Office Amenities that Work

office lounge with seating area, kitchen and beverages
TPC’s exclusive business lounge

Not your Parents’ Office Amenities

Office amenities used to be viewed almost exclusively within the context of providing for the health and safety of a company’s employees. Identifying, supplying and maintaining workplace amenities was primarily a function of being compliant with the applicable codes. But amenities have evolved. They now include a spectrum of tools integral to elevating company culture and driving greater worker engagement.

Millennials and Gen Xers, the cohorts that dominate today’s workforce, have dramatically changed how work is delivered. How the physical workspace should look, and more critically, function, has evolved in tandem with this seismic shift in how work gets done. Workplaces now have to accommodate the specialized needs of an infinitely mobile workforce while promoting a culture of connection, inclusivity, and agility.

The explosion in the percentage of freelancers/independent workers, the accompanying heightened reliance on technology, increased demand for collaborative opportunities, and fluid working hours — have all become the stuff of days. Being able to access a comprehensive suite of office amenities is an effective way to help workers thrive.

The Amenities on the Rise

Desired amenities vary considerably workplace to workplace but generally speaking, those that simplify workers’ lives are the most valued. Providing workers with tailored amenities can motivate greater employee/worker engagement while reducing overall stress. This, in turn, clears the path for increased creativity, improved productivity, and increased profitability.

As every workplace is unique, there is no single formula as to what amenities should be made available but research reveals the most impactful are those that directly address a business’s/workers’ expertise when offered in tandem with a variety of workspaces.

Some amenities deemed to help attract and retain talent include:

 Concierge Services

Connected 24/7 and facing increasing workloads, millennials/GenXers work long hours which encroaches on their personal time. A recent Manpower Group study revealed 73% of millennials worldwide, worked 40+ hours a week and almost a quarter worked 50+. Hospitality-like services that workers can access to complete their personal tasks are particularly well received.

These services include everything from picking up dry cleaning to booking reservations, to delivering groceries. For example, employees at Deloitte’s Edge in Amsterdam, “the smartest building in the world”, enjoy a truly future-is-now workplace environment. If employees get hungry at the end of a long day, through an app that bestows a variety of services, they can order the ingredients of a meal in the appropriate proportions. At the end of the day, a paper bag with the exact amount of ingredients is waiting for them. They take it home, and within 10 minutes they can have a perfectly cooked meal.

 Technology

A seamless slate of technology-related amenities, including enhancements such as the fastest commercial internet, hardware upgrades and wireless charging, along with access to knowledgeable IT support, is critical to ensuring the success of workers/companies. Technology allows for choice and flexibility which are high priorities for today’s workers. In particular, millennials and Gen Z benefit most from a tech-forward workplace. Building on their extensive use of consumer-oriented software (i.e. Instagram/Snapchat), the availability of enterprise technology that incorporates consumer-facing tech has been shown to stimulate productivity increases.

Sustainability

The Deloitte 2016 Millennial survey revealed that millennials expect businesses to focus less on profits and more on people, products, and cultivating an overarching purpose. They definitely favour workplaces that are designed to have a low environmental and negative social impact. Beyond the positive environmental return, investing in sustainability programs is an excellent method to support workers’ desire for meaningful work. As millennials and Gen Z are becoming more and more influential as an employee demographic and as consumers, they are driving demand for sustainability and purpose in the workplace and their personal lives.

Amenities that facilitate this awareness are not only welcome but championed by this cohort. And it doesn’t have to be a direct correlation. The Deloitte grocery program mentioned above is one way of not only saving time and enjoying nutritious food, but also of producing practically zero waste.

 Accessible Food Options

According to Nielsen research, millennials and Gen Z prioritize healthy foods more so than other cohorts and are willing to pay a premium for it. Easy access to a variety of food options as well as the amenities to prepare, store and enjoy food within or in close proximity to the workplace is key in keeping employees in good health, good spirits and ultimately productive. And coffee…they must have good coffee!

 Purpose-driven Events

More so than older generations, millennials and Gen Z highly value meaningful work and products that align with their values. Hence, a purpose-driven workplace positively impacts the employee/worker experience by magnifying the impact of one’s work and increasing employee satisfaction. Events that inspire connections add meaning to both work and life as they motivate engagement with the greater community. LinkedIn’s Purpose at Work Global Report, stated 73% of professionals who identify as purpose-driven are satisfied with their jobs.

 Wellness Initiatives

Essentially workplace wellness programs support healthy behaviours so as to improve health outcomes for workers. A holistic approach to workplace wellness integrates physical wellness, emotional wellness, mental wellness, and even sometimes spiritual wellness. Activities can include undertaking such as health education and coaching, weight management programs, medical screenings, on-site fitness programs and much more. Research indicates wellness programs not only successfully support healthy behaviours, but they are also cost-effective.

Amenities and programs that facilitate these healthy activities from quiet rooms to purpose-built zones that include access to games, fitness equipment, privacy, nature, as well as skill-sharing are most popular.

Coworking Leading the Way

Coworking spaces offer incredible opportunities for independent workers, small start-ups and even larger established corporate entities to work ‘outside the box’ while cultivating inspiration and improving productivity.

Well before their traditional-office counterparts, coworking spaces recognized the upcoming workforce had very different expectations of what they needed in a workplace. Seeing an opportunity, coworking spaces have been at the forefront of the growing trend whereby office amenities are viewed less as perks and more as critical tools necessary for workers to facilitate a seamless work-life integration.


