by a Twin Cities Industry Professional
The CoWorking industry has taken the world by storm. In 2005, there were only 3 verified CoWorking spaces in the entire world. And as of 2017, that number had skyrocketed to a staggering 15,000 and that number is slated to double by the end of 2018. These figures are a testament to the rise in digital workplaces and remote working.
I just came back from our Global Workspace Association conference in Austin, Texas and came away with a few interesting facts:
In July and August 2018, 306 new CoWorking centers were opened worldwide. 169 being in the United States. The number of new CoWorking locations are estimated to grow to almost 1,000 in the U.S. by the end of 2018. At the end of 2017, 44% of coworkers were female. By the end of 2018 that number will grow to almost 50% of coworkers being female. By the end of 2019, there will be approximately 1 million people coworking.
But CoWorking is not just for small businesses anymore. Global companies are using flexible space solutions as alternatives to taking or building their own workspaces. They are turning to large CoWorking companies like WeWork to house entire divisions of a company for special projects or teams, and in some cases entire divisions of a company. Studies providing workspace is expensive and can tie up capital. CoWorking can reduce their liabilities and long-term commitments by using flex space providers to house their workforce. Instead of CoWorking communities growing by one or two people at a time, large companies will place 40 or 50 people in a workspace and as many as hundreds of people at one time or over a short period of time.
These facts tell us that the workspace has changed dramatically. Particularly since trends in entrepreneurship and the evolution of the home based business has changed not only how work is done but also where work is done. In addition, technology has played a large part in the ability for workers to use the Internet to work anywhere they choose. CoWorking supports businesses by offering flexible workspace solutions, short term space commitments and the economies of sharing facilities and staff. In short, flex space and CoWorking works! Not just for small businesses but for every business.
“Life is short. Work someplace awesome!”
My background as a CoWorking service business started in 1981. I have seen the workspace evolve and change dramatically. In our early days, we looked for usually “one guy” to take a permanent private office. The offices looked very similar in that they had a basic desk, credenza, chair and a couple of side chairs. That format worked for years. And then technology took the lead. Computers and the internet allowed people to communicate at a different level. Email changed correspondence norms and encouraged less paper and mail costs. The pace of workspace became lightning fast, no more worrying about the fax machine or document delivery. Our target clients are road warriors who carry their office wherever they go whether it is home, auto, hotel or designated workspace.
Technology changed the definition of work. Today almost 90% of businesses created are home based. And home can be an excellent place to work: the dress code rocks, the commute is non-existent, and the economics for a small business make sense. But many people found home is not ideal for those who find distractions a challenge. The number one complaint of businesses that work from home is isolation. There is just no interaction with like-minded professionals or coworkers hanging out at the coffee station or the water cooler. That is where CoWorking hits a home run.
At OffiCenters we have conquered the isolation of entrepreneurial workers. Our workspaces push beyond four walls and include over 1,200 members in our community. We offer not just the space to work but options on collaboration and business challenges. We have networking groups, educational seminars, community outreach and charitable events, and mostly opportunities to meet the five generations of members in our workspaces. In my over 30-year career in workspace as a service, it has never been so exciting.
A recent survey of OffiCenters’ members (August 2018) showed 100% found our spaces conquered their isolation problems. 81% of members have made critical professional bounds within our community. 83% feel that joining a CoWorking community makes them more productive. 78% say they have increased their bottom line since joining OffiCenter. These are powerful numbers and we are proud to influence our community to success. We really emphasize working within our own community and for members to buy from one another whenever possible.
Over the last 8 years we have completely remodeled our workspaces to include not just single private offices but more meeting and conference room choices, team spaces, collaborative workspaces and 60 seat open areas in all of our locations. Our CoWorking spaces have a coffee shop type of environment only with a more professional feel and a lot better Wi-Fi connections.
OffiCenters has 7 locations in the Twin Cities area, which include: Bloomington, Edina, Minnetonka, St. Louis Park, Woodbury and the Minneapolis North Loop.
If you or anyone you know would like to try CoWorking,
please call us at (612) 349-2700 for a free day pass.
Lori Spiess, Founder of OffiCenters
Lori Spiess is the Founder of OffiCenters and has provided workspace solutions to the Twin Cities since 1981. She is an innovator; leader and motivator who help businesses do their best work. She was the first woman President of the Global Workspace Association (GWA). Her company won Most Innovative Workspace 2014 and she made Minnesota Real Power 50 list in 2015. Spiess, a recent cancer survivor, has a new motto: Life is short. Work someplace awesome!
You can view her location at https://officenters.com/.
