads.
However, as the workforce changes, coworking space also needs to evolve itself to remain relevant to the dynamic, new working-age population. Here are some ways, the future of coworking spaces can shape the new age of work:
Revamp Workplace Strategy
Be it a coworking workplace or an enterprise, the people managing these organisations need to understand the mindset of Gen Z, who are the future of the workforce. Millennials will soon become the new elders and will more likely stick with their existing business. Gen Z, on the other hand, seeks experiences and a better work-life balance.
Collaborative Working Environment
Every professional these days seeks to work in a place that has a conducive work environment with enhanced collaboration and accessibility. This means less silo departments and more collaborative spaces with an employee-centric workplace.
As the way work changes, coworking space should be able to physically change as well. A coworking space that is more collaborative, offering wellness programming or a robust and dynamic design plan that puts employee needs first, without sacrificing productivity, will help companies easily align with the younger generation of workers seeking long-term careers.
Most coworking space providers offer a huge gamut of services to their partner companies like crèche facilities, locker rooms, courier services, cafeteria, gaming zones, and gym facilities among others. These amenities help in assisting employees by making all the essentials, available at the click of a button.
Going The Extra Mile
For the younger generation, talking about inclusivity and sustainability is not enough. A business needs to showcase that they can walk the talk.
According to Cushman & Wakefield, 29 per cent of millennials rank environmental concerns as their top priority. Whereas, Gen Z has the highest level of social awareness, and that is reflected in their employment choices. Corporate social responsibility, alongside flexibility, is perhaps the leading competitive recruitment strategy moving into the next decade.
Workspace design and setup
A cubicle is a thing of the past and Gen Z will most likely not join a company that still has this type of setup. Soft furnishings that can be changed with the needs of the office and through subscription services are more popular than ever and for good reason. A coworking space that gives people the power to make their own space will be more successful in retaining talent. Business-wise it makes sense as there will be less waste and consumption which allows for more flexibility to create the workspace of the future. Telephone booths, hot desking, an open workspace set-up are here to stay for the long run.
Recreational Events and Corporate Training Workshops
Employees look forward to working in a collaborative workplace with engaging recreational activities. Most coworking spaces have dedicated activity rooms and recreational areas within their campus to help companies keep their employees motivated and engaged.
Some coworking spaces also arrange weekly events like coffee painting, karaoke, Zumba fitness, baking sessions, etc to help employees rewind and relax. Of late, most coworking space providers have started arranging corporate training workshops in the office premises to help employees revamp their existing knowledge and skills.
Such networking opportunities and exposure help keep the employees motivated and increase their productivity.
Coworking spaces need to understand the demands of the modern workforce and continuously innovate to provide state-of-the-art workspaces, adept with all the latest technology, amenities and recreational activities. Providing employees with a flexible workplace and a collaborative environment will not only help them learn new skills and grow but also help companies grow and retain talent. The future of coworking spaces rests on their relevancy and adaptation to the needs of the modern workforce.