As providing a slate of effective amenities requires an investment from both a facility’s management and its tenants, savvy workplaces prioritize those that most improve the workplace experience and deliver the greatest performance boost. Bottom line …Office amenities are truly transforming workplaces!

If you are looking for an office space that delivers on a range of amenities, consider TPC. Whether you’re just starting a business or expanding into new markets, TPC’s meticulously planned workspaces are the ideal choice for today’s dynamic professionals. Book your tour or contact us today.

 

Coworking vs. Traditional Office Space

 

team in open office setting

Coworking vs. traditional office space. Which one is right for you?

In today’s office rental market, people have more choices than ever when it comes to finding a home for their business. Along with more choices, there’s an increased awareness among businesses of all sizes of alternative ways to occupy office space. Even large companies like Amazon and Google are diverting some of their offices from traditional leased buildings to flexible workspace. This has resulted in an increase in requests for 10-plus desks which now make up of approximately one-fifth of the total office market demand.

Coworking vs. traditional office space – weighing the pros and cons

For start-ups and established businesses alike, making decisions about office space is no easy task. There are so many options to consider and factors to weigh. Before you begin your search for your enterprise’s home base, it’s critical to determine what you’re looking for: Are you going to go with a coworking space or a traditional office? Let’s consider the top merits – and drawbacks – of each.


Coworking

Contrary to what some people may still think, coworking is not just a group office with ping pong tables, bean bag chairs and an unlimited supply of snacks. Instead, it is now an umbrella term used to describe a flexible work environment, whether it’s a dedicated desk in a communal space or a private serviced office within a shared office location.

PROS: 

Flexibility

One of the most important benefits of coworking is its flexibility as compared to traditional offices.

You don’t have to commit to a long-term lease and everything – including utilities, phone line, internet, postal service and reception – is normally covered in your fee. Flexible lease options provide a less rigid form of tenure such as the ability to use the space on a short-term basis and to grow or shrink your physical space requirements as needed. Larger companies or established clients can also negotiate longer-term leases – providing the ultimate balance of stability and cost-effectiveness. In short, coworking (ironically) can potentially offer a more tailor-made solution when it comes to lease and space requirements.

Move-in ready

You can occupy your fully-equipped space right away. It comes with furnishings, internet and phone connections, plus a variety of amenities and on-demand meeting space arrangements.

Chances to network and collaborate

Shared spaces mean you have the opportunity to join forces with people with complementary skills and/or people who require your skills.

CONS: 

It may not be your space alone

Coworking locations are normally filled with a range of clientele, from startups to multinationals. This means the coworking space cannot be branded by any one client. However, while most coworking locations are shared, more and more it’s possible for one organization to occupy the whole premises. These “enterprise tenant” arrangements allow companies to reap the many benefits of coworking without sacrificing their autonomy and unique company brand and culture.

More expensive than working from home: For the solopreneur or small business, nothing beats the cost-effectiveness of working from home. Moving to a coworking location may cost more, but you’ll likely be way more productive!

 

Traditional offices

When you lease or buy a traditional office, it’s your own space, to be used exclusively for your business. If you’re renting the office, you usually have to commit to a term of at least five years and enter into a contract with the owner of the premises. Building out and furnishing the offices is also your responsibility.

PROS: 

Branding and corporate culture: The entire office is yours and can reflect your brand and your corporate culture. You can design your space to accommodate the unique needs and values of your company.

Privacy: Because you aren’t sharing the space, it may be easier to schedule private meetings. You will also have better overall control of allotment of designated areas for privacy.

CONS: 

Less flexibility: Leasing a traditional office usually represents a long-term commitment.

Upfront costs: When you lease a traditional office, you will have to furnish and equip your space. This may also include expensive investments like building out amenities and meeting rooms.

The need for dedicated office management: You’ll have to take on the task of managing the office.

Fewer opportunities to network and collaborate: You have less of a chance of connecting with people from other companies or industries.

After you’ve thought about these pros and cons, remember to take a step back and look at the big picture. Make sure the physical space you choose reflects the image you want to project for your clients, potential employees and partners, and the type of business you’re in.

The Professional Centre (TPC) is a premium shared office space in Toronto’s Financial District. Our spaces are fully equipped with meeting rooms and services to meet the needs of any business. Book a tour today and discover the TPC difference!

Is Coworking Dead?

Part 1 – Top Three Questions about Coworking

Curious about coworking? Interested in learning more about its history or what it is, exactly? Chances are, you’ll turn to Google for the answers to your coworking-related questions (or, you could simply read our helpful blog posts ;)).

Turns out, “Is coworking dead?” is the most-asked question on the Internet today about coworking.

With over 63,000 searches per second conducted on Google alone on any given day, the Internet’s search tools have become a window on the world’s collective thirst for knowledge – the good, the bad, the useful and the downright bizarre.

In fact, Google has accumulated so much data based on users’ search terms that it can even predict your question. The queries displayed through this “autocomplete” function reflect the search activity of all web users and the content of web pages that Google has indexed over time – generating a host of hilarious memes and head-scratching “autocomplete fail” websites.

That said, much insight can be gleaned from uncovering Internet users’ most popular questions about a given subject – such as coworking.

In this series of articles, we look at the top three “Is coworking ….?” queries as determined by answerthepublic.com and Google’s Keyword Planner – two particularly useful tools to leverage when trying to gauge the public’s take and interest on a particular subject.

