Shared offices are a great option for start up businesses, and those who need a temporary space from which to operate.
A shared office basically means that you rent a space within a large open plan office, however these spaces sometimes feature smaller, individual offices too. This means you’re going to be neighbours and working very closely with other small businesses.
This isn’t an option which works for every single business, but it’s a good idea as a stop-gap, if your current office is undergoing a renovation, or if you’re just starting out and you’re yet to find a larger office space which you can call your own. This can be a great money saver in the short-term, and you can also make use of rented office furniture, if you really want to keep cash in your pocket!
Some spaces will have furniture in there already, and you use that as part of your agreement with the landlord or owner of the building, but some are empty and require you to bring your own office chairs and other furniture pieces. This is something you need to bear in mind when you’re thinking about using a shared office space.
A shared office is probably not going to be a long-term solution for most businesses, but it’s certainly a good option for a short while. Despite that, can an office such as this ever really be that productive, due to the amount of noise and traffic you’ll be experiencing?
It really depends upon the size of the space and your neighbours. You might have a small start up working alongside you who are extremely quiet and don’t bother you at all. On the other hand, you might have a very lively, collaboratively-minded group who are quite loud, despite your protestations! Unfortunately, in this case, it all comes down to luck. You have no idea who your neighbours are going to be until you look further into the situation, and this is something which should form your decision.
If you find a shared office which consists of large spaces, separated by walls or glass, that’s a great option for productivity. This means you’re going to have less distractions and less noise, allowing your staff to concentrate and focus on the task at hand. You could also look into whether the space has a dedicated meeting room or collaborative space, and use this when you need to gather everyone together for group discussions. You’ll probably need to book time in advance, to ensure that you’re not treading on anyone else’s toes who wants to use the space, but this is an easy enough process.
Shared office spaces are unlikely to contain expensive office desks and high end furniture choices, but they will allow you to function throughout a temporary period of relocation. There aren’t too many businesses that choose to stay within shared offices over the long-term, but this doesn’t mean you won’t find one that does. The productivity really depends on the space itself, and when looking around for potential sites, you need to visit them first and ask questions before you make a decision. Only then can you really tell whether that space will be a productive option for your business to work from.
So, let’s sum up. Can a shared office space really ever be productive? Yes, but you need to tread carefully and choose a space which has privacy tools in place. If you can do that, you’ll find shared offices a great cost saver for a short period of time, allowing you to either complete renovation of your current office, or find a space which fits the bill for the future.
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