Creative coworking spaces have been a significant trend in multifamily living since the pandemic–and for very good reason. A March 2022 study from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics showed that 32% of establishments have increased telework since the start of the pandemic. Still more employers have implemented hybrid-remote schedules, with staff working from home one or more days each week.
This increase in work-from-home and hybrid working arrangements means that more people are using their residences to double as their offices. While many employers have gradually brought their employees back to traditional workspaces, the remote work trend has shown staying power, as employers increasingly use remote and hybrid work to attract top talent.
For many employees, flexible work arrangements are a significant perk, but working and living in the same space can also have disadvantages. For example, it can be more complex to maintain a work-life balance, and employees often find themselves craving a change of scenery to spark creativity and maintain their mental health. A quick commute to a coffee shop or offsite coworking space is often just what remote workers need to boost their mood and productivity.
The Value of Incorporating Creative Coworking Spaces for Multifamily
Multifamily residential facilities have quickly realized the opportunity to provide their work-from-home tenants with creative coworking spaces on-site. So, instead of driving to the nearest coffee shop with free Wi-Fi or paying a premium for rentable coworking spaces, multifamily residents can walk to a creative coworking space that is already a built-in amenity of their home community. This is a fantastic way for multifamily residences to create a strong tenant community and ultimately attract and retain high-quality tenants.
However, a creative coworking space must be done right to attract tenants. Here are four ways to support creative coworking in your multifamily properties.
1. Provide Fast and Free Wi-Fi - and a Cup of Joe
You will need free, lightning-fast Wi-Fi to convert coffee shop workers to using your space. Since remote workers rely on video calls and web-based tools to do their jobs effectively, reliable internet is a non-negotiable for any creative coworking space. Consider also including a coffee maker and a stocked snack pantry to recreate the ambiance of a coffee shop - with the added convenience of being just steps away from your tenants’ homes.
2. Offer a Mix of Collaborative and Private Spaces
The nature of a remote worker's job can vary daily and even hour to hour. Sometimes they might appreciate working in a shared space with others to spark their creativity or socialize, while other times, they may need a quiet and secluded space to focus or take calls. Consider incorporating both collaborative open spaces and private spaces (such as a few soundproof phone booths) to accommodate different working styles and the day-to-day needs of your tenants. You could also incorporate reservable meeting rooms for remote workers to take client meetings.
3. Stock the Space with Supplies
While remote workers typically have their own laptops and cell phones for their daily work, they may have yet to invest in other standard office equipment like printers, copiers or second monitors. And oftentimes, their employer hasn’t provided them with these tools either. Adding these supplies and a closet of basics like pens, paper, and post-it notes adds convenience for your tenants, who can simply swing by the creative coworking space instead of driving to the nearest print center or office supply store.
4. Keep the Workspace Clean and Pristine
Few things are more distracting than a messy workspace, so creative workspaces will go unused if they become filthy and cluttered. Plus, more than ever, remote workers are conscious of their health, and being in a place that’s poorly maintained or infrequently cleaned is sure to be concerning.
Fortunately, keeping a space like this clean can be very simple and cost-effective with the help of autonomous cleaning solutions, like Whiz, the commercial robot vacuum. Whiz handles the vacuuming in community spaces, which typically accounts for around 30% of total cleaning time, so that maintenance and cleaning staff can focus on other higher-value tasks. Plus, keeping carpets and floors clean is one of the easiest ways to improve building air quality and keep the area smelling fresh and clean - one of the first things tenants are likely to notice.
Incorporating creative coworking spaces is one of the best ways multifamily residences can attract and retain remote professionals as tenants. As this subset of the working population grows, offering this amenity can help you maintain competitiveness and even allow you to raise your rates to reflect the value and convenience you're offering to your tenants.
Since many of these changes can be implemented with minimal additional cost, incorporating a creative coworking space is a cost-effective but powerful way to increase your margins while keeping renters satisfied.
For more information about Whiz and other workspace robots, contact SoftBank Robotics today.