Traditional to flexible: What's ahead for the co-working space in 2023?
Mostly driven by the dire need for hybrid and remote business operations during the rampant pandemic, co-working spaces gained massive popularity over traditional offices in recent years. Though the concept of shared working spaces was primarily to cater to the requirements of small businesses, solopreneurs and freelancers, now there has been a major rise in corporates leasing co-working spaces.
With the enhanced acceptance of the players across industries, who now prefer flexibility in business operations, the future of co-working spaces is expected to grow exponentially in 2023. In fact, market researches indicate that the co-working space stock is expected to be over 60 million square feet in the metro and non-metro cities by the end of this year.
Furthermore, the country’s flexible office space market is projected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of around 6 per cent from 2022 to 2027. The market’s growth will mostly be driven by the fact that the co-working spaces significantly help businesses with resolving concerns like office rent, electricity, maintenance, hospitality charges, etc. Hence, we know that co-working spaces can be the best solution for companies to save costs while boosting productivity, enhancing work experience and providing flexibility to employees.
To know more about the rising demands of workspaces, People Matters exclusively spoke to Mr Aditya Mehta, the CEO and co-founder of Akasa Co-working. He shared how the co-working sector in the country will look in 2023.
While the popularity of shared office spaces keeps rising, players in the sector have been putting a renewed focus on promoting sustainable work practices, which will further witness widespread growth in 2023. The expectations of businesses and individuals who are taking the co-working spaces on lease have also been changing.
“There are now more demands for environment-friendly work culture with sustainable amenities and recycled/reclaimed furniture, policies discouraging the use of non-recyclables, paper and unnecessary printing, indoor plants, rooftop gardens and herb planters. These also help members to engage with environmental issues and help to raise awareness,” Mr Mehta told People Matters.
Community-focused and socially-conscious workspaces
The creative and innovative state-of-the-art co-working spaces have become a preferable choice for growing businesses. Apart from being equipped with technology and cutting-edge facilities that are aesthetically lucrative, “they promote and boost collaboration, creativity, idea sharing, mentoring, networking, socialising, and new business opportunities, thereby creating a community of their own” said the CEO of Akasa Co-working.
“In the year 2023, to attract more businesses, the co-working spaces will involve more community activities like social events such as film nights, yoga classes and live gigs, charity and informal networking events,” he added.
As the co-working spaces continue working on providing a 360o degree service to enhance the member’s experience of working, now the sector is also intersecting with the hospitality and tourism sector. “Co-working spaces are becoming the preferred destinations for digital workers these days, even hotels and coffee bars are increasingly accommodating workers in their lobbies, and providing coworking facilities during the days when customer footfall is low,” disclosed Aditya Mehta.
He further added that “in 2023, the co-working spaces will cater to a much wider variety of demands and will address more expectations like accommodating physically-challenged members, providing an environment designed to suit neurodivergent members, and generally providing a welcoming atmosphere for people from all backgrounds, faiths, ethnicities and sexual orientations.”