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Traditional offices and coworking spaces have had to adapt to ensure compliance with the ever-changing government policies regarding COVID-19. However, this is not to say that coworking spaces are doomed, far from it. Instead, coworking spaces in London simply need to adapt and ensure all health and safety measures are in place to guarantee staff and client welfare.
Written by Matt
Unlike serviced and managed offices, where the clientele remains much the same and works as a “work bubble”, coworking spaces face a slight problem regarding the mixture of people and work times. However, through applying new rules and regulations that adhere to social distancing, mask-wearing and revisiting hygiene processes, coworking spaces are more than able to adapt to this new world.
In this article, we’re looking at what your building needs to be the best coworking space in London, as well as conforming to COVID health and safety measures.
As briefly mentioned, in order for “normal” working to resume in co-working spaces, health and safety procedures need to be in place. Tech-based solutions such as temperature scanning and the NHS’ contact tracing has greatly enhanced your ability to track and control the virus in workplaces. This dedication to the welfare of the occupants is an extremely attractive option for many and should encourage them to return to a workspace they know cares about their welfare.
We do! We have spent a great deal of time and invested heavily to ensure all our London coworking spaces adhere to the COVID health and safety demands issued by the government. For an in-depth guide on what we’ve done to ensure our coworking spaces are safe to work in, take a look at our getting London back to work article.
Coworking by its nature offers flexible working, but we’re specifically referring to offering flexible leases as opposed to fixed-term contracts. Many people who are coworking are likely looking for a part-time working solution, somewhere they can jump in and out of at will. Slapping a minimum one year fixed contract onto a coworking area isn’t an appealing prospect for many start-ups, small businesses or freelancers, for a number of reasons, notably price.
Having a flexible contract is now more essential than ever during COVID-19, with rules and regulations changing almost weekly, businesses aren’t prepared to put pen to paper and sign a fixed, long-term contract. An example of this was demonstrated in 2011 after the Christchurch earth in New Zealand; where new clauses named the ‘no access in an emergency’. This is where the landlord agrees to abate a fair proportion of the rent during a period when the tenant cannot access the premises, for a variety of reasons including earthquake, flood, pandemic etc.
Breakout spaces are now seen as an essential amenity for any modern workspace as they allow people to relax and unwind away from their desks. Breakout spaces can also be used for a more relaxed and social work setting, allowing people to mingle and network as and when they please (COVID-dependent, of course).
Must-haves in all coworking spaces include:
– Fast, reliable Wi-Fi
– Wireless security
– VPN compatibility
– PC Monitors
And tech support as and when required
Some coworking spaces now provide users with access to equipment to facilitate their working. Some coworking spaces also provide the option for clients access to video conference rooms and meeting rooms – this is something we offer at Halkin.
While not a necessity, working in a coworking space in a desirable location has several benefits. Access to transport links is arguably the biggest benefit, especially if you’re always on the move or simply require swift access from home to work and vice versa. Working in the heart of a bustling city like London, you have access to a variety of fine restaurants and bars as well as leisure centres. It’s also very appealing to prospective clients when you invite them to a meeting in an iconic location in London.
Halkin specialise in providing such workspaces across London, with a range of offices in Mayfair, Watford, Southwark and The City.
A must-have for any workspace environment, whether it’s a shared, managed or private work environment. Adequate security measures need to be in place to ensure workers are able to work securely. Most high-end coworking spaces will have some sort of keycode or access card that you will need to enter the building.
It’s common for coworking spaces to operate under a system where you bring in your workspace to work and leave with it. This way, you’re solely responsible for your belongings. However, some of the best coworking spaces in London will offer lockable storage areas that you can leave your belongings in overnight (this is something we offer here at Halkin).
This may sound strange but the design of a building can play a huge role with regards to productivity. For example, while having plenty of natural light in a coworking building is almost always an attractive prospect, it can become a distraction.
Your coworking space may boast fantastic views over the city, you need to ensure this doesn’t become a distraction. Even something as simple as having blinds and window covering to prevent light reflection is essential in any coworking space to maximise both productivity and accessibility – specifically being able to view screens in direct sunlight.
Furniture also plays a role here, the type of desks and chairs used in coworking spaces need to appeal and be comfortable for everyone. Air conditioning and room temperature are also factors that need to be considered.
Although one of the main reasons people opt for coworking spaces is for the networking events and social benefits, privacy is still essential to enhance productivity and personal space. Cramming several workers together into one space isn’t exactly the best incentive for networking or to promote productivity. Investing in workspaces and dedicated desks that accommodate for space and privacy – at least to some degree – can enhance workflow and avoids putting confidentiality at risk. Having coved workspaces, pods or simply enough space to effectively spread out are simple ways to make workers feel as though they have their own space and privacy.
Halkin are still operating through COVID-19 (unless otherwise informed by the government), so if you would like to arrange a viewing or experience one of our coworking spaces yourself, please get in touch with our team today.
Halkin provide the best coworking spaces in London. With access to internal facilities such as meeting rooms, conference facilities, on-site cafes and restaurants as well as all the tech amenities you need, you will be well looked after at Halkin. All our coworking spaces are located in London next to popular tube stations for accessible transport in and out of the city.
Get in touch today to talk more about your membership options or to arrange a tour. Alternatively, check out our location pages where you’ll find video tours available to watch.
With all the new guidelines in place, it’s quite a change to the way we all have to work. However, feedback has been positive from our customers that the measures we have put in place have allowed them to work with peace of mind and focus on getting back to doing what they do best:
‘The protective measures are thoughtful, sensible, and appropriate.’
Matthew Healey of Pace Flow Assurance
‘Halkin has put great systems in place to tackle COVID from rigorous cleaning to Sanitising station to one way system to meet Government guidelines. Great serviced office provider where Class meets in style and Safety.’
Ashish Jain of Maxgain Investments
‘I can understand why people in London may be feeling nervous about a return to the office. It will be a big change after months of working from home during lockdown. While 100% no risk isn’t a guarantee anyone can promise at the moment, I’ve been confident that Halkin are doing all they can to support us.’
Darren Adler of First Responder Disaster Relief Agency, Humanitarian Operations