Let’s start with the number one hit: Is coworking dead?

Coworking Dead? Nothing could be further from the truth.

If anything, coworking, shared offices and flex spaces – arrangements where small businesses, freelancers, startups and remote workers can rent a desk or a furnished private office with all the amenities of a professional workplace – seem to be popping up everywhere. In fact, the demand for this type of workplace is growing by the day.

It’s predicted that the square footage allocated to flexible or coworking use will grow to 10-20% of total U.S. leased space in 2030 and 30% globally in corporate real estate portfolios.

In fact, the need for more office space flexibility is driving a structural shift in the leasing market. While traditional office uses are shrinking, flexible spaces (coworking) are growing their share:

 

Office demand is shifting to more flexible models and away from traditional uses

 

Hang on – what about WeWork?

Some of the chatter about coworking’s potential demise may stem from recent events surrounding WeWork, one of the first and perhaps the best-known shared workspace company. After an impressive run of growth and expansion, much of it financed by Japan-based Softbank Group Corp., WeWork faced some serious difficulties in 2019, including a cancelled IPO and the resignation of its CEO and co-founder, Adam Neumann.

Though the future of this particular company may be uncertain, it is not representative of the industry as a whole. Overall, WeWork has had a rather positive influence on the coworking phenomenon, introducing millions of people worldwide to shared workspaces – individuals who may not have otherwise considered coworking as an option.

Everything is changing.

The world of work continues to evolve at a steady pace, setting the stage for increased growth and adoption of the coworking business model.

With Canadian jobless rates hovering below 6 percent, and candidates essentially demanding flexible work arrangements, coworking has become an excellent strategy for both attracting and retaining highly-desirable talent. Significantly, coworking also facilitates a company’s ability to seamlessly hire top talent in different locations without securing dedicated office space, which drives company growth and profit.

83% of workers feel that flexibility is a factor when choosing between similar job offers.

70% of workers feel that choice of work environment plays a key role in evaluating work opportunities.

75% of companies are introducing flexible working in order to reduce staff commute times.

Coworking has become the preferred workplace for a workforce that values agility and demands an enhanced work experience. By the end of 2018, approximately 1.7 million people worldwide had utilized a coworking space. As traditional commercial real estate options — with their inflexible leasing arrangements and sky-high rents — are proving ill-suited to meet the shifting demands of today’s working community, coworking is a trend that is definitely forecast to grow:

30% MARKET SHARE

By 2030, project 30% of corporate real estate portfolios (globally) will be coworking or flexible space.

23% ANNUAL GROWTH

Flexible workspace has grown at an annual rate of 23% since 2010 and is now the primary growth driver in the U.S. office market.

29.4% OF NEW LEASES

Flexible workspace accounted for 18.1 million square feet, or 29.4 percent of new space that was leased in the United States over the past two years.

As workers’ expectations change and business realities underline the need for alternatives to traditional office space, employers are responding by becoming more flexible and embracing more innovation. This includes adopting coworking as a win-win solution.

Is coworking dead? Just the opposite. Coworking is alive and well, and all signs indicate it is here to stay.


 

An early adopter of shared workspaces, Toronto continues to be a fast-growing coworking hub. The Professional Centre (TPC) has been leading the way with flex office space options in the heart of the city’s financial district since 1987. Book a tour today to check out our premium coworking space where more is standard.

 

 

Stats from global research by Deskmag and Deskwanted and JLL

 

 

The Rise of Luxury Coworking Spaces

For years, coworking spaces have had a reputation for being a no-frills option. They were places where startups, freelancers and sole practitioners could get basic office space and services at an affordable price. But today, the shared-office landscape is evolving. Higher expectations, driven by a shifting corporate culture and a dynamic, discerning workforce, have significantly increased demand for specialized and luxury coworking spaces.

This new brand of high-end coworking provides the best of both worlds. It offers the high design, functionality and professionalism of a private office while leveraging the efficiency and cost-effectiveness of traditional coworking.

In fact, the rise of luxury coworking spaces has created an opportunity not only for entrepreneurs and small businesses looking for cost savings but also for large multi-national firms requiring premium office space for satellite offices and remote workers.

Stagnancy From Large Coworking Franchises

Many of the larger coworking franchises are still stuck in a growth model. They’re rushing to expand and establish themselves as global brands. But along the way, they’re losing focus on what matters — the people who work there. 

They’re cramming as many people as possible into an increasingly smaller space to maximize profit. In a hurry to expand, they’re failing to put the care and detail into the offices they already have. In the short term, it works out well for the shareholders. But it comes at the cost of a loss of functionality, professionalism, efficiency and ultimately, client satisfaction.

On the other hand, the new trend towards high-end coworking is giving business owners and their employees the space and resources they need to thrive. From world-class design to upgraded technology and amenities, to a carefully-curated clientele — luxury coworking spaces offer the space, stability and sophistication that businesses need to succeed.

By putting the focus on quality, not quantity, coworking spaces like The Professional Centre in Toronto offer a more boutique office experience. The focus is on what you need to succeed, bolstering long-term success for both the clients and the space.

 

Shifting Trends in Toronto Coworking

A decade ago, coworking was Toronto’s hot new trend. Today, it’s the new normal — complete with its own trends and variety. More recently, the biggest trend is medium and enterprise businesses switching to coworking spaces.

These larger businesses are making use of Toronto coworking spaces for satellite offices and meeting rooms. But to support their needs and image, they need a high-quality space. 

