Viewed through the lens of the traditional business model, a company really hasn’t made it until it is housed in its own private office space. In this age of start-ups and a fully appreciated Internet, however, perhaps that ideal should be revisited. After all, if the functions of staff members can be automated, then the physical real estate required to house them loses its value. In fact, businesses that are more data focused, as well as those that are still in the early stages of growth, should seriously consider the benefits of using shared office space.
The Benefits of Shared Office Space
The first and most obvious benefit of shared office space is low overhead. It can be both costly and time consuming to locate an office space, to furnish it to your liking, and to set up all the utilities necessary to use the space. In a shared space scenario, the offices are furnished, the lights are on, the Internet and telephones are operational, and you are free to focus 100% of your energies on advancing your business. It goes without saying that there are ancillary benefits to these existing furnishings as well. First, there will be a conference room (or conference rooms) available for your meetings with teleconferencing and perhaps even videoconferencing capability. The office will have a legitimate physical mailing address for the receipt of mail and packages, and it will have the hardware necessary for printing, scanning, and copying documents.
Another benefit of shared office space is that it, aside from being connected to the Internet and a printing system, will most likely also have existing dedicated IT infrastructure. Because the space will already be equipped with the necessary technology, a prudent owner will keep this safety net in place to keep the tenants up and running in the event that those devices and equipment should fail.
Also, because shared office space is designed to offer maximum flexibility, it offers shorter lease terms. Most office buildings will not allow you to rent space for a term of less than a year (in truth, most of them prefer three to five year terms), but a shared office will give you the option to rent on a month-to-month basis. This way, if your business should take off and expand rapidly, you will also have the option to move to a bigger and more private space in relatively short order.
Aside from the structural perks, shared office space also provides some human benefits. The ability to work alongside others who may or may not work in the same field provides opportunity for both collaboration and networking. Even if the people working together are unable to utilize each other’s services, chances are pretty good that they will be able to share clients or refer business to one another. Such collaboration makes it easy for members of a shared office community to expand their networks and to attract new clients, new resources, and even new investors.
Shared Office Space: More Capital to Invest in Your Business
At the end of the day, the majority of the perks offered by sharing office space can be felt in your pocket, but they translate into more capital to invest in the business, better access to resources and potential clients, and the ability to hit the ground running as soon as possible. For all of these reasons, shared office space is definitely worth considering.