Coworking 101: What To Check Before Renting Coworking Space
Renting coworking space is a great option for any business. These spaces offer greater affordability, capability, design, and agility. They’re quick to scale up as your business grows, and they offer short-term leases.
But to get the most out of your coworking space, you need to make sure it’s right for you. To help, we put together this guide on what to check before renting coworking space.
It’s the first rule of real estate, whether you’re buying or renting. The right location is a top priority. Here are a few factors to consider when picking the location of your coworking space:
A simple commute makes your life easier. If you’re working alone or with a small team, you can save a lot of headache by reducing the length of the commute. Stacking long hours on top of a long commute doesn’t do anyone any favours.
But it’s not just about your commute. You want to make sure your coworking space is in an easily accessible area. Central locations, road access, and TTC accessibility ensure that you, your coworkers, and your clients can get to your space without hassle.
A good location can do a lot to enhance your professional image. In Toronto, the Financial District is one of the most prestigious locations for an office. The lower costs of renting coworking space make it possible to get office space in the most desirable locations. This enhances your professional image as you’re surrounded by only top tier businesses.
Internet, laptop, and coffee. Often, people quote these as the base requirements for a workspace. But to function properly as a business, you need a whole lot more.
When you compare coworking spaces, take a look at their amenities. The different services, capabilities, and equipment affect your own capabilities and agility.
As much as we’re moving into a more paperless world, businesses still need tools like printers, scanners, and copiers. As well, you can improve your own work experience and create a better atmosphere for employees with premium amenities like:
Private phone booths
As well, the best coworking spaces in Toronto offer administrative and support services. From bookkeeping to hospitality to IT support, a good coworking office gives you access to all the support of an enterprise-level business.
Costs & Value
Simply put, coworking spaces offer the best bang for your buck when it comes to renting office space in Toronto. When you choose coworking, you’re already making a smart, budget-conscious decision. So instead of just trying to go all out on getting the lowest price, look for the best deal.
Getting the best value should be your goal when comparing spaces. Consider not only the cost but what you’re getting for your money. Paying a little more or a little less is easily outweighed by the capabilities, comforts, or convenience of a superior space.
That being said, it’s important to make sure you stay within your budget and keep an eye on what services you need most.
For example, a new company with fewer needs and shallower pockets can always opt for a virtual office. Although a virtual office doesn’t give you a dedicated desk, you do have access to the lounge where you can work, network and collaborate. All the while, you have access to services on-demand as needed.
One of the big selling points of a coworking office is the open, collaborative atmosphere. But if you need a little more privacy, this can be a bit of a drawback. Fortunately, some coworking spaces have some simple solutions.
Renting a private office in a coworking space offers the privacy you need. With this option, you still get all the benefits of an open office without sacrificing your privacy.
If you only need occasional privacy, many open offices already have good solutions. Meeting room rentals give you a private space to meet clients. And phonebooths are a simple solution for private calls.
On average, most people spend about a 1/3rd of their lives at work. For business owners, this is number is often higher, so it’s worthwhile making sure you have all the right comforts. A well-designed, open space can add to your enjoyment and appreciation of an office – as well as boosting your professional appearance.
Good lighting is essential in an office. It improves mood, focus, and it’s good for your eyes. The best option is natural lighting, so be on the lookout for well-lit spaces with big windows.
Ergonomics & Furnishings
A furnished office has a couple of key benefits. For one, it saves you money since all the furnishing costs are already in place. For another, it improves the overall look and feel of the office. It helps maintain the professional design of the office, making it a more impressive space.
Ergonomic chairs, desks, and accessories also add to the work experience. Not only do they make you and your employees more comfortable, but they’re also better for health. For example, good back support reduces the number of visits to chiropractors and physiotherapists. As a result, you pay less for health insurance and take the loss of fewer sick days.
Meeting space rentals are now one of the most in-demand services of Toronto coworking spaces. The increase in demand means the best meeting rooms have more scarce availability.
Fortunately, coworking spaces with meeting spaces often give preferred booking availability and rates to those using their space. That makes it easy for you to book professional, technologically advanced, fully capable meeting rooms.
When considering your coworking space, consider the availability, quality, and capabilities of their rental meeting spaces.
Book A Tour of Toronto Coworking Space
Are you looking to rent coworking space in Toronto’s most desirable downtown locations? The Professional Center offers a wide range of options and support for coworking in the Financial District.
Open vs Private Office Space: Which is Best for My Business?
The last decade has given rise to the Googleization of offices. A focus on collaboration and freeform thought has lead to companies shifting to the open office format. But are open offices better than private? It depends on your business & needs.
In this article, we weigh the pros and cons of each.
Open Office Space
The coworking explosion saw a dramatic shift towards open office spaces in all sorts of businesses. Cubicle walls melted away, opening up to create collaborative workspaces.
It’s a phenomenon that gained popularity at new age giants like Google and Facebook. Companies were quick to adopt, in hopes of capturing some of the same success.
