Commercial Real Estate, Clutch Report

Coworking Space Trends for 2020

November 20, 2019

by Kristen Herhold

Senior Content Developer & Marketer, Clutch

Just under half of coworking employees work in a coworking space 5 days or more per week, and many stay in the same space for several years. WeWork is the most popular coworking space, but smaller coworking companies can provide local benefits to employees.

The idea of coworking spaces has only been around since 2005, but it has grown into an industry of more than 3 million workers across the world.

Coworking spaces provide an office environment and amenities for growing businesses such as marketing agency SchroderHaus, whose 3 full-time employees have worked at Enterprise Coworking in Denver since 2016.

“What I love most about being in a coworking space is the ability to provide my team with so many amenities and comforts without having to make the capital investment, which I simply could not do as a small business,” Founder and Head of Haus Elexis Schroder said.

Shared office spaces are growing in popularity, but what do coworking spaces look like in 2019 and 2020?

Clutch surveyed 500 employees across the U.S. to discover how businesses and employees use coworking spaces.

Our Findings

  • WeWork is the most popular coworking space (39%), but 36% of coworking employees work in smaller, local coworking spaces. Smaller coworking spaces appeal to businesses that prefer to be involved in their local communities.
  • Fewer than one-fourth of coworking employees (22%) only work in a coworking space. This means that most employees use coworking as a supplement to their workspace, not as their sole work location.
  • Just under half of coworking employees (46%) work in a coworking space 5 days or more per week, but larger businesses tend to spend more time working in coworking spaces than smaller or individual businesses.
  • Three-fourths of employees (75%) have worked in their current coworking space for more than 1 year. Businesses and employees are satisfied working in a coworking space.
  • Coworking spaces tend to have a variety of layouts, including open floor plans (52%), private rooms (50%), and cubicle layouts (42%). Different companies and employees benefit from different types of layouts.
  • Coworking offices offer a variety of workspaces to meet employee and business needs, including private meeting rooms (66%), private offices (66%), and small collaboration rooms (60%).
  • Coworking spaces also offer places for breaks and fun: lounge/break rooms (67%), kitchens (58%), and recreation rooms (39%). Employees appreciate areas for both work and play in their coworking space.

WeWork Is the Most Common Coworking Space, but Local, Smaller Coworking Spaces Are Also Popular

WeWork was valued as high as $47 billion and was the most well-known coworking space in the world when news broke that CEO Adam Neumann was mismanaging funds — from flying a private jet with friends to leasing properties he owned to the company.

In the fallout, the company was faced with bankruptcy until SoftBank offered the company a $1.7 billion bailout package, and Neumann was ousted. The company also is expected to lay off up to 4,000 employees in the coming weeks.

Despite WeWork’s struggles, it is the most popular coworking business: 39% of people who work in a coworking space work in a WeWork office.

Top 6 Coworking Spaces

Connection with the local community is important to some businesses when choosing a coworking space: 36% of employees work in a local or single-location coworking business.

Andrew Schuh is a marketing specialist at Focus Property Group, which owns Enterprise Coworking. He says that being a Denver-based business draws local businesses to the coworking space.

“Being local and involved in local events and forming partnerships with local businesses has really helped us,” Schuh said. “We have a local touch that WeWork doesn’t have.”

“We have a local touch that WeWork doesn’t have.”

Enterprise Coworking mixes with the local community and holds events — even weddings.

Coworking weddings

Schroder chose the Denver coworking space as SchroderHaus’s office space because of its local feel.

“We selected Enterprise Coworking as they feel like an authentic part of our community,” Schroder said. “The Enterprise team’s mission is to help member companies reach their full potential, and we believe they’re better by also being a Colorado company.”

Companies like SchroderHaus enjoy the local ties of a smaller coworking company over a bigger one like WeWork.

Coworking Employees Don’t Only Work in Shared Office Spaces

Employees rely on coworking spaces to complete some of their work, not all.

Just 22% of people who work in a coworking space rely on it as their only workspace.

