Singapore is one of the most densely populated countries in the world. There are more than 5 million people living on only 716 square kilometers of land. This means that, with its current population, Singapore has an average of 6,500 people per square kilometer (17,000/square mile). With so many people in such a small space, working together in collaborative settings becomes very attractive and beneficial to businesses.
The current trend in office space is coworking. This form of workspace rental has been gaining popularity in Singapore over the past few years, driven by increased telecommuting and a push for shared workspaces from both workers and companies. As increasing numbers of people choose to work from home or outside the traditional 9-5 working hours, coworking spaces have risen at a fast clip to meet this need.
The benefits of choosing a shared workspace over a conventional office are numerous: independence, stability, possibility to rent for shorter time frames rather than being locked into long leases, flexibility in terms of location, and amenities offered. Renters also have the opportunity to network with other entrepreneurs working out of the same space. In fact, 98% of respondents to a 2015 survey said that the benefits of coworking outweighed the costs.
Successful coworking spaces in Singapore offer three key services to their tenants: hot-desking, meeting rooms that can be shared by multiple companies, and access to administrative support for members. This includes assistance with marketing, business plans, and financial tools as well as legal advice for startups. Many also provide Internet connections and power sockets at every desk to ensure ready workflow. COWO is one such successful space with over 2,500 members working out of its 14 locations island-wide.
A typical coworking office in Singapore will offer users access to desks, chairs, high-speed Internet, and electricity – as well as shared meeting rooms and a printer. Many coworking offices will also install drop-in work pods where freelancers can grab a seat and continue working even when the office is near closing time. This is especially useful for those who might not be quite ready to head home or don’t own their own space yet.
A truly successful coworking office in Singapore creates an environment conducive to creativity and professional productivity. Not only should it provide access to like-minded people but also to workshops, seminars, and events that boost the skills of those within its walls. The ability to network with those outside one’s industry has always been crucial for career advancement; however, with a coworking office, freelancers are surrounded by the best possible chance to make this happen.
Many coworking offices will also have a restaurant or bar on-site for users who want to socialize after work, making it an even better place to forge new connections.
Some will provide housing at affordable rates as well, which can be part of their remuneration packages for those staff who might not have the money yet for a rental deposit within Singapore’s central business district. Residences can come in many forms – from serviced apartments shared by several members to individual rooms containing beds and desks. This option creates flexibility so that employees can choose between working at home or coming into the office depending on what is most important for each day. A truly successful coworking office in Singapore will offer innovation and enable creativity.