Coworking will continue to be a bright spot in the demand for new age office space

By Manas Mehrotra

Patterns of work have changed globally with a lot of emphasis on flexibility, hybridity and customization. There has been a shift from traditional to modern workspaces which has created greater productivity in the workforce. Naturally, companies have taken advantage of the new paradigm of work and provided infrastructure to employees that keeps them contented and incentivized. All this has a created a whole new confidence among companies with employees too demonstrating loyalty to them. The coworking sector is already accounting for 20% market share of the overall office space demand and is expected to touch 35 per cent by 2025. Hence, this is a positive scenario for coworking spaces and multiple factors shared by Manas Mehrotra, Founder, 315Work Avenue will drive the demand for shared spaces as we step into the future.

Corporate demand will continue to press forward

The profile of companies taking up coworking spaces has changed rapidly. In the initial phase, they would comprise individuals, start-ups, entrepreneurs and mid-size companies. But now large corporates and enterprises have a significant presence in coworking offices. In the past, large companies hesitated in shifting to coworking models, but having tasted the benefits of the latter, they are now a major presence now. The most significant factor that has driven this change is the massive cut in capex costs. Infrastructure and customization are readily available for clients that is prompting them to make the shift to new office spaces, thus enhancing the demand for coworking workspaces.

Positive employee experience will be the focus

With a lot of hesitation to return to office after a long stint of work from home, companies began to look at ways to incentivize employees and create the right ambience for them to work from office. This meant that office experience had to be superior to experience at home. Hence, changes are being introduced not only to enhance the overall design of the office, but also the personal well- being of the employee. Along with ergonomics, health and wellness are major priorities. This is creating an atmosphere for employees to work from office and to enhance their productivity.

Space as a service will be the motto

Companies have realized that they cannot afford to focus on issues like building and maintaining offices and that they would be better off spending time on work. Hence, workspace as a service will be a critical driver of coworking in the future. Clients would prefer coworking space providers to handle all infrastructural issue like design and creativity and make provision for all routine tasks. This model makes a lot of difference to companies as they need not worry about spending time on providing facilities to employees that would best be addressed by coworking spaces.

Community building is a major priority now

While working from home was inevitable, the possibility of isolation among employees was high. Companies realized that the well-being of employees resided in greater social ambience and that offices were a major solution to this problem. Employers were keen to rebuild ties not just within their team, but in the larger business community they work within. And the best way community is built is by conducting various events, workshops, and networking opportunities. A healthy community would go a long way in enhancing productivity of the employees.

Hybridity and flexibility will continue

Companies are increasingly aware that commute time is a critical factor in enhancing productivity. Longer the commute, lower the productivity. Hence, the focus is now on reducing commute distance and time to give employees an opportunity to have a better work-life-balance. Hence, hybridity and flexibility have become the key strategies of companies and coworking spaces located closer home are a top priority. This is a great opportunity for the managed workforce as satellite workspaces are becoming increasingly popular as a flexible and convenient solution for modern workplaces.

Technology will drive the future of coworking

Artificial intelligence has spawned a range of intelligence technologies that are in high demand in the coworking space as automation has become a key driver of coworking spaces. The workforce expects new services and benefits from their workspace, including access to the latest tech in all spheres. This makes it a necessity to have technology integration which is not only common, but is often required in order to attract and maintain the workforce. Tech integration is a key feature of coworking spaces now, and it’s only going to become more important as the industry evolves.

In conclusion, it can be said that there are multiple drivers of the coworking industry as we head into the future. The number of companies looking for coworking spaces is increasing by the day as they realize that costs need to be controlled and that employees need to be given the best work culture that is available in the industry. The co-working industry is expanding and transforming commercial real estate too, diversifying its markets and bringing in fresh office space ideas. From an employee’s perspective, coworking spaces are a great experience and from the coworking operator’s perspective, the demand for offices will only enhance their prospects. Ultimately, it’s a win-win situation for all.


(The author is Manas Mehrotra, Founder, 315Work Avenue, and the views expressed in this article are his own)

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