Luxury coworking provides the professionalism that protects their brand image, as well as offering the technological and administrative support to keep them operating at maximum efficiency.

With time, this trend has proven beneficial for larger businesses, as they receive the same improvements of a creative and collaborative atmosphere that is a staple of Toronto’s coworking community.

Now that the benefits of these spaces are known, they are growing to rely more and more on shared offices in high-profile locations such as our financial district coworking spaces. These allow close proximity to main offices, and easy access for meetings.

 

It’s Not Just The Big Guys That Benefit

Luxury coworking isn’t just for large businesses. Even SMBs and startups are benefitting from the upgraded space. They receive enterprise-calibre amenities and support at SMB prices.

Administrative support like bookkeeping, payroll, and IT are available as part of a package or on a per-use purchase. It’s like having a full-time support staff without paying full-time salaries. This keeps businesses agile, responsive, and affordable.

As well, high-class design boosts their professional image, inspiring confidence in their clients, partners, and investors. It also improves their attractiveness while trying to hire new talent.

 

Book A Tour At Our Toronto Luxury  Coworking Spaces

The Professional Centre has two high-end coworking spaces in Toronto’s sought-after Financial District. Discover how our luxury shared office space can benefit your business. Book a tour today!

 

Toronto Tech Boom: 2019 Snapshot

Toronto Tech Talent Snags #3 Spot in CBRE’s Ranking

Confirming Toronto’s rapid ascension from tech player to tech powerhouse, CBRE’s 2019 Scoring Tech Talent report indicates the city has snagged the number 3 spot in CBRE’s North American Tech Talent Ranking, coming in just behind tech juggernauts San Francisco Bay Area and Seattle.

TECH TALENT SCORECARD RANKING, 2019, CBRE RESEARCH

The score is based on 13 metrics that measure the market’s depth, vitality and attractiveness

Toronto has added an astonishing 80,000 plus tech jobs, a 54% increase, over the past five years. Impressively, the city claims the fastest rate of growth out of all 50 markets tracked in the report. In fact, this solid showing reveals the number of tech jobs created in Toronto since 2013 is nearly equal to the number created in San Francisco Bay Area in the same span.

WHERE ARE TALENT WORKERS COMING FROM AND WHERE ARE THEY HEADED?
BRAIN DRAIN OR GAIN?

Source: Scoring Tech Talent, 2019, CBRE Research

Top 5 Brain Gain Markets

Toronto, ON
SF Bay Area, CA
Seattle, WA
Charlotte, NC
Vancouver, BC

Tech Degrees (2012-2017)

22,466
33,809
15,213
5,889
11,140

Tech Jobs Added (2013-2018)

80,100
88,500
30,680
18,070
22,300

Brain Gain
(Talent Added)

+57,634
+54,691
+15,467
+12,185
+11,160

Lowest 5 Brain Drain Markets

Chicago, IL
Phoenix, AZ
Los Angeles, CA
Boston, MA
Washington, DC

Tech Degrees (2012-2017)

30,471
24,404
41,453
37,717
49,060

Tech Jobs Added (2013-2018)

15,790
9,310
19,704
3,710
5,520

Brain Drain
(Talent Lost)

-14,681
-15,094
-21,749
-34,007
-43,540


Reinforcing the CBRE’s 2019 rankings, recent media reports have detailed how Toronto, along with other Canadian cities such as Vancouver (#12), Montreal (#13) and Ottawa (#19) are currently attracting an extraordinary roster of technology jobs/investments. To illustrate, both Accenture and Amazon have announced plans to create 800 and 600 jobs, respectively, and Salesforce has committed to investing $2 billion in Canada over the coming five years. Additionally, technology powerhouses Uber, Netflix and Google are among the tech companies developing hubs or planning expansions in Toronto.

JLL Report: Toronto is One of the World’s Most Innovative Cities

Toronto has established an enviable reputation internationally and has been polishing its status as a global player for some time. A recent report from JLL, a global provider/leader in real estate services, positions it amongst 10 “contenders” of the world’s most innovative cities that are now nipping at the heels of the commonly-held “big seven” (London, New York, Paris, Singapore, Tokyo, Hong Kong and Seoul). The rankings are based, in part, on analysis of leading indices that measure cities’ performance in key areas to include knowledge industries and innovation, human and social capital, infrastructure and repute.

The JLL report outlines the criteria that support a city’s designation revealing “The contenders are also benchmarked against seven core characteristics that the top echelon of cities possesses. These measures include:

    • Corporate presence with a critical mass of corporate headquarters and global enterprises such as finance, professional services and media;
    • Gateway functions facilitating two-way movement of people, investment, trade, tourism and information;
    • Scale and size of market and populations to support agglomeration, growth opportunities and capital investment;
    • Infrastructure platform to connect and support firms, workers and visitors;
    • Diverse and skilled talent pools;
    • Specialization and innovation to produce and commercialize knowledge, products and services; and
    • An attractive global brand and identity that projects the city’s core values.”

As these metrics support the growth of the tech sector in any individual centre, Toronto’s strong showing is not surprising in that it performs well in each category.

The city’s evolution, that has fueled its transformation into one of the world’s fastest-growing destinations for technology jobs, is the result of strategically leveraging early investments in artificial intelligence (AI) and importantly, the decades-old funding of basic research at Canadian universities that led to the breakthrough for machine-learning technologies. Small-part luck and large-part foresight, both are now hotbed technologies that are currently in extraordinarily high demand.

