Around the world, people share spaces for car park, for storage and even for planting — all of which is made possible by today’s technology and the growing knack to save money.
We see the same impact in the Coworking Industry which has changed how we work forever.
The benefits speak for themselves as many idle spaces have been converted to working spaces to earn money for owners, and entrepreneurs don’t have to rent an entire building they don’t need, thereby saving a substantial amount.
But this trend is not just about the money, while the savings for everyone in the market are substantial they are not the only benefit of Coworking spaces. Employers now see the need to project a great and flexible culture to attract the best talents by offering flexibility and allowing them work out from Coworking spaces closer to them has become a win-win for everyone. Flexible work hours has been proven to have a good impact on productivity and employers now have the advantage of spreading their location tentacles when hiring. The hiring pool is now global for businesses.
Coworking spaces have grown in popularity and have sprung up in city centres like Ibadan, Port Harcourt and Kano as well as the suburbs like Ekiti, Uyo, and in effect cater to both ends of the commute – freelancers and nomads, startups making use of them as flexible alternative to having their own office space, and organizations using them as extension of their office space. There are numerous factors that drive the Coworking revolution inspired by the sharing model. The trends and innovations to note in 2019 are:
1. Niche-specific spaces: According to GCUC, the number of spaces that appeal to members with specialized needs – like shared biolabs, writers’ spaces, women-oriented spaces, commercial kitchens, etc. – will continue to grow. We see this trends picking up in Africa with Coworking hubs such as Tribexx; a women only hub in Lagos and Civic Lab, a hub for social Innovators in Abuja.
2. Increase in Corporate coworking: We see corporate banks taking advantage of these trends like Proshare by FCMB and Sterling Bank’s Café One. In their quest to support Nigeria’s growing community of entrepreneurs and millennials, Banks are seeing the need to create lifestyle banking initiative designed as a digital, hybrid experience centres all connected to their product offerings and services.
3. Real estate industry active role: Per the 2019 Global Coworking Forecast by GCUC, large real estate firms and other landlords are starting to offer Coworking spaces to tenants as well. Lagos, Nigeria has not been left behind as many of these options can be found in areas like Lekki and Ikeja.
4. Wellness at the Workplace: Coworking space providers now provide amenities designed to attract more members by promoting a healthy working environment; yoga and fitness classes, climbing walls, and provision of relaxation areas.
All around us from Lagos to Nairobi and Johannesburg, we see these trends spreading, promoting inclusion that allows for like minds to come together harnessing the power of the sharing model as it continues to grow; disrupting traditional norms and creating an economy of its own.
This July in Lagos, the third edition of Coworking Conference will hold, with the theme "Coworking – Unveiling the Sharing Economy"
Beyond co-location, which coworking spaces offer, many have missed the silent revolution which Coworking models i.e the sharing economy. We will be dissecting opportunities in the sharing economy and connecting the dots between Coworking and other Industries pivotal to national development. You do not want to miss this Conference, register for the 2019 Nigeria Coworking conference Here.