May 2018 – A coworking office is an environment where self-employed entrepreneurs, or people with different employers, work in a casual, yet professional, community-like atmosphere. Most coworking spaces include shared office amenities, meeting rooms, casual lounges and on-site restaurants or cafes. Some even include private offices and the added benefit of business networking events, with costs based on the frequency of use and packaged as monthly or long-term memberships.
Coworking Is on The Rise – Latest Report
The Global Coworking Forecast Report released in December 2017 by Small Business Labs, a company that tracks and forecasts trends and shifts which may impact the future of small businesses, projected a continued and rapid growth within the coworking office space industry over the next 5 years.
The report provided context from a series of both US and international coworking conferences for a global perspective on this industry and its future.
It was forecast that the number of global coworking spaces would grow from 14,411 in 2017 to just over 30,000 by 2022, which indicates an average annual growth rate of 16.1%. The number of coworking members is expected to grow from 1.74 million in 2017 to 5.1 million in 2022.
China is expected to become the world’s largest coworking market by 2022, shortly followed by India. Other regions identified for rapid coworking growth include parts of Africa, South and Central America, Eastern Europe and Russia.
Why Is Coworking So Popular?
The popularity of fully-furnished and serviced coworking office spaces can be attributed to several factors which include; the improved flexibility of lease structuring and office space designs, lower office operational costs as well as extensive networking opportunities to help tenants to gain more business exposure.
Office Space in Sandton – The Showentell Story
Showentell, a coworking tenant-based at The Business Exchange, is an example of how sharing a coworking office can stimulate a company’s economy. Mpumelelo Dube, Creative Director for Showentell, discussed the journey that his company took from its initial humble beginnings, when they first operated out of a small house. “We needed to interact with our clients as a business and started looking for office space to rent,” said Dube. “We liked the corporate clientele associated with The Business Exchange and through their value-add services, especially the networking opportunities, they helped us elevate our business. We have doubled our revenue since we have taken tenancy at The Business Exchange.”
Office Space in Rosebank – The Command Quality Story
Andrew Loots, of technology company Command Quality, also appreciates the value-adds that The Business Exchange offers. “There is a lack of skilled resources in our industry and it is very difficult to find competent people,” said Loots. “We chose The Business Exchange because it enabled us to network and we ended up partnering with recruitment companies for our talent acquisition. We also found that The Business Exchange provided a far more flexible and competitive offering. Its offices are in great locations too – close to major shopping malls with easy access to transportation.”
Loots also added that The Business Exchange community is diverse, consisting of both small and large companies which enjoy a high degree of collaboration with each other. “Nowadays, business is about collaborating to become more competitive at what you do,” he said.