Now, more than ever freelancers, entrepreneurs and digital nomads are job descriptions that highlight our ever-changing workforce. Along with the shift in what people do, is a shift in where they do it. Over the years in places like Southeast Asia free-thinkers have moved their location as well as their vision to serviced offices and have become coworkers with other like-minded people.
These are spaces you can occupy quickly and easily. You can generally have 24/7 access so you can accommodate time zones and working patterns from anywhere in the world. They come with a team of friendly management staff, with internet, phone lines, printers, copiers, scanners, refreshment hubs, reception areas offering admin support and much more. What grabs you at first though is the space. The best ones come with modern, classy ergonomic space that epitomizes success, elegance and comfort.
The traditional route for a growing business is to expand into rented offices. They differ to serviced offices in that it often involves lengthy fixed contracts, sourcing all your own furniture, utilities, equipment, cleaning services, etc. It means time and money spent on getting your business running rather than running your business.
With coworking comes core values of community, collaboration and with that, it has statistically been found that productivity increases too.
Why does it work so well? Maybe it’s because it’s a formula we are used to? As youngsters we shared our learning and experiences in schools. Later, universities connected like-minded people to realise their dreams in a shared environment similar to coworking. So, it’s a formula that has worked in other settings for generations.
Well established in many parts of the world as a viable option for freelancers and entrepreneurs, small and large enterprises too are opting for coworking to grow their business.
Co-sharing workspace can even increase your business networking opportunities. Imagine what happens when you are co-sharing with others from various fields of expertise …. you take a break… have a coffee… and start to chat and voila! networking becomes an integral part of your working day. It’s a natural process that is happening throughout the coworking world.
Locations for shared offices are well-considered. Thriving neighbourhoods in exciting cities that have an established infrastructure of quality shops, restaurants, hotels and leisure amenities. Prime city spots that consider logistics too. Public transport links and parking are all considered so even your commute becomes part of the experience.
The benefits of coworking are even more apparent when you step into the space that transforms the concept into the reality.
Walk into the Great Room for example, with offices in Singapore, Bangkok and Hong Kong. The space oozes sumptuousness. It was heralded in 2016 as ‘…born to change the way people work, meet and socialize.’ Woven into its very fabric is the ethos of hospitality which stems from the traditions inspired by the architectural design of ancient buildings. Great rooms of old were the hub of the house in which people socialized, shared food, drink and ideas. And so, it is with the Great Rooms of our Modern Age which too, are inspired by hospitality.
Each site is created by a hospitality designer and evokes feelings of being in one of the best hotel lobbies in the world. They are designed to be the heart of where people meet, greet and exchange and where the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. It’s more than a business meeting over a cup of coffee, it speaks of people who want to get on with achieving their goals and get along with others as they do it.
Singapore’s Great Room offers a range of options for this modern way of ensuring ‘It’s all work… It’s all play’.
Dedicated offices start from 2500 sgd a month. Fully equipped for two people or up to whole floors that accommodate companies of twenty or more, allowing your business and employees to flourish, in a professional, warm environment where you will be proud to invite your clients.
Then there’s the Hot Desk, from 750 sgd a month. Designed in dynamic lounge and work-hall areas, there’s a vibe that speaks of ambition and accomplishment based on sharing.
And if you just want that postcode, there’s the Virtual Office from 75 sgd a month. It’s sure to impress with its prime corporate address and mail-handling service.
Another option with no commitment needed is instant access to your shared office via a Day Pass, coming in at 70 sgd a day, it’s great for when you need a temporary base while staying in the city.
Business Club from 380 sgd a month is on offer too where you can become part of the Great Room community, networking and enjoying other perks even if you aren’t in need of office space.
But they’re not the only ones to brand the concept of communal working. Another giant in the arena is Common Ground, a fruitful enterprise of serviced offices and coworking space with roots, to date, in Malaysia, Philippines and Thailand, attracting business leaders, entrepreneurs, digital nomads, developers and designers to name but a few.
In Malaysia, their success story is exemplified in Common Ground Kuala Lumpur which has spread out over the city in no less than ten locations. In a city where business is booming there is a hive of activity at Common Ground. They are thriving on the motto of ‘Ambition lives here’, offering an elegant space to convene and work, so supporting fast-growing companies to take their business to the next level without all the overheads the conventional route might entail.
Prices vary by location, but Hot Desks start from around 499 MYR a month and Fixed Desks from 699 MYR per month which allows you a dedicated desk in the open space. Private offices are designed for small to medium-sized companies and satellite teams who want a bit more privacy and they start off at 899 MYR per seat per month.
So, when we were taught as children that it was good to share maybe we should have followed through in our adult work-life and become an ambassador for sharing. After all, it has its advantages!