Are Coworking Spaces Open?

Businesses have slowly – and thankfully carefully – been coming back to life recently. With more and more COVID-safe shops and offices opening across the country, many have been asking whether coworking spaces are now open. In this article, we’ll take a look at this, alongside what measures have been put in place to ensure that we have safe coworking spaces.

Who is Back in Business?

While we can’t vouch for all coworking spaces, at Areaworks we have been particularly vigilant in our approach to making our areas COVID-safe. As a result, we’re happy to say that all Areaworks locations have been able to open safely. The government-backed map of coworking spaces in London, suggests that just under 500 coworking spaces are currently open in the London area; 270 of which are located in Central London. Now while we can only speak for ourselves at Areaworks, we expect they should be as COVID-safe as us.

Clearly, you’re at your productive best when you’re relaxed within your working environment. You don’t want to be worrying about catching the virus, so we continuously ensure the place is squeaky clean with responsible new rules to keep the virus out of the workplace. Let’s take a look at what sorts of new policies have been implemented.

1.   Risk Assessments

We have thoroughly evaluated, identified and resolved risks within our buildings to our greatest capability. This details have been shared with – and remain available for – all of our members. In line with government regulation, new policies and procedures have been introduced, and while some policies may take some getting used to – these are important.

2.   Keeping It Clean

That’s right, we’ve done a really deep and thorough clean – and it’s going to stay that way. Our cleaners are getting their exercise in with a new, amped-up cleaning routine, and high-traffic areas are cleansed hourly. As for your mitts, hand sanitiser is freely available throughout. And antibacterial spray and wipes are also provided for workspaces and shared amenities such as the all-important coffee machine.

3.   Nothing Physical

Two metres. We’re sure everyone is aware of it, but to be on the safe side, we have placed signs around as a friendly reminder. We’ve sought to maintain responsible social distances while members are at their desks and while eating or relaxing in communal areas. And while we’d urge you to avoid the temptation of the handshake, we do have an abundance of hand sanitiser if you happen to forget.

4.   No Sharing

That’s right, we’ve suddenly become really mean haha. No we haven’t really, but for the time being all hot-desk members will be provided with an assigned workspace to avoid desk sharing. We ask that all shared equipment is wiped down before and after use with the provided antibacterial wipes.

5.   It’s a Sign

Throughout our spaces, you’ll see little reminders on signage, including hand washing, COVID symptoms, the 2m rule and generally how to keep each other safe during the pandemic. What we’re being asked to do goes against our natural human instincts so we need these little signs to help us to stay mindful of the ‘new normal’.

6.   One-Way Only

It might be less convenient than usual, but on the bright side, you might increase your step count! A one-way traffic system is in place throughout our spaces (where viable) to keep you and everybody else as safe as possible. Where practical, we have also dedicated specific entrance and exit doors.

Choosing coworking for your business during these times can bring so many benefits. While it takes the hassle out of having to implement all of these policies and procedures yourself, it is also significantly cheaper than traditional office rents. Again, a little disclaimer because we can only speak for ourselves, but Areaworks have worked out the number of people able to work in the space at any one time, so you don’t have to. Policies are kept up to date and in line with governmental guidance in an effort to keep everyone as safe as possible, while also enabling people to return to the office.

A Glance at How Coworking Reduces Overheads

Everyone wants to work in a clean space, but never before has this been so important in order to keep our friends, our family and our coworkers safe. We understand how frustrated people feel about these social restrictions, but we must keep in mind that it’s not being done without good reason, and it won’t last forever. But for now, we need to keep you, and everybody else, safe.

With the furlough scheme coming to an end and businesses continually bringing their staff back into the workplace, demand for coworking space is increasing. And as more and more businesses realise they don’t have to shell out thousands to rent an entire office, plus employ full-time cleaners and ensure their admin team are keeping up to date with the latest coworking space rules and policies – demand for shared workspaces is being driven up further.

Aside from the admin, cleaning and overhead reductions, coworking spaces also provide inspiring, productive environments with significantly reduced commutes (if you can find one close to where you live!). We have previously looked into the benefits of coworking, for both employers and employees (you can read more about that here). But the pro’s of opting for hassle-free coworking solutions are numerous, particularly as we are now faced with the challenge of a recession while COVID is still ongoing.

If you’re thinking of moving to a coworking space, take a look at our amazing space across London. Get in touch or book a tour, we’d love to show you around (at a safe distance of course)!

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