Now we’re a few years into mainstream open office spaces and we’re taking an objective look at their pros and cons:
Open Office Pros
Collaboration is the most touted benefit of the open office. Putting people of different levels and functions into one space opens up the dialogue and offers more perspectives. The result is more harmonious, agile thoughts and ideas. As well, it reduces miscommunication and streamlines ideation.
The immediacy and accessibility that an office space provides to team members make it ideal for collaboration.
For companies in a state of anticipated or unsure growth, open office space rentals are ideal. These spaces are dynamic and adaptable. It’s easy to rearrange space and/or add desks. This allows for rapid growth if you need to scale up the workforce quickly.
Growing businesses save time and money on having to look for new offices.
Open offices are the most economical way to set up your office. It’s what has made them a staple of the Toronto coworking landscape. Cubicles, private, and individual offices take up more space and cost more to set up. On average, an open office space takes up less than 1/3rd of the space of a traditional office.
Businesses of all sizes are focusing on becoming leaner and more productive. An open office provides the perfect balance between quality and price point that fits many modern companies.
Open Office Cons
Interruptions & Distractions
The ease of collaboration can cut both ways. While it’s easy for people to communicate and discuss ideas, it’s just as easy to distract each other. According to studies by the University of California, Irvine, distractions happen 29% more often in open offices.
Approaches can be taken to mitigate distractions. Setting time for socialization can help reduce distractions throughout the day. Allowing for flex work, so employees can work from home when they need distraction-free work days, can help. As well, wearing headphones can help keep employees plugged into their own work, so they are interrupted less often while still being readily available.
Lack of Privacy
Constant collaboration isn’t for everyone. Some people, especially those from a more old school background or mentality, prefer private office space. For them, the four walls of an office aren’t restrictive, they’re a comfort. Privacy can offer freedom from distraction and makes your workspace feel like your own.
Lack of Permanency
While the agility of renting open office space is generally a benefit, there is a flipside. The whole, “move fast and break things,” mentality comes with a lack of permanency. While it’s proven to be a formula for success and rapid growth for many businesses, it’s not for everyone.
Agility allows you to push boundaries and scale fast, but more permanent workspace can provide a sense of comfort. It’s important to find the balance that meets your company’s needs and culture.
Allowing workers to personalize their desk space with plants, photos, and knickknacks can help them feel like their space is their own. As well, minimize unnecessary shuffling around of space.
Private Office Space
Private offices are the more traditional approach. Employees show up in their private offices and it’s their home for the day. The four walls of their cubicle or office are familiar and comfortable. In the wake of the open office boom, many companies are partially shifting back to private offices. They’re often used now for management roles or specialized jobs.
Private Office Pros
One of the most obvious benefits of a private office is privacy. Workers can complete professional or personal matters in their own space. It also makes it easier to deal with sensitive matters such as legal, HR, or financials without alerting or involving the whole team.
Often, salespeople who are on frequent calls will prefer a private office. The calls are less of a distraction to those around them, and they can have the comfort of a private call.
Another benefit of a private office is the lack of interruptions. People are less likely to disrupt or interrupt you while in a private space. This makes it easier to focus on your own work and reduces distractions.
In addition to interruptions, the noise of an open office can be disrupting. 58% of high-performance employees desire a quieter workspace. A private office offers more control over sound.
The lack of interruptions helps individuals to be more productive throughout their day. Employees can accomplish their individual tasks faster and with high-quality. Their interactions are more streamlined, usually occurring on their own terms.
Private Office Cons
Although a private office improves individual productivity, it can reduce team productivity. Where there are fewer interruptions, there are also fewer opportunities for communication and collaboration.
The result is less innovation at the expense of individual productivity. Companies need to decide which is more important to them in deciding between open and private offices.
Having the privacy of your own office can be nice and comfortable. But it’s also isolating. Spending days locked away alone in your own office can take a personal toll. It reduces your participation in company culture and can take away from workplace wellness and job satisfaction.
If working with private offices, be sure to schedule social time and try to pair break times with other employees. Solutions like Steve Jobs’ walking meetings can help to engage coworkers and break up the mundanity of spending all day cooped up in an office.
For all the comforts that come along with a private office, there is a definite cost. They take up more space, they cost more to put together, and moving in and out of spaces is more time-consuming and expensive than an open office.
They can have other cost benefits, however. For example, employers can use a private office as an incentive during promotions rather than just giving raises.
Private Office in a Coworking Space
A private office in a coworking space is another option that provides a healthy balance between the pros and cons of open and private offices. These are available for individual offices or team offices. They offer the best of both worlds, combining the privacy of your own office with the collaboration of an open office.
These offer the best value for individuals or small teams who are looking to rent private offices. They come at a lower cost than renting traditional business space while having all the amenities of a large company.
