After having launched your newly formed startup or been working out of rented spaces for some time, thinking of moving to a bigger space or a place of your own? Quite rightly, its time you should have an office you call yours.
It is an indicator of growth and scaling up to a better and bigger place is the only progression. So, the options at hand are buying an office space that would require you to pay upfront or look for a coworking space that will give you the flexibility to pay as you grow. Both have their advantages and both are your own.
So, let’s look at some of them and see which one is for you-
1. It’s all about the money
Business per say is evolving in nature, it’s not constant, times and situations can change dramatically and without prior warning. Thus, before taking a big decision like owning an office, thinking about the cost implications plays a huge role. As mentioned earlier, buying or even renting your own space may have a major con, it blocks your funds. The corporate is required to pay a lump sum they can use otherwise for further growth. The positive, you have space you call yours and it does boost the image of your company. However, there is a maintenance cost.
Coworking space, on the other hand, gives flexibility. With the various prices that vary from pay-per-day to monthly, the company is unrestricted and can use its funds in any way possible. It is also advisable to know the membership cancellation policy and any notice you may have to serve before terminating the contract.
Another advantage that shared offices bring are no maintenance. The company that takes membership is not liable to maintain the place, on the contrary, the management of the space is responsible for keeping it in good condition. One of the biggest advantages, it is trouble-free to upsize and downsize as per your requirements and budget.
Now that’s a major perk, we would say.
2. Address matters
Rent or owning a place is directly proportional to the money you are willing to spend. So, yes, having a private office is a good option but if it is not easily accessible to clients or the employees then, it isn’t beneficial to even the business. But, yes, if you have the budget then a prime location is what you should go for.
Coworking places prove to have an upper hand in this aspect, as they offer one membership and many locations. So, choose as per requirement and make use of all the locations of that the coworking space. This gives you the biggest benefit of a prime address without having to burden yourself with the cost. Also, even for your employees, they get the flexibility to work for any location without wasting their time commuting. For clients too, having an impressive address leaves a good impression and they too get the flexibility to hold meetings, as per their convenience.
3. What’s on offer
Cost, check; location, check; time to check the amenities. This is a significant aspect when determining a coworking space. Though, most provide basic facilities like high-speed Wi-Fi, desks and chairs, conference rooms, coffee machines, etc. but, we say, check before taking the membership. Also, confirm if space has extra charges for using any facilities like a dedicated desk, stationery, photocopy, and print-outs, has limitation Wi-Fi limitation and can provide refreshments for external meetings. It is also recommended that you should go for a trial if they offer or use a pay-per-day facility. This will give you a fair idea of the working environment and offered facilities before striking the deal.
All the amenities that a coworking space offers, are things that your company will need to take care of yourself. From good internet services to offering ergonomically designed furniture, everything is your responsibility and comes in addition to the cost of the space. Therefore, before signing a deal for your private office make sure, the wiring for telephone and internet lines are easy to do, there is a place for the photocopier and printer and also, there are enough electric points for the coffee machine and chargers. A plus here, you can stock your own pantry and also, some essential amenities have a one-time installation cost.
4. Know the working hours
It’s your private office, you decide the hours, the working time. Even, if the building has their own rules and operational hours, you as the owner of a space can pay and keep working for as long as you want.
But, this flexibility might not always be available in a coworking space. Some can have fixed working hours. Thus, it’s better to know if your work timings align with that of the facilities. Also, assess the flexibility they are willing to offer.
Furthermore, different shared spaces have different models, so know what kind of facility you would be joining- working out of cafes or in an office area.
5. Interact and Network
Coworking spaces are social business places. As it is not restricted to a particular company, these spaces prevent isolation and give opportunities to network and even make friends. It’s ideal for freelancers, artists, etc. who can feel lonely while working at home. These spaces are more productive too being around people can be motivating. Also, many host social and networking events like weekend dinners, sports night, development workshops etc. for its members. This acts as an opportunity for people across different locations to meet and connect. This is a good way of looking for collaborative working opportunities.
A private office with many people already, don’t face the issue of lonely employees. Since in the case of good people management policies events to meet and know more is a regular and thus, networking is constant. However, in the case of friction between employees, a private space, offers no option but the concerned people to deal with it.
Thus, we conclude by saying, before taking a final decision, know the pros and cons of both and calculate your cost. Whatever saves more money and offers comfort and facility chose that one.
Related Articles: 8 Questions to ask before taking up a Coworking Space