Is Your Physical Space
Helping or Hurting Your
Today, dozens of colleges in the Minneapolis/St Paul metropolitan area are pumping out graduates eager to find jobs as well as a great company to work for. While you might believe you have the right space to attract the best candidates, it might be a good time to step back and reflect on what you have to offer and what these graduates want so that when this fresh batch of interviewees sit down to talk, you know what your company’s commercial real estate space says about your company. Research shows, the current generation of graduates expect more from the companies they work for than generations of the past. This group values freedom, independence, and creative space. They view their office as a second home and they want to enjoy going there every single day. With the unemployment rate hovering around 3% and the knowledge that the average person will likely change jobs 12 times in their careers, you better believe your employees will find the work environment they are looking for if your company doesn’t have it.
Paramount recently represented a food distribution company, where the president expressed a desire for space that reflected the company’s culture. After considering several spaces that would have resulted in lower occupancy costs, leadership ultimately selected space that was more expensive but had amenities including a roof top patio overlooking the city that would allow their team to gather and test their product. For this company, it was critical that employees would interact with each other and their product on a regular basis and it was worth the extra expense to have a space that could support an outdoor grill area to make it happen.
So how do you make your space reflect your culture? Location, architecture, physical layout, furniture design, color, work spaces, and amenities are all aspects that can reflect your company culture. Today’s job seekers do consider these physical attributes when deciding where they want to work every day. So take some time and think to yourself; “does this space make me excited about working here? Does it embody the culture of the company? Is it functional? What aspects of your company’s space can be changed and altered to better reflect your culture and company goals? Some ideas you might consider: Health & sports enthusiasts might cause you to look for space close to biking trails, space with fitness facilities and showers, you might even add bike storage options. If you’re a creative marketing company you might try looking for unique architecture or a visually appealing space lay out. Maybe all you need to do is add a few tap beers, an air hockey table, and a flat screen TV to up the “fun” factor. Whatever you do, make sure you are consistent with your message regarding your company culture and appeal to the types of people you want to work for you.
Does Your Company Need New Space?
Paramount partnered with Make-A-Wish® Minnesota to help them find their new work space. Hear more about Make-A-Wish® Minnesota and their relationship with Fred Hedberg at Paramount Real Estate Corporation. Questions? Call Paramount at (952) 854-8290.
LONE OAK BUSINESS CENTER II
1060 Lone Oak Road | Eagan, MN
Two (2) office/ warehouse spaces located in Eagan are available For Lease immediately
Option #1: 3,410 SF office + 9,133 SF warehouse = 12,543 SF total Option #2: 7,605 SF office + 10,256 SF warehouse = 17,861 SF total
Located just off Lone Oak Road and Neil Armstrong Road, with easy access to I-35E, I-494 and Hwy 55
Close proximity to downtown Saint Paul and MSP International Airport
Docks & drive-in doors available
Option #1: four (4) docks; one (1) drive-in door
Option #2: two (2) docks; one (1) drive-in door
New Report by the Research Foundation
Office Space Demand Forecast:
Second Quarter 2016
Key report findings:
The national office market is forecast to absorb approximately 34.6 million square feet of space in 2016, down from 62.1 million square feet in 2015, as economic growth flattens in the U.S.
GDP growth, which slowed to 0.5 percent in the first quarter of 2016, is forecast to remain low, near 1 to 2 percent annualized growth, with the lower boundary of the GDP forecast dipping into slightly negative territory.
The current forecast projects net absorption of office space to regain some strength in 2017, totaling approximately 46.2 million square feet. However, this figure could change, depending on how the economy fares throughout the rest of 2016.
Economic Flattening Points to Declining Demand for U.S. Office Space Through 2017
The national office market is forecast to absorb approximately 34.6 million square feet of space in 2016, down from 62.1 million square feet in 2015, as economic growth flattens in the U.S., according to Dr. Hany Guirguis, Manhattan College, and Dr. Joshua Harris, University of Central Florida. Gross domestic product (GDP) growth, which slowed to 0.5 percent in the first quarter of 2016, is forecast by the model to remain low, near 1 to 2 percent annualized growth, with the lower boundary of the GDP forecast dipping into slightly negative territory. The current forecast projects net absorption of office space to regain some strength in 2017, totaling approximately 46.2 million square feet. However, this figure could change, depending on how the economy fares throughout the rest of 2016.
“Employment, both overall and in the office-using sectors, had maintained fairly steady growth until the most recent reading for April 2016, which registered only 160,000 net new jobs. This was well below the 200,000 jobs-per month threshold considered the minimum necessary for sustained economic growth,” says Harris. “We expect the overall declines in macroeconomic output to continue to result in lower employment gains for the rest of 2016.
Read more: Office Space Demand 2Q16
By: Dr. Joshua Harris, University of Central Florida and Dr. Hany Guirguis, Manhattan College