Private Office & Open Office Office Space for Rent in Toronto
Whether your company’s needs are best met by renting private or open office space, quality matters. Our Toronto coworking spaces are top quality. We have prime Financial District real estate, professional design, and all the technology and amenities a modern office needs.
Our diverse range of open and private office space can fit the needs of any size or type of business.
Book a tour today and discover the benefits of coworking space.
Not Just Startups: Enterprises Are Moving Into Toronto Coworking Spaces
In the initial explosion of coworking, spaces were rented by students, startups, and freelancers. The goal was to move in, grow, and move into your own space. But now, just a few years later, it’s not just startups in Toronto coworking spaces.
It’s a popular coworking myth that these spaces are just for small companies. In reality, the big guys are moving into shared offices at a rapid pace. Established companies and major enterprises are seeing the benefits of coworking and jumping on board.
In this article, we explore why banks and enterprises are searching for coworking space in Toronto.
Why Enterprise Companies Are Moving Into Coworking Spaces
Cost & Availability of Renting Business Space
Finding office space in Toronto is a challenge for any size of business. Market research shows that Toronto once again has the lowest vacancy rate (1.6%) of the top 10 North American Central Business Districts.
The low vacancy means there’s not a lot of availability in business space for rent. It’s especially challenging for large companies who need more space. It’s even harder to be pickier about the location.
Even if the ideal space is available, low-vacancy and high-demand mean the costs are high. Anyone who lives here already knows, Toronto is not a renter-friendly market. Higher rents mean lower profits.
Coworking spaces in Toronto allow enterprise companies to find space at more reasonable prices.
Companies that already have their own space are turning to coworking spaces for satellite offices. For companies already in the city, coworking spaces offer low-cost office space for staff who don’t need to be in the main office.
Marketing teams, web development, and accounting departments are just some examples of staff that are often in coworking satellite offices.
For companies based outside of Toronto, using coworking space for satellite offices is a great option. They allow companies to enter or test a new market faster, with a lower cost and less commitment.
Overflow & Rapid (or temporary) Expansion
In the modern world, things move fast. As companies often need to scale up rapidly, it’s not uncommon to see offices overflow. With the scarcity of business space for rent managing overflow and expansion is too slow and expensive via the traditional approach.
Coworking spaces resolve this issue. They provide ready availability, often in close proximity to the main office. It’s a much more agile option, allowing businesses to move in quickly.
They’re also a great option for temporary expansions since contracts are much shorter term than traditional office rentals.
Meeting Rooms & Amenities
High-quality meeting room rentals are in demand for businesses of all sizes. Even offices with their own meeting spaces are seeking out rentals.
The meeting rooms in coworking spaces are available in all sorts of sizes, fitting for meetings from 4 to 20 people. This allows the flexibility to rent a space that is more fitting to the size of your meeting.
They are also technologically advanced with presentation screens and whiteboards. Shared office meeting rooms boast a series of amenities that may not be found in a company’s own office. The designs and layouts also make them much more appealing alternatives to hotel meeting rooms.
As well, many large companies often find that their own meeting rooms are overbooked. Rentals allow more flexibility, so they don’t need to schedule around in-office availability.
Companies that use these rentals frequently will often sign up for coworking spaces, to take advantage of better rental rates. As well as access to their other amenities.
It’s hard enough finding business space for rent in Toronto. But locking down office space in the most desirable districts is even more challenging. A business’ location has a big impact on its image and convenience. Banks, for instance, want space in the financial district, where most meetings happen.
Coworking spaces in the financial district make it easier to rent business space in a competitive area. The spaces are well-designed and on high floors. Although they’re an affordable option, they don’t look cheap. Instead, they’re a good way to show that your company is modern, professional, and agile.
Renting office space in Toronto often means signing a 5 to 10-year lease. For many businesses that’s a long commitment. Especially for companies that are unsure of their growth needs. Will they still need this space in 5 years? Can this space fulfill their needs after 10 years of growth?
Coworking spaces keep companies more agile, with the ability to sign 6-month or 1-year leases. That means they can scale up or down as needed, always matching their current needs. More flexible lease terms take the guesswork out of your rental needs.
Although coworking spaces are professional, they break away from the mould of traditional offices. Their collaborative design and creative atmosphere promote productivity and workplace satisfaction.
These spaces attract better talent and maintain an engaged, healthy workforce. As well, they’ve been shown to improve workplace wellness by increasing work satisfaction.
Really Well-Designed Space
For any company, big or small, image is important. As such, a well-designed space says volumes about your business. Coworking offices prioritize design to boost your business’ productivity and professional image.
They are already furnished so companies move into a ready-to-use space and don’t need to worry about buying furniture or hiring designers.
For meeting rentals or daily office use, the professional design of shared office spaces makes them ideal for any business.
Book a Tour of Toronto Coworking Spaces
Although coworking offers better availability for Toronto office space, the best locations are filling up fast. Book a tour today and discover the benefits of coworking in Toronto.