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The Warsaw Voice » Business » April 30, 2018
Business & Economy
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Coworking office and sharing economy-what they have in common?
April 30, 2018   
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An emerging, highly promising economic trend, known as the sharing economy, allows people to share resources such as place, goods, services and skills, often at significantly lower cost.

Sharing is more efficient than ownership and it gives the flexibility to make arrangements faster, with less risk and often on your own terms. Home-sharing services offered on-demand by Airbnb , ride sharing offered by Uber or office sharing offered by WeWork or MindSpace are the perfect examples of how entrepreneurs can easily develop their business without owning valuable items, such as offices ,flats or cars, while creating opportunities for others to extract value from possessions. But it wouldn’t be possible without technology, as all forms of sharing economy use the Internet platforms to connect providers with customers.

The use of mobile devices and Internet means more flexibility in work and life. Mobile employees are not bound to one office location anymore and they are open for sharing the cost of renting and running an office and making use of economies of scale. Sharing the office space in coworking is cheaper than renting a traditional office. It offers a unique alternative with flexible rental terms, lower rents, ready-to-use office equipment and "plug and work" infrastructure. Most shared office spaces offer day’s or month’s fees, as opposed to traditional office leases, which lock you in for years.

The small and medium enterprises or founders of start-ups always try to limit the costs without losing creativity power. More and more corporations have already started to realize that coworking offers great potential for fostering innovation and reduce the fix office costs. Finally, coworking spaces are becoming the places where corporations meet startups and they generate new solutions and products or work in a creative environment. Big companies are concerned about competing for skilled workers and they realize that creativity needs smaller flexible groups of people in personalized environment. Unlike in traditional office, the coworking community consists of people who work in different industries or areas ,mixing specialists from corporations, startups, freelancers or sole entrepreneurs.

We have observed the extremely rapid development of coworking offices in all main cities in Poland. In last two years the number of flexible offices increased over 100% and we have now more than 200 such spaces across the country-says Robert Chmielewski, Co-founder of innovative coworking office on-line platform www.sharespace.pl. This innovative platform allows to search for and book a working space in a shared coworking office by the days or months. It creates on-line rental tool for booking a single desk, dedicated office space or meeting room, with the possibility of using the office equipment, joint reception and kitchen. WiFi, heating, air conditioning, business services, reception, cleaning, insurance - all this is included in the rent, making it easy to budget the business expenses even for freelancers. The functionality of searching a desired location, suitable lease offer, making booking transaction and making secure on-line payment makes this tool attractive to huge amount of entrepreneurs looking for flexibility by working place at an affordable price of few hundreds Zloty per month for a place to work.

Sharing economy and coworking were vivid subjects discussed during Warsaw Economic Hub organized by Warsaw Voice and New York Times on 15th December 2017 in Warsaw. During panel discussion – Innovative Cities. Is future now? panelists agreed that more independent lifestyles, mobility and part-time work attract people to the sharing economy. Sylwia Ajdys from ShareSpace concluded that flexible and coworking offices are the future of working place, people will not only find their short-term office space on digital platforms but also make whole rental transaction on-line.

Users of sharing economy are usually creative, cooperative and mobile and they want to work in unique atmosphere. Adaptive reuse of historic buildings for commercial spaces, designed as flexible and coworking offices, is a new and strong real estate trend as these spaces have become desirable working place for startups and mobile workers. They are often less expensive to rent than the modern buildings on the market and combine the soul of historic elements with the contemporary amenities and technologies that entrepreneurs love. Revitalization and modernization of buildings and public spaces is the basis for an innovative approach to sustainable city real estate management- said Anna Górska - Kwiatkowska, Associate and Landlord Representation Manager from Cushman & Wakefield Poland during the conference.
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