For small business owners and independent professionals, the costs of setting up and maintaining traditional offices can be punitive.
Rental rates in popular business districts are soaring, telecoms and utility tariffs continue to increase at well above the inflation rate and creating a comfortable work environment can take a chunk out of your wallet.
Crippling costs and overheads
Leasing secure floor space in Cape Town or Johannesburg costs anything from about R120 to R250 or even more per square metre.
Initially, you’ll also have to fork out on a deposit and on the once-off costs of equipping and furnishing an office.
Add in electricity, water, a landline or mobile contract, ADSL or fibre internet and general cleaning and maintenance services, and your monthly overheads are likely to be steep.
The social element
For independent professionals and freelancers, feelings of isolation can impact negatively on the “happiness factor” created by carving their own way in the business world.
Working from an isolated small office or from home can also prevent people from making important business connections with others.
The New Age workspace: what millennials want
A snap survey of “millennial” workers revealed what they want from their workspaces.
This demographic in South Africa currently includes upwards of 1.5 million self-employed entrepreneurs, who contribute an estimated 40% of the country’s total remuneration. So it’s worth considering what they want in terms of office space:
- an engaging workspace that’s comfortable and feels like home
- more open and social meeting spaces
- quick, casual, remote and socially interactive meetings driven by technology
- support for collaboration and innovation, at whatever times and places suit workers and their current activities.
Overall, workers want more flexibility and autonomy. They no longer want to be locked in behind office doors, where silence is more stifling than conducive to creative, productive work.
The emergence of alt-office space
We’ve all heard about alternative facts and alternative news. Now, it’s alternative office space that’s catching on. Why? Because it satisfies many of the new generation workspace demands outlined above.
Telecommunicating, satellite offices and creating open-plan work areas are all examples of alt-office space embraced by large organisations across the world. A more appropriate solution for startups, freelancers and young entrepreneurs is coworking, or shared office space.
Benefits of shared office space
Aside from the obvious cost savings of sharing space, furniture and equipment, a shared office is a turn-key solution that’s available when you want it.
You can meet with and impress prospective business partners and customers in a high-end office environment, and run your day-to-day operations simply by walking-in and using the fully serviced facilities.
Equally important, a shared office space promotes social interactions and business networking. It helps keep independent workers from becoming too isolated and can lead to important, mutually beneficial business opportunities.
Why choose The Workspace?
The Workspace offers affordable coworking packages at exceptionally well-equipped, stylish facilities in prime business areas.
All our coworking areas feature a good mix of private work booths and attractive, open areas for relaxing, socialising and networking. Our clients also enjoy access to high-speed internet, meeting rooms, boardrooms and a range of business services.