As well, the Canadian government’s support for technology development — with programs funding R&D, commercialization of projects and other resources available to underwrite innovation — along with, perhaps most significantly, a Canadian immigration policy that welcomes high-skilled workers, i.e. technology talent, sees Toronto well-positioned to become Silicon Valley North.

“Toronto, San Francisco and Seattle are comfortably mentioned in the same sentence and are attracting the best in the industry.”

Even in a diverse and dynamic city such as Toronto, the growing impact of the tech sector is dramatic and measurable. “Tech job growth has a multiplier effect in the economy and the influence of tech is re-shaping virtually every sector of real estate,” said CBRE Canada Vice Chairman Paul Morassutti. “Toronto, San Francisco and Seattle are comfortably mentioned in the same sentence and are attracting the best in the industry.”

Six Important Stats for Toronto

What happens when you get a city with a thriving start-up scene, world-class higher education, over 120 research institutions, a large pool of home-grown talent coupled with a diverse brain gain, a tidal flow of international capital, a strong infrastructure, and a global liveability score that ranks in the top 10?

It’s time to declare Toronto an established tech giant. Here are six important statistics that support the title:

#1
in highest tech brain gain in North America

#1
in largest growth momentum in tech labour pool in North America

#3
in North America for overall tech talent ranking

#7
in the world for liveability

#4
in North America for the dollar value of VC financings (Ontario)

#2
of “contenders” of the world’s most innovative cities


At a time when high-tech work can be done anywhere, anytime, 24/7 and even globally, today’s ideal office space is a flexible environment that is supported by the latest technology and allows workers to connect and collaborate with like-minded professionals in accommodating shared spaces. As Toronto continues to evolve as a tech hub, shared workspaces equipped with a range of equipment and amenities is a chance to be part of something significant. If you’d like more information on how our shared office space can work for you, call The Professional Centre today at 416-367-1055 or contact us.

 

 

How Industries Are Trying To Co-Opt The Coworking Model

 

They say imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. What that really means is that people copy success. As a result of the success of coworking, there are more industries trying to adopt or co-opt the model and make it their own.

In this piece, we take a look at some of the ways other industries are trying to leverage alternative coworking spaces.

Showrooming

A lot of major brick and mortars are feeling the pains of a growing digital world. Even major brands like Sears, KMart, and Macy’s are suffering, and have had major store closures over the past few years. Owning physical, commercial space is expensive, and it’s tough for companies to compete with digital businesses that can pour more resources into advertising and support.

Furniture companies are among the hardest hit businesses. They require large spaces for displays and struggle to compete with the prices of digital giants like Wayfair.

So, to better compete, furniture retailers are co-opting the coworking model with the “showrooming” trend.

Showrooming is where the retailer places their furniture into a space where people can use it. It’s like a functional display. They’re often used in coffee shops, coworking spaces, or even public buildings like museums and galleries. The furniture is sometimes donated, and other retailers pay a small fee to install them.

The showrooming approach is kind of similar to art at a coffee shop. They add to the atmosphere of the location, while also allowing clients to test and purchase the item.

Restaurants

The restaurant industry is tough. Margins are low, and in the digital age, the critics are plentiful. To help make the most out of their space, some restaurants are transitioning into the coworking space.

During off-peak hours, the restaurant closes down the kitchen and transforms into a space for business. They rent coworking space out to people and then revert back to a restaurant as peak business hours return.

It’s a good use of the space they already have, with their carefully curated atmosphere, comfortable chairs, and tables. And of course, most restaurants have the staple of any good office space – coffee.

During this time, the restaurant can operate much more efficiently. They keep their operational costs low, closing down their kitchens and minimizing the staff. However, this approach may be more beneficial to the restaurant than to the coworkers.

The people who rent coworking space in a restaurant have limited access. During peak restaurant hours, they need somewhere else to work. They may find themselves having to cut meetings short, so someone can bus their “desk” before the dinner rush.

It’s an approach better suited to freelance gigs and people working on their side-hustle, rather than businesses.

Gyms

Even some gyms are jumping into the alternative coworking space trend. Those with a large lounge area can meet a few coworking basics, like internet access and a place to sit. Plus, it makes it easier to squeeze in a workout after work.

In gyms with 24/7 access, you can get around the temporary workspace issue of restaurants. But they also come with their downsides, such as having to deal with a lot of distracting foot traffic and sharing the space with some exceptionally sweaty people.

Industry-Specific Spaces

Some existing and emerging coworking spaces are trying their hand at going industry-specific.

There are some benefits to this, as companies in the same industry can share similar needs and learn from each other. However, it can also create issues. For one, going industry-specific means sharing office space with your direct competition.

As well, you miss out on one of the main benefits of coworking, diverse collaboration. The pool of talent, knowledge, and networking available becomes more limited when renting an industry-specific coworking space.

Differentiation Strategies

In addition to industry-specific spaces, there are a few other differentiation strategies that new coworking spaces are trying. Two that have been receiving the most media attention are all-female and LGBTQ+ coworking spaces.

These alternative coworking spaces do address some issues. Such as the underrepresentation of women in coworking. However, they are also coming under a lot of scrutiny.

A common criticism is that by only allowing specific groups or demographics, these spaces are actually worsening the issues. An inclusive space has more societal benefits than an exclusive one.

Another criticism is that some of these spaces aren’t really meant to resolve issues or champion human rights. Instead, they’re just leveraging them for profit.

