In the modern world, there are various types of workspaces commonly found in businesses around the world. Traditional office settings have historically been the most common and accepted model for workspaces since companies started bringing employees into a central location to work. In this setting, employees are assigned an office, a cubicle, or some other space designated for them to work at daily. Working in departments, overseen by department heads, the workload of their particular departments is delegated to the team members in that department. The traditional office is still, by far, the most common of work environments but the rise of coworking has challenged the traditional office’s status quo since the early 2000s.
In 2005 and for the next several years, coworking spaces (also known as flexible workspaces) appealed to young entrepreneurs that wanted to start their own businesses working largely in the field of technology. Many entrepreneurs and tech startup companies saw coworking not only as an affordable alternative to leasing their own traditional office spaces but also as a creative community of diverse minds that sparked collaboration. Coworking allowed individuals and businesses to grow their businesses with the advantage of social networking built into the day-to-day model.
During and after the Great Recession, companies that were restructuring sought the flexible, monthly rentals at coworking spaces that also provided everything needed to do business every day, plus amenities such as complimentary coffee, tea, and water. And they also found a great use for dedicated desks, private offices, and meeting rooms within coworking spaces.
Virtual office plans at coworking spaces presented a great alternative to businesses that didn’t need a place to work from every day but wanted to take advantage of a professional business address and the mail services that virtual office plans offer. Virtual office plan members also benefit from access to meeting rooms at coworking spaces as well as the community of members. Virtual office plans also offer a way to test a particular locale to determine if the area is receptive to a business without the expense of building a new location and risking significant losses.
Just a few years later, many large companies started to see these benefits as something they should also take advantage of through Enterprise level memberships and they started using coworking spaces to bridge the gap between employees commuting into the office and remote workers. As more businesses went remote in 2020, coworking spaces offered the opportunity to work in an office environment without the common distractions of working from home.