To be the best in the market you need to offer your clients a facility that considers how you will accommodate many different member types whilst identifying your brand.
One of the key considerations for any coworking design is how you utilise the space to provide state-of-the-art working accommodation. You earn most of your revenue for each desk rented so it is important to achieve maximum density in the office without overcrowding the space.
A typical London office has a ratio of about 8 square metres per person. Most successful coworking spaces will aspire to reduce this figure to about 5 square metres per person; however, buildings are not always designed to offer this kind of flexibility.
In the past coworking has been centred around incubating new businesses but in recent years it had developed to become the hub that houses larger companies. Cellular spaces are getting larger to accommodate more desks and open plan space and breakout spaces are proportionally increasing in size. As agile working is becoming a more popular working method, many coworking practices now feature communal spaces where individuals can rent a single desk in shared touchdown areas. This helps to accommodate smaller companies and makes sure space is not wasted.
Most rentable offices now look to accommodate a minimum office size of about 4-6 people (rather than 2-4) which is an increase from previous years. For these smaller offices it is important to consider whether you will be able to offer them expansion. In order to facilitate growth, you may need to knock down walls so it is important to choose a building methodology that will allow for this.
In line with optimising your space you may have to make some alterations to the facilities to help increase accessibility. The ratio of people per square metre affects fire strategies and the escape routes designed to accommodate that number. Alterations like increasing the width of corridors, including extra staircases or changing the way the building is evacuated can allow you to make more efficient space allocations and increase densities. Larger facilities rely on a staged evacuation system which empties the building floor by floor using a speaker rather than a siren/bell.
Any coworking space will also need to make sure there is disabled access to all areas. As you are offering space to many different members you need to provide greater facilities than that of a private office. Thus, it is crucial to plan for additional access modes to cater for everyone.
When planning your space, you need to consider how your office will add value for your clients. In any successful coworking facility they have some unique feature or element that makes them stand out from the crowd and gives them their own personality.
The space should be a reflection of your company’s brand and personality. This could mean using a palette of materials that you own as your brand identity or an architectural feature that you include in all of your facilities. For example, in every Apple office they design a unique staircase which is the ‘quirk’ that distinguishes their spaces from the rest.
WeWork facilities offer an enhanced community as their niche, with social events, organised networking, summer camps and links between different members in the space. LABS coworking hubs are equipped with advanced technology and offer the opportunity for their clients to connect with professional web developers. Our recent delivery of Ministry of Sound’s new coworking space offers exclusive membership with the opportunity to network with like-minded industry professionals.
We can help you find your new building to ensure you are equipped with the right space to cater for the masses. To make sure you have the best design to accommodate any business, you need to have a thorough plan of how you will achieve this.