Will COVID-19 Mark The End Of Coworking As We Know It?


There has been a lot of talk that from now on, people will increasingly work remotely, which is fantastic news for the flexible workplace industry, particularly given that many work from home and probably struggle with it because of families, babies, roommates, and pets in the house. If the storm has passed, people who are able to start working remotely will probably want to leave the house and will turn to coworking spaces and other flexible workspace solutions. But here's the thing: people can not be as eager to work in working spaces, where they're in close touch with others, and need to share desk space. Fear is a strong force and it will take time for people to return to 'normal' comfortably. This is the case with everything, from kissing and embracing as a greeting, driving, dining out, going to the gym, the cinema, and sharing a workspace.

What does this mean for the flexible workspace industry?

The coronavirus epidemic has totally shaken our sense of security, with behaviors that we once took for common now under close scrutiny. While people will be ready to leave the house once quarantines are over, the workplace will need to be re-imagined to suit the occupier’s' new needs and demands. So, versatile workspace providers are likely to see an increase in memberships or dedicated desks in private offices.

What can operators do?

Flexible workspace operators willing to survive the storm financially can need to make some improvements to their workspace locations. This would be the case primarily for coworking operators who have concentrated heavily on providing members shared workplace areas.

“Operators will likely need to allocate at least 80% of their space to private offices,” real estate expert Giovanni Palavicini commented during a quick call with Allwork.Space.

It may be appropriate to turn large meeting rooms into smaller spaces or even private workstations. We are all part of a global project which is currently evaluating the feasibility of remote working. As more organizations adopt digital platforms to communicate and collaborate, the physical spaces that historically facilitated such activities that become much less popular – but not entirely common. This will disrupt many business practices, from regular on-site meetings to business travel.

The good news for operators is that as opposed to public spaces, private offices tend to be a steadier and stronger source of revenue. More significantly, in the future people would possibly be much more likely to pay for individual space than they were in the past.

This is not the end of community, though. 

Quite the contrary, culture should remain a cornerstone in every place of work. If there is one thing the COVID-19 pandemic has taught us, it's that even though we're physically apart, we can be together. More significantly, people are now more conscious than ever of the importance of human contact and support. Once we step into a post-pandemic environment, it's possible that culture will take center stage once individuals and organizations find ways to help each other.

The times they are a-changin’

Owing to the pandemic the climate has changed and its effects will be long-lasting. But if there is light at the end of the tunnel, we will all have to make adjustments to adapt to the current post-pandemic reality. At the very heart has been changed the way we shop, work, move, and communicate with each other. Tomorrow's workplace is one that will adapt to the aftermath of this pandemic. We can't say for sure what these are going to be, but private offices are likely to get a comeback.

Victory Workspace Walnut Creek Coworking Space
By JeffreymendelImage Courtesy of Jeffrey Nash - Own work, CC BY 3.0, Link

Are You Ready to Find Your New Coworking Space? 

Victory Workspace has been serving professionals in the Walnut Creek, California area for over ten years, and even after the Covid 19 Shelter in Place is over we will be here for you. We offer a large variety of coworking spaces, short term office rentals, meeting rooms and a welcoming event space with plenty of free parking for you or your guests.  All that while providing our clients with daily opportunities to network with other business-minded professionals just like you! To learn more, set up your free tour or inquire about which one of services might be right for you, reach out to one of our amazing Community Guides at Victory Workspace for more information.