Coworking Employees Tend to Work in Other Types of Office Spaces

About 65% of coworking employees also work in a traditional office space, and 54% work remotely.

SchroderHaus has 10 employees, but just 3 work in the coworking space full-time. The other 7 employees work from home but occasionally come to Enterprise Coworking.

“We do love that Enterprise has enough space and flexibility to accommodate any member of our team, and our clients, who come to the office for meetings or to work for the day,” Schroder said.

Coworking businesses like Enterprise Coworking offer flexibility and opportunities for employees and businesses without requiring them to work there 5 days a week.

Larger Businesses Spend Most of Their Workweek at Their Shared Space

The majority of employees at coworking spaces visit their shared space most days of the week, particularly if they work at a company with more than 100 employees.

More than three-fourths (76%) of coworking employees spend 3 or more days in their coworking space. This includes 46% who spend 5 or more days in their coworking space.

Employees at larger companies are more likely to spend 5 days or more in a coworking space:

  • More than 100 employees: 53%
  • 51 to 100 employees: 48%
  • 11 to 50 employees: 41%
  • 10 or fewer employees: 29%

Employees Who Spend 5 Days or More in a Coworking Space: by Company Size

Many larger businesses don’t allow remote work, so employees tend to spend more time at their designated office space, rather than work from home or other remote locations.

Businesses that work in private suites at Enterprise Coworking are mostly there 5 days per week. Some smaller businesses or individuals who rent coworking space work there less often.

“The majority of members use the space most days, but there are the smaller businesses that come in fewer days per week,” Schuh said. “Our larger members are definitely here full-time, though.”

TrustPilot is Enterprise Coworking’s largest member. It has 800 employees worldwide, 72 of whom work at the Denver coworking space.

Coworking suite

“In Denver, we only work in the coworking space,” Office Assistant Holly Emmons said. “It provides us with everything that we need, and there are enough common areas that we are able to work from anywhere in the building.”

Larger businesses treat a coworking space like their full-time office space. Smaller businesses or individual workers are more likely to treat it as a supplement to their workspace.

Employees Tend to Stay at Their Coworking Space for More Than 1 Year

Some businesses use a coworking space as a temporary, flexible space before moving to a permanent office space. Most businesses, though, stay in a coworking space for at least one year.

Most employees (75%) have been in their current coworking space for at least 1 year, including 18% who have worked in the same coworking space for 5 years or more.

How Long Have Businesses Worked at Their Current Coworking Space?

Only 10% of coworking employees have been in their coworking space for fewer than 6 months and 15% for between 6 months and 1 year.

Emmons said her company has been a member of Enterprise Coworking since the space was founded in 2016. The company has since grown inside the coworking space and recently moved to a larger suite within the office.

“[Upgrading our suite meant] expanding our footprint and allowing us to grow even more,” Emmons said. “We are staying within a coworking space because of what the building offers to us: communal working areas, a café, office support, and great parking options.”

“We are staying within a coworking space because of what the building offers to us: communal working areas, a café, office support.”

The company recently signed a new 5-year contract at Enterprise. It has no plans to leave the coworking space.

Coworking spaces aren’t temporary spaces for all businesses. Many companies stay in a coworking space for several years, even as they grow.

Coworking Spaces' Layouts Meet Any Business's Needs

Many coworking spaces offer a variety of layouts to meet individuals’ and businesses’ unique needs. The coworking membership businesses purchase can determine how much access they have to a space's full layout.

Around half of coworking spaces include open floor plans (52%), private rooms (50%), and cubicles (42%).

Most Common Office Layouts in Coworking Spaces

Enterprise Coworking, for example, offers four types of memberships, from open floor plans to private rooms. Each membership entitles members to different layouts:

  1. Virtual membership: Members have access to meeting space and an address for business cards. They don’t spend most of their working time there so don’t have access to a dedicated office space.
  2. Floater membership: Members don’t have an assigned desk and work in the open floor area.
  3. Dedicated desk membership: Members have an assigned desk and work in the open floor area.
  4. Private office suites membership: Member businesses with 2 or more employees can lease a private office space.

