Coworking has been taking the world by storm as the most popular way to work. So how do you find a place that is going to work for you?
Here are 10 questions you need to ask.
CAN I VISIT?
Every coworking space has it’s own personality and atmosphere. Some are set up like inner city offices with carpets, glass and chrome, while others, such as The Creative Fringe, may be converted warehouses, with a funky, inspiring vibe. It’s always good to find out if you can visit the space before making a decision. Like anything, you will get a gut feel if it is right for you.
CAN I TRY BEFORE I BUY?
Now that you have seen the space, ask if you can work in the space for a day. This will give you a chance to try it out and make sure that it’s the kind of space that you can effectively work in. Most coworking spaces have an open-plan layout, so if you need somewhere quiet, find out if there are areas to suit your needs on different days. Many spaces also offer meeting room access as part of their desk rental, check out these spaces as they are handy to have if you need to meet with clients.
WHO COWORKS IN THE SPACE?
This is probably the most important question. Who frequents the space will have a large baring on the atmosphere and culture within. Often co-working spaces are designed to cater to a particular industry – startup techs, professionals, not for profits or creatives. The Creative Fringe for example, caters to those who like to work creatively – regardless of their occupation. These spaces foster opportunities for individuals to connect with each other, share knowledge and demonstrate expertise.
Having like-minded people around you who can help grow your network or business is always beneficial in a coworking space. More than anything else, it’s the community environment that makes these co-working spaces flourish.
WHAT IS INCLUDED IN THE (HOT DESK) RENTAL?
Most coworking spaces are about more than just the desk you sit at. At The Creative Fringe you get free access to WiFi, tea and coffee facilities, meeting rooms, breakout areas and of course the inspiring community. Many spaces will also offer shower facilities, after hours access and printing services. It’s always good to ask before hand what is included as there may be addition services that incur an additional cost – such as computer screen hire, lockers or a postal service.
HOW NOISY IS IT?
Some coworking spaces are quiet and serene while others are vibey with music and a bit more activity. There is no right or wrong here. How you want to work is up to you, but with most spaces you can move around and find an area that fits best – after all, you are there to get work done.
DO YOU HAVE TO SIGN A CONTRACT?
Just like The Creative Fringe, most coworking spaces are flexible with their tenancy allowing coworkers the opportunity to rent space on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis. The Creative Fringe also has the facility to house ‘residents’. These are tenants who commit to a years lease, get allocated a larger ‘office space’ and get promoted on our website. This is subject to availability and compatibility.
WHAT ARE THE WORKING HOURS?
All coworking spaces are different, so find out what their hours of operation are. While some might be set office hours, others may have a swipe card 24/7 access facility. Usually the privilege of working ridiculous hours also comes with a slightly higher cost, but it allows for additional flexibility in how and when you like to work.
PUBLIC TRANSPORT AND PARKING?
Getting to work is obviously an important aspect of a coworking space. Ask if the location is close to public transport, of if you are working closer to home, find out how close it might be to ride a bike or walk. For those driving, you may be more interested to find out if there is parking available and whether you have to pay for it.
WHAT IS CLOSE BY?
Find out what is close to your preferred coworking space. Perhaps a cafe so that you can grab a coffee on the way to work, or some lunch. Maybe you like to work out so a gym or nearby park is important to you. If you have time to shop, you may like to be close to a supermarket or shopping centre.
WHAT EVENTS/NETWORKING IS AVAILABLE?
Many coworking spaces host events, workshops and events to help inspire their coworkers and develop a stronger more connected community. The Creative Fringe hosts a monthly Fringe Connections event where our community comes together to enjoy pizza, a few drinks and an inspiring speaker. We also act as a venue / maker space for creative facilitators running workshops such as mosaics, resin decor items, floristry, interior design, coaching and more. If you would would like host a workshop at The Creative Fringe, get in touch today!
Are you ready to try coworking?