Office or co-working space: which is better?


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So, you’re planning on setting up your business and you’re considering your workspace options. Broadly speaking, you have three core options available: you can operate entirely from a remote location if you’re a freelancer or sole trader, or you can find an office location or co-working space to operate from.

If you hire employees, you may want a space to call your own and build your business from.

In this blog, we will answer the age-old question: office or co-working space, which is better?

Let’s consider a handful of factors, and which comes out on top for each.

Cost: Co-working space. If this is your first venture into business ownership, you’ll have cost very high on your list of priorities. If we are to consider cost in isolation, there’s no question that co-working spaces are far more cost-efficient than an office.

Rates tend to be flexible with co-working spaces too, with hourly, daily, and monthly space rentals available, which is good for cash flow!

Flexibility: Co-working space. There’s only one winner when it comes to having flexibility with where you work. Offices are designed to provide longer-term stability by locking you into annual tenancies, which of course provides stability. 

However, for smaller operations that thrive on the ability to be mobile and move around, a co-working space won’t lock you into anything long term. 

As mentioned, too, rates are generally flexible and you can swap spaces on a regular basis. Cheap and flexible – sounds good, doesn’t it?

Company Culture: Office. Amongst the talk of the tangible aspects, it’s important not to lose sight of the intangible. You’ll want to build a positive company culture to make your office an attractive place to work, and one way you do that is by collaborating, in person, on the ground, with team members to establish a culture of collaboration and teamwork.

Is this still possible when you operate from a co-working space? Yes, but we doubt it will feel the same. If you want a company culture that thrives, you need a space to call your own that lets it thrive. 

On the topic of scaling…

Scaling: Office. So, you’ve got plans to go big? Nice! Well, to begin with, you’ll need to move out of that co-working space you’ve been operating from.

To scale your business, your own office space is crucial. 

Office Space

Privacy: Office. The privacy we’re talking about here has both formal and informal ramifications. Informally, you probably don’t want random people listening to your work conversations when you’re in a co-working space. Also, if you’ve got any intellectual property, it’s not ideal to be keeping that on your personal possession when you head home.

Having an office is so much more than building culture and having a place to collaborate – it’s about having a space to operate from which is personal to you, and has reliable privacy. 

Amenities: Draw. This one is what you make of it, to be honest. If you have your own office, you’re free to add the amenities you want to your personal space, and many office locations are available in buildings which have access to supermarkets, coffee shops, and local amenities.

The same is also true for co-working spaces, who remain competitive by providing in-house amenities through third parties. That could also be a coffee shop, or a range of light bite/lunch focused restaurants. 

Hopefully you found this blog useful when looking for an answer to the question: office vs co-working space, which is better. You have a lot to think about when setting up your own business – we hope this provided some objective thinking towards your decision.

If you’re looking for further advice about whether to choose an office space or a co-working arrangement, we’d be delighted to talk you through your options. Contact the team via [email protected], or call us on 800 BIZ.