Why A Dedicated Coworking Space Is Best

The best option for any business is a dedicated coworking space. A true coworking office offers greater benefits, better amenities, and an optimal work environment. Some of the key benefits of choosing a dedicated coworking space over an alternative include:

  • Dedication – Coworking is their main focus
  • Business is a priority
  • Better for image – Professional space and design
  • Full access
  • Business support and amenities are available
  • Better hours
  • Inclusiveness

Book A Tour Of Toronto Coworking Space For Rent

The Professional Centre is dedicated to providing the best possible work environment. Our Toronto shared offices are found in the heart of the Financial District. We have premium amenities, ergonomics, and lighting. Currently, we have coworking space for rent available in Toronto.

 

Book a private tour today.

Toronto and The Global Liveability Index 2019

According to the just-released Economist Global Liveability Index 2019, Toronto is the seventh most livable city in the world (tied with Tokyo). Out of the 140 cities deemed most-liveable in the world, Toronto is holding steady at the same rank as last year. The highly-regarded Index is produced by the Economist Intelligence Unit — a division of The Economist Group which is the parent company of the respected magazine, The Economist.

A brief review of the methodology informing the Index reveals each of the 140 cities ranked is rated across five categories. Once reviewed, a city is then assigned a liveability score based on qualitative and quantitative factors within these groupings:

  • Stability: Analyzes the prevalence of crime and the threat of terror, military conflict or civil unrest
  • Healthcare: Considers the availability and quality of public and private healthcare, over-the-counter drugs and other general healthcare indicators.
  • Culture and Environment: Evaluates temperature rating; climate; level of corruption; social or religious restrictions, food and beverage along with other social components.
  • Education: Appraises quality and access to public/private education.
  • Infrastructure: Assesses roads quality, public transportation, availability of housing, and other related elements.

The ten most liveable cities
Rating is out of 100 with 100 being the best

Country

Austria
Australia
Australia
Japan
Canada
Canada
Canada
Japan
Denmark
Australia

City

Vienna
Melbourne
Sydney
Osaka
Calgary
Vancouver
Toronto
Tokyo
Copenhagen
Adelaide

Rank

1
2
3
4
5
6
7
7
9
10

Rating

99.1
98.4
98.1
97.7
97.5
97.3
97.2
97.2
96.8
96.6

Stability

100
95
95
100
100
95
100
100
95
95

Healthcare

100
100
100
100
100
100
100
100
100
100

Culture

96.3
98.6
97.2
93.5
90
100
97.2
94.4
95.4
94.2

Education

100
100
100
100
100
100
100
100
100
100

Infrastructure

100
100
100
96.4
100
92.9
89.3
92.9
100
96.4


 

Canadian cities dominated the Top Ten as Toronto, along with Calgary and Vancouver, was one of three designated Canadian urban centres. And as with its Canadian counterparts, the city excels in each of the areas that garner a high score on the Index… and guarantees a great environment within which to live and work. These include a well-funded, public-healthcare system, compulsory high-quality education, and a serviceable road and transportation infrastructure. The provision of these vital services is enhanced by a fully-democratic electoral system that is marked by low levels of corruption.

Reinforcing its Top Ten designation on the 2019 Index, Toronto offers a remarkable mix of career and business opportunities in a welcoming, safe and diverse environment. It’s not overstating it to suggest Toronto is the perfect place to live and work if you’re invested in living a healthy lifestyle. Marrying world-class health-related policies, a thriving arts and cultural scene, expansive culinary offerings, along with a lifestyle conscious design, the city offers an extraordinary setting for anyone seeking a healthy work-life balance.

And proof positive that Canada’s largest city is not resting on its laurels, Toronto is aggressively securing its piece of the future with a burgeoning technology sector that is competing measure-for-measure with Silicon Valley and Seattle. The city snagged the number three spot on CBRE’s Scoring Tech Talent Report, which ranks 50 U.S. and Canadian tech markets on 13 unique metrics to include talent supply, completed tech degrees and projected tech job growth.

It’s estimated that a staggering 80,100 tech jobs have been created in Toronto since 2013, which is a 54 percent increase and represents the fastest pace of talent acquisition reported among the 50 high-performing U.S. and Canadian tech markets cited.

Efficiently-serviced, forward-thinking, safe and diverse, if Toronto’s home you can proudly share that you live in one of the best cities in the world…again!

 


Locating a business in Toronto? Need a private or coworking office, or virtual office for your business? 

You can discover an exceptional coworking office experience at The Professional Centre (TPC), the Toronto coworking space where more is standard. If you’d like more information, call The Professional Centre today at 416-367-1055 or contact us.

Choosing The Best Plants For Your Desk | Improving Your Office Space

Office space is always evolving. Whether you’re working from home, at a coworking space, or out of a traditional office, we can all benefit from getting back to grassroots. Literally.

Plants are one of the most popular ways to personalize your desk. Well trends like fidget spinners come and go, plants have lasting power. And that’s no surprise. Not only are they pleasing to the eye and nose, but plants have also proven productivity and wellness benefits.

According to research by England’s Royal College of Agriculture having plants in a room increases attentiveness by 70%. They’re also proven to increase creative ideas and problem-solving.

In this article, we’re taking a look at what to look for when choosing the best office plant for your desk. As well as some suggestions, based on your needs.

Basic Considerations For an Office Desk Plant

The requirements for an office plant are a little different than what you might keep in your home. They’re going to need to be a little hardier, and your choices might be limited by your desk’s location.

