November 22, 2019
With a 39% share of co-working employees using its spaces, WeWork is the most popular brand, its recent financial travails notwithstanding. Running a close second in popularity, though, is local players, which have an aggregate 36%. That’s according to a new survey from Clutch, a B2B ratings and reviews platform.
Will local operators eventually dethrone WeWork? Clutch says they will, based partly on co-working’s overall growth. The number of co-working spaces worldwide is expected to reach 26,000 in 2022, up from 18,000 in 2019 and 8,000 in 2015.
“I think the smaller, local co-working spaces will overtake WeWork,” said Andrew Schuh, marketing specialist at Focus Property Group, which owns Enterprise Coworking in Denver. “You can’t stop that kind of momentum [that co-working spaces have].”
Local co-working companies tend to be more involved in their community, Clutch says. which also may help explain their appeal.
“Being local and involved in local events and forming partnerships with local businesses has really helped us,” Schuh said. “We have a local touch that WeWork doesn’t have.” That local touch even extends to hosting weddings, in the case of Enterprise.
From the standpoint of the employees who work in the spaces, satisfaction levels are pretty high, Clutch says. The survey says that most businesses and workers stay in their co-working spaces for more than a year. Three-fourths of co-working employees (75%) have been in their current co-working space for at least one year, including 18% who have worked there for five years or more.
Among the Clutch survey’s other findings:
• Fewer than one-fourth of co-working employees (22%) work only in these spaces. This means that most employees who use co-working space see it as a supplement to their workspace, not as their sole work location.
• Just under half of co-working employees (46%) work in a co-working space five days or more per week. However, larger businesses tend to spend more time working in co-working spaces than smaller or individual businesses.
• Co-working spaces tend to have a variety of layouts, including open floor plans (52%), private rooms (50%), and cubicle layouts (42%). Different companies and employees benefit from different types of layouts.
• Co-working offices offer a variety of workspaces to meet employee and business needs, including private meeting rooms (66%), private offices (66%), and small collaboration rooms (60%).
Clutch surveyed 501 people who have worked in a co-working space in the past 12 months. Half of the respondents work in an urban area (49%); 35% work in a suburban area; and 17% work in a rural area.
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