Over the last year, Unit Seven has seen the number of local businesses using its work hub facilities increase by nearly 200%. You can read more about what makes Unit Seven so special, but in this article we look at why more and more people are looking at work hubs as a viable option to working from home.
As technology and business practice have evolved, so has the way we work and our working environment. Different ways of working have become more common and people are seeing how easy it has become to work flexibly, set up your own business or become freelance.
Working from home not always the best option
In June 2014 a study by The Office for National Statistics showed there were 4.2 million home workers in the UK, the highest level since comparable records began.
The majority of self-employed or small business owners will have started their careers working in a busy office or work environment and it can come as a bit of a shock when they find themselves working alone on a daily basis. As a result, there’s been a huge increase in flexible and collaborative workspaces for individuals to share with like-minded, creative and business types.
What is a Work Hub and why do we need them?
A Work Hub offers a shared workspace that usually consists of a desk or office area, which can be booked on a flexible basis such as a week, day or even hour. Some hubs are industry specific, like Unit 7 and make sure you’ll be surrounded by relevant businesses, whilst others can be used by a blend of successful workers in the area. They usually offer, either formally or informally, some type of support to entrepreneurial activities either through informal discussions with other co-workers, or specific events and activities to network and develop ideas.
Although it has become easier and more popular to work from home, there are still times when people need a professional environment to front their business. A Work Hub can be used as a place to meet clients, hold group meetings or to use as a registered address. Letting you gain access to facilities that small business owners and freelancers could not justify for themselves.
Stop, collaborate and listen.
There’s far more to a Work Hub than a desk and Wi-Fi connection though. The rise in shared workspace has developed from the desire for a work environment that is inspiring, and stimulating. Research by ‘Deskmag’ found that when working in a hub style environment 71% of people surveyed said they felt more creative, 62% reported that their measure of work improved significantly, and 90% said their confidence grew. This is down to the fact that work hubs are often filled with supportive communities that enable creative relationships.
Work Hubs provide a relaxed space that encourages informal business collaboration and networking. When working from home, it’s obviously more difficult to meet new people. When you’re working around other freelancers or businesses, you benefit from the opportunity to collaborate or offer your services.
Many freelancers and micro businesses view collaboration as a strong driver for growth and this is reflected in the concept and even design of most shared workspaces. There are generally dedicated areas where employees can socialise, discuss work problems or network with others.
With self-employment numbers predicted to increase by 15% during the next decade and micro businesses now representing 96% of all UK business, the demand for a flexible working environment is set to grow. And while the workforce continues to shift it looks as though traditional office settings and working from home could become a thing of the past.
If you’re interesting in joining us, email firstname.lastname@example.org, call us on 01803 295959 or if you’re chomping at the bit to find out more head over to our ‘Work Here’ page.