Lighting

For starters, it’s best to choose desk lamps that do well in office lighting. If you have window access and plenty of sunshine, you have more options than a desk lit by fluorescent tubes.

Water

Next, you’re better off choosing vegetation that can go a few days without water. Most plants are fine going without water over the weekend. But when you go off on vacation, is there anyone you trust to remember to water your plants?

Size

The third thing to keep in mind is the size of the plant. Is your new desk plant going to take over your desk? The fiddle leaf fig is a cool little plant when you get it. But eventually, it turns into a full-size tree. It’s still a great office plant, but it’s not suited for your desk.

Ease of Care

If you’re looking for a desk plant that’s easy to care for, look no further than the Snake Plant. For those of us born without a green thumb, these plants are perfect for the desk. They thrive in medium and low-light environments and require infrequent watering.

However, make sure you look up the variety of snake plant you’re getting. Varieties like Futura Superba and Futura Robusta are smaller and great for desks. But some varieties can reach up to 40 inches. That’s a lot of desk real estate.

Appearance

When you’re deciding on an office plant, appearance matters. If potential clients or partners will see your desk, having the right look can help. A decluttered space with a plant that fits the look of the office leaves a good impression.

As well, a nice looking plant can boost your mood. For the most part, choosing a plant for the sake appearance comes down to personal taste.

One recommendation we might suggest is an air plant. They come in a variety of looks, and since they don’t need soil they can be hung in all sorts of unique ways. Air plants are fairly easy to care for, usually just needing the roots to be submerged for 2-3 hours per week.

Health

Some plants are even found to help reduce sick days, especially in poorly ventilated or shared office spaces. Almost all plants function as air purifiers to some degree. However, some perform this task better than others.

These purifying plants can help improve your short-term and long-term health. Indoor air can have as much as 120% more pollutants than outdoors. Plants are an effective, natural solution to cleaning your immediate area.

English ivy is one good solution for reducing pollutants in your office, especially if there is poor circulation. Its size is based on its environment. In a smaller pot, it fits easily on your desk and requires little care once it reaches maturity. If your office space has dry air, it has the added benefit of adding moisture to the air.

Wellness

In recent years, office spaces have been making an effort to increase their measure of workplace wellness. Adding plants to your workspace can provide stress relief and increase your perceived quality of life.

If the goal of your desk vegetation is to increase wellness, consider herbal plants. In addition to the soothing nature of plants, the scents of herbs have therapeutic qualities. A few examples include:

  • Rosemary staves off headaches and medical fatigue. It’s also believed to stimulate memory.
  • The smell of lavender is calming, helping to relieve stress.
  • Peppermint is energizing, it’s good for concentration and ideation.

Choose A Plant You Like

At the end of the day, choosing a plant for your office desk comes down to your preference. Most of us spend at least 40 hours a week in the office, so it’s worth finding the little things that improve the experience. Choose a plant that will help take the grind out of your day.


The Professional Centre is a coworking office space in the heart of Toronto’s Financial District. Our shared spaces, private offices, and meeting rooms are all carefully designed to create a more comfortable, engaging workspace. All our locations have large windows and natural light, for a healthy, modern atmosphere.

Toronto is a Coworking City

While coworking is a worldwide phenomenon, some places are much bigger adopters than others. In recent years, Toronto has established itself as a coworking city. And now, the proof is in- according to a new study, Toronto is now the 3rd fastest growing city for coworking.

How Toronto Coworking Stacks Up Globally

Toronto is a fast adopter and is often a testing ground for new business practices and ideas. The city was quick to embrace coworking, even before it became an international trend. This was spurred on by the office space needs of Toronto’s thriving tech sector.

Now that coworking is a proven format that drives success and agility, it’s growth is expanding even faster. Today, Toronto’s coworking growth is outranked only by New York and London.

The growth rate is not steady across Canada. Vancouver is the only other Canadian city that even registers in the top 50 coworking markets. The popularity of shared office space centers largely around tech and business hubs with expensive or limited real estate.

Why Is Coworking So Big In Toronto?

While Toronto has the 3rd fastest coworking growth rate, Canada ranks 7th globally. So what is it that sets the city apart in this space?

Here are a few of the key factors that make coworking so attractive in the GTA:

Demand

In Toronto, coworking isn’t just good practice — it’s becoming a necessity. As one of the biggest business cities in North America, companies are looking for space. As a result, the demand for office space is outpacing availability.

This disparity between availability and demand is even greater in high-demand areas. Office space in Toronto’s Financial District, for instance, is notoriously difficult to obtain.

Currently, at 2.6%, Toronto has the lowest vacancy rate in North America. Despite a skyline filled with cranes, the city cannot build fast enough to match the demand with traditional offices.

Cost

With the low availability of office space, all the power is in the hands of building owners. They are able to charge a fortune on rents and can demand longterm lease agreements. On top of all this, the year-over-year costs continue to grow. As a result, rent becomes a significant factor in profitability.

With that in mind, it just makes sense to find a lower-cost solution. Shared office space means shared costs. This allows companies to find affordable office space in the most desirable locations.

Through coworking, businesses can get higher-quality offices in better locations at lower costs.

Need for Agility

Modern businesses need to be agile. But Toronto office rentals usually have 5 to 10-year leases. That doesn’t leave a lot of room for mobility. Even large companies may not have a clear business plan for that far in the future.