The variety in Enterprise Coworking’s office layout benefits its members’ different needs — from individual workers to larger businesses.

SchroderHouse has the dedicated desk membership, while TrustPilot has the suites membership.

Coworking spac

Schroder appreciates the community feel of the dedicated desks.

“We enjoy this layout, as it provides us each a space to call our own while not feeling secluded from the rest of the community,” Schroder said. “We’ve all become close friends and confidants and often provide one another business advice even though we work in completely different industries. It’s exactly what you’d hope to see in a coworking space.”

“We’ve all become close friends and confidants and often provide one another business advice even though we work in completely different industries.”

TrustPilot, on the other hand, has a suite membership so its 72 employees can collaborate privately.

“Having a suite enables everyone to work together while also allowing us privacy,” Emmons said.

Coworking space’s different layouts can meet any business’s needs, whether for privacy or collaboration.

Coworking Offices' Variety of Spaces Let Employees Work in Places Other Than Their Desk

Coworking spaces tend to provide different types of workspaces, including meeting rooms, private offices, and shared open areas.

Around two-thirds of coworking spaces have private meeting rooms (66%), private offices (66%), and small collaboration rooms (60%).

6 Features of Coworking Spaces

In addition to its private suites and desk areas, Enterprise Coworking offers 14 conference rooms, ranging in size from 4 to 15 people.

Coworking meeting room

It also offers a seating area in its lobby and a library area downstairs that serves as a quiet room.

“The space provides all that our team could need and more, without us having to make the capital investment in creating the space ourselves,” Schroder said.

“The space provides all that our team could need and more, without us having to make the capital investment in creating the space ourselves.”

Employees want spaces to work in addition to their dedicated desk.

Coworking Offices Also Provide “Fun” Spaces to De-Stress Employees

Coworking spaces aren’t all about work; they include play, too, which ultimately leads to better productivity among employees.

Approximately two-thirds of coworking spaces (67%) have lounge/break areas.

67% of coworking spaces have a lounge/break areas

At Enterprise Coworking, there is a lounge area with couches along with a kitchen area and balcony. 

Enterprise also is one of the 39% of coworking spaces that has a recreation area.

39% of coworking spaces have recreation areas

There is a game room at Enterprise Coworking with pingpong tables, shuffleboard, two beers on tap, a popcorn maker, and an Xbox.

Coworking pingpong

Coworking may offer employees more work-life balance than a traditional office space. Coworking employees have excuses to take breaks during the day.

“Our team loves pingpong,” Emmons said. “People take breaks from their busy days to destress for a few minutes and get away from their desks, so it is great having these types of spaces throughout the building.”

Coworking’s “fun” spaces could be why 60% of employees are more relaxed since they began coworking, and 68% can focus better at work.

Employees can concentrate better on their work if they’re able and encouraged to take breaks.

People take advantage of coworking offices’ spaces to both work and relax.

Businesses Can Benefit From Coworking Spaces

WeWork is still the coworking king, but local coworking spaces can provide benefits to tenants, such as local partnerships and sponsorships.

Many employees of small businesses use a coworking space as a supplement to their daily work, while employees at larger businesses tend to use a shared space as their sole workplace.

People are happy overall in their coworking space, and many stay for multiple years, indicating that coworking spaces provide the necessary amenities for businesses to succeed.

Businesses of all sizes can grow and thrive in a coworking space into 2020 and beyond.

About The Survey

Clutch surveyed 501 people who have worked in a coworking space in the past 12 months.

Half of the respondents work in an urban area (49%); 35% work in a suburban area; and 17% work in a rural area.

Sixty-one percent (62%) of respondents are female; 38% are male.

Respondents are from the South (39%), Northeast (22%), West (21%), and Midwest (19%).

Respondents are 18-24 (13%); 25-34 (43%); 35-44 (28%); 45-54 (12%); 55-64 (4%); and 65 and older (1%).

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