Largest Coworking Companies
This is a guest post from our partners at Optix, the coworking software that helps operators manage, measure, and grow their business.
2022 was a big year for the coworking industry.
We saw new spaces flood the market, desk occupancy rise to pre-pandemic levels, and “flexible work” solidified itself as the future of the office.
With all of this positive momentum, it’s safe to say that 2023 will be just as big for the coworking industry, if not bigger. To give yourself the greatest chance of success, it’s important to stay ahead of the trends.
In this article, we’ll break down seven of the top coworking trends to look out for in 2023, including how you, as an operator, can stay ahead and capitalize on each one.
The coworking niche movement has really come into its own in 2022. These spaces are designed to serve a specific demographic with amenities and services tailored just for them.
Niche spaces present an opportunity for operators to differentiate themselves from competitors in their area, while serving as a place for like-minded individuals to come together and learn from one another.
Some popular coworking niches we’re seeing in the market include:
As the coworking industry continues to become more competitive, we’re likely to see niche coworking spaces rise in popularity. It’s a natural evolution as more spaces enter the market.
If you’re considering opening up a coworking space that serves a specific niche, make sure you understand the demographic of the location you’re planning to open your space in.
Niche spaces are a great differentiator, but limit your audience. Ensure the niche population is large enough to grow your membership base consistently.
Coworking technology is also evolving with the maturing industry. There are now more solutions on the market than ever before, all with increasingly advanced features and capabilities.
One coworking software trend here to stay is integrated and modular tech stacks. This means utilizing tools able to integrate and work well together, as opposed to operating independently. This can save operators a tremendous amount of time and energy in managing their operations.
We wrote about this evolution in our article for Coworking Insights, where we explained how coworking technology has changed over time:
Coworking software shouldn’t be an all-in-one solution. It should, however, be the central point of focus in your coworking tech stack.
Choose a platform that has integrations with your door access control system, CRM, payment gateway, and more to give you a seamless management experience.
The original coworking space offered desks, a couple of meeting rooms, and maybe a small event space for a networking party after-hours.
Now, coworking spaces offer so much more than that. The idea is for coworking spaces to serve as a community center of sorts, your one-stop -shop where you can get everything you need done in a day.
Examples of these unique services include:
We are likely to see coworking spaces continue to become more and more elaborate, with increasingly unique and differentiated service offerings over time.
Before expanding the services you offer to your community, ensure that the math makes sense for you to do so, and that it will truly be providing value to your community. One way of doing so is by administering a member survey to see what kind of amenities they would benefit from the most.
Coworking spaces are not competing with the traditional office anymore. With the rise of remote workers interested in coworking, they are now competing with the home.
This shift requires coworking spaces to provide value to their members that goes beyond what one would find in a traditional office. They need to provide things that a personal home cannot - like a community.
We’re seeing more and more coworking spaces selling themselves as a space to meet other people, cultivate community, and support their members’ brains and bodies through mental health uplifting amenities. Considering how important community has been to coworking, it’s likely this trend is absolutely here to stay.
When creating your coworking offering, tailor your marketing materials to speak to the community you can provide, and the mental health benefits coworking spaces can have on remote workers.
In turn, this can help you attract and keep this highly sought after demographic.
We’ve been talking about the importance of providing a great member experience for a long time, but now it is more important than ever before.
As a coworking operator, you are in the business of hospitality. You need to think of ways you can provide your members with an outstanding experience beyond just doing the bare minimum.
This becomes even more important as the industry matures and the market becomes more crowded.
How do you provide a great member experience? You can:
Going above and beyond is a requirement now for new coworking spaces. Think about how you can make providing a wonderful member experience part of your brand identity and incorporate it into everything you do as a space. This can help you really stand out above the rest.
Hot desking was the original coworking space offering. The open, communal space was always considered integral to building community - plus it was one of the best ways to maximize earning potential in the space.
The shifting demographic of coworking spaces is now leading to more people looking for something a bit more private. They want individual offices and blocked-off spaces where they can take Zoom calls and work in private if and when they are required to.
These new needs of the coworking member are driving spaces to experiment with and explore different offerings and product mixes. Many spaces are cutting back on their open desk spaces and opting instead for more offices, more phone booths, and more meeting rooms for people to rent out.
If you’re just starting on your buildout or are looking to redesign, consider ways of incorporating more private areas in the space. At the very least, consider ways of ensuring that your space design is flexible and can be modified if and when the needs of your members change.
The advent of new coworking technology is enabling coworking spaces to run autonomously. Coworking spaces can now operate and be fully functional without needing anyone to physically be in the space.
Members are able to do everything they need to do in the space without needing to interact with another person. This includes:
Autonomous coworking spaces allow operators to reduce overhead and operate efficiently on smaller margins. This is beneficial to any business owner, but can be especially useful for those in rural coworking communities who have low profit margins to begin with.
For those interested in creating an autonomous coworking space, it’s important to start with the right tools. We wrote a full guide on how to create an autonomous coworking space that you can check out if you’re interested in getting started.
It is an exciting time to be a part of the coworking industry. It is expanding rapidly with new and exciting opportunities to take advantage of every day.
Of course, it’s important to remember that while there may be many exciting trends you want to try out, at the end of the day, it’s about doing what is best for your members. Consider this before taking any big leaps on where to take your business next.
To learn more about how coworking technology can help you in 2023 and beyond, get in touch with a member of the Optix team today!
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