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Since people have been working in offices, there have been trailblazers searching for different ways to structure the workplace. Well, maybe that’s a bit of an overstatement, but it’s undoubtedly true that innovators are always looking for different ways to engage with their environments. Naturally, that extends to the work environment. Enter coworking in Houston, stage right!
In a nutshell, coworking is the practice of shared workspaces. Multiple unrelated organizations work in the same building, often utilizing the operator’s administrative functions. In today’s modern and ever-changing office world, one of the fastest growing alternatives to a traditional office space is coworking spaces.
The coworking industry has become a global phenomenon! Around 2008-2010, more operators joined the market, but in recent years the industry has just exploded. According to Emergent Research, over 1000 new coworking spaces opened in the second half of 2018 – almost half of which are located in the U.S. TechSpace, one of the first operators in the coworking space industry, was established in 1997 and opened in the thriving Westchase district of Houston in 2017.
Houston is a greatly diverse city, on the verge of becoming the third largest in the country by 2021 per analysts. Not only is Houston massive, but it’s also quite spread out. All TechSpace sites are strategically positioned in cities with high business traffic and near living options; TechSpace Houston in particular is nestled on the border of the Energy Corridor with ease of access to i10, Beltway 8, and 59, making getting around the city a walk in the park.
So, where do coworking spaces fit into the grand tradition of office spaces? The way people work and want to work has changed over the years with the increased capabilities of technology as well as the way people want to work. In order to attract top talent and younger demographics, many companies are ditching traditional spaces in favor of the more flexible coworking model.
At TechSpace Houston, our alternative to the traditional office space is made more flexible, hence the name FlexSpace! Coworking/FlexSpace gives employees and employers access to a diversified atmosphere in which to meet with clients, work on projects, and/or collaborate in an ecosystem as inventive and open as it is technical and efficient.
What kinds of companies are best served by coworking spaces? Those in many industries, including both start-ups and established companies, are quite well-suited for coworking in Houston. Since opening in April 2017 at our West Houston location at 2101 CityWest Blvd., we’ve noticed an influx of California companies. Many of these tech-based companies are attracted to TechSpace because of our superior technology infrastructure, access to a large, multi-tenant, 35-acre campus, and the flexible space options from a 1 person FlexSpace seat to small-large office spaces.
As with any major decision, there are important factors to think about when choosing a coworking space. First, look at the size of the office spaces and compare them when looking at other operators. All five-person offices are not equal! Some operators, like TechSpace, have more spacious suites, so what is listed as a five-person office could actually fit up to seven depending on how much space you feel each of your employees actually needs!
You also must consider whether or not the space has room for your company to grow. You may only need a small office now, but as your company scales, can they scale your office space? Customer service is important, too: not all operators are equal when it comes to helping their members. Make sure you will get the support you need for your business!
Employees thrive in coworking spaces due to the creative, inspiring architectural designs of the spaces themselves, as well as floor plans maximized for productivity, and of course a thriving community of like-minded individuals.
At TechSpace Houston, we channel creativity front and center with our bold, vibrant accent colors throughout the building. Orange, red and yellow were specifically chosen to nurture the natural energy needed to push through a tiresome day, while greens and blues were chosen to promote a calming atmosphere. This perfect balance of color schemes keeps a smile on many of our members’ faces.
Speaking of our members, how good is coworking in Houston for networking? Well, coworking is the perfect environment for networking! It is filled with a variety of businesses all with the same goal: growing and succeeding. Member events as well as community events provide opportunities to network and create new business connections without ever leaving the coworking space.
Coworking and community go hand-in-hand because people want to be with people, but they also want to be in an environment where they can succeed and get their work done. Coworking puts those two together, pairing a wide variety of types of people with an environment conducive to trying to accomplish one’s goals.
“TechSpace Houston is as diverse as the city we live in due to the roots upon which it was built. Our Houston site is an assorted group of business professionals all working toward one major goal: to be the best in their industry. Our site has allowed many companies to grow in the two years we’ve been here. We like to think it’s because of the culture we’ve built and how our space relates to the city we call home.” – Bobby Spoden, site manager at TechSpace Houston
Coworking in Houston isn’t just for large companies or start-ups, though. What other uses can coworking spaces provide? Many coworking spaces, including TechSpace, provide on-demand conference rooms for members AND non-members. For those who are working at home but need to meet clients in a professional environment, coworking spaces are an ideal option. At TechSpace, you can book meeting spaces in a variety of sizes by the hour. Virtual services such as mailing addresses, call answering by a professional receptionist, and/or a business phone number are all available.
So what’s in store for the future of coworking? Since the industry is expected to continue to grow in popularity through 2023, a few predictions include:
Is coworking in Houston the right path for your start-up or company? Learn more about why TechSpace’s coworking offices can be the right fit for your business!