This makes these contracts impractical for companies that may have rapid growth or fluctuations. As a result, even enterprise companies are moving into Toronto coworking spaces.

Coworking offices offer short term or even month-to-month rental options. That allows companies to quickly increase or decrease their office space. In short, you can scale your space in real-time.

Toronto is a Major Test Market

Toronto is a great place to do business and an ideal place to test the waters. With the advantages of bringing a business to Toronto, if you can’t make it work here you’ll likely struggle in US markets.

Companies frequently take advantage of Toronto’s talent pool and tax advantages to test the market for new business ideas.

The agility of coworking makes it the ideal solution for these tests. The short-term rentals allow you to move quickly with minimal risk. And you can expand quickly, so you never miss out on an important opportunity.

Join a City of Fast-Adopters

For those who want to grow their business, it’s all about finding the right environment. Toronto is full of industry leaders, movers and shakers. They’re quick to jump on new ideas and double down on the practices that work. It’s a mindset that’s attractive to entrepreneurs and enterprises alike.

Book a tour today and discover how Toronto coworking fits your business.

How To Find Meeting Rooms On Demand

Scheduling meetings can be tough when meetings don’t happen according to schedule. Last-minute changes and new opportunities don’t always leave you with a lot of options. Even if your office has meeting rooms, they can fill up fast and last minute schedules can create conflict. 

So how can you find a meeting room on demand?

Option 1: Coffee Shops

Coffee shops are all over the place. The friendly atmosphere, promise of wifi, and ready availability made them a popular last-minute meeting spot.

Coffee shop meetings were in-vogue about a decade ago. Low-budget, and accessible, they remain a great place to catch up with a friend. But it’s not the best place to conduct a professional business meeting. 

While there is definitely some convenience and savings here, the cons outweigh the pros.

Pros:

  • Readily Available – In cities like Toronto, there’s a coffee shop on every corner.
  • Easy Access – Coffee shops offer long hours and street-level access. Since they are all over the place, you can pick a spot that everyone can access.

Cons:

  • Noisy – Coffee shops are loud. You can hear everyone, and everyone can hear you. That makes it a poor choice for discussing sensitive information. It’s also a distracting environment. It’s hard to focus on the topic at hand when it’s continually interrupted by people placing their orders.
  • No Guaranteed Space – There are no reservations at a coffee shop. There’s a reason that coffee shops keep popping up — they keep filling up. Depending on the location and time of day, you may have trouble finding a spot to sit.
  • Unprofessional – They aren’t laying out the red carpet at Tim Horton’s, no matter how many Timbits you buy. Meeting at a coffee shop is always going to feel more casual than professional. There’s certainly a place for these informal settings, but using them at the wrong time makes you look unprofessional.

 

Option 2: Hotels

Hotels have a long history of hosting meetings. Most 3+ star hotels have several meeting rooms available. These can serve a number of functions from out-of-town meetings to full-blown conferences.

Generally, hotel meeting rooms are geared towards large meetings. They want to use them to generate extra cash in the form of bedroom rentals, or food and beverage minimums. The rates are on the higher end up until you get a big enough group together.

These meeting rooms are typically geared towards groups of 50+ people. The larger your group, the more sense a hotel makes.

Pros:

  • Reservable – Unlike a coffee shop, you can reserve spots in a hotel. Bookings are available months in advance.
  • Can Host Large Groups – If you’re with a large group, especially if that group is staying at the hotel that night, hotel meeting rooms start to make a lot of sense. They have a lot of space, and the cost per person is lower the more people there are. Big corporations who are out of town for a convention will often opt for these locations.

Cons

  • Limited Sizes – If you’re hosting a group of 40 or less, you may be out of luck. The room sizes are a little too large to be comfortable and the per-person cost is a little too high. In some instances, they may not even rent a room to too small of a group, since they can make more money on catering with a large group.
  • Outdated – Booking a meeting at a hotel is even more outdated than a coffee shop. But it’s not just that it’s off-trend. Most of their rooms are out of date both aesthetically and technologically. They simply do not meet the needs of a modern business meeting.
  • Availability – Hotels and event centres may not have last-minute availability. These bookings often happen far in advance, so they are not always an option for on-demand meeting rentals.

 

Option 3: Coworking Space Meeting Room Rentals

Coworking spaces are the modern way of doing business. They’re also the new source for on-demand meeting room rentals. Top tier coworking offices offer a number of high-quality meeting room rentals.

These rooms offer the most convenience to companies working in the space. However, any company can benefit from renting meeting venues. With ready availability in the heart of the city, you can find meeting rooms on-demand that are available near you.

Convenient, versatile, and technologically up-to-date. Shared office meeting room rentals are the best option for small to medium-sized meetings.

Advantages:

  • Professional – With professional design and high-quality equipment, these meeting rooms offer a professional image. 
  • Versatility – Coworking meeting rooms allow you to fit your room according to the size of your meeting. A range of different rooms can accommodate 2 to 40 people. 
  • On-Demand Reservations – These rooms offer reservations to guarantee your spot. But you don’t need to book months in advance. Rooms are available when you need them most.
  • Technology – Coworking office meeting room rentals are equipped with all the tech a modern meeting demands. Conference calling, webcams, screens and more.

 

Book A Toronto Meeting Room Rental On-Demand

The Professional Centre is a coworking office in Toronto’s Financial District. We host a variety of professionally designed, high-quality meeting rooms that are suitable for any business. Our rooms are available per hour or per day.

Select your room and book a meeting today!