Coworking in South East Asia: The Future of Office Spaces

Feb 16, 2016 10:00:00 AM / by Nicole Adarme

The landscape of the traditional workplace is currently changing and the usual cubicle-clad offices we’ve become accustomed to are being reimagined as a collaborative environment where professionals and small businesses co-exist, collaborate and build a new type of community. Welcome to coworking, the future of office spaces.



Cowerkz King George’s Avenue, Singapore


In recent years, there has been a surge of up and coming businesses and startups being built in Southeast Asia. Investors from all over the world are drawing interest in starting a company here due to the generally lower cost of living and the budding technological community in the region. The need for these small firms and startups to avoid long leases and heavy investments during their transitional stage has led to an increased demand for leaner and more efficient solutions. Enter coworking, a movement that started in the United States where a space can be used by people from different professional backgrounds as an office, sharing the amenities that come with it for a certain fee. Coworking has sprouted in major cities throughout the region including Kuala Lumpur, Ho Chi Minh, Bangkok, Bali, Singapore and Metro Manila, offering affordable and diverse work environments to the rising number of startups, freelancers, entrepreneurs, and mobile professionals needing a venue for business operations.

What is coworking?

Coworking is a convenient and less traditional way of renting an office space at a much lower cost. Generally, you pay a fee to use a space for the day or rent desk space on a monthly basis. It’s not limited to the usual office hours since most coworking offices offer 24/7 access to their facilities.

The Benefits of Coworking


With the rising demand for talent in Southeast Asia for various fields such as technology, creatives, marketing, and e-commerce, jobs are lining up from clients across the globe offering opportunities and high income. Coworking allows 24/7 access to their spaces for you to work with clients coming from different time zones, or to do your tasks at a time that’s suited to your lifestyle.



JustCo, Singapore


Collaboration is at the heart of the coworking philosophy. Sharing a space with people from different professional backgrounds and expertise can be pretty exciting, even more so in Southeast Asia with its young population, varied demographic, and good mix of local and foreign businessmen working alongside each other. These diverse individuals create a fertile ground for collaboration and knowledge sharing across different fields, which can inspire you to approach your work differently and get better results.



PenBrothers, Makati, Manila


Due to the economic growth that the region is experiencing, there has been a scarcity of office spaces for smaller businesses and startups. Most landlords prefer to rent their places to more established companies and the high leases have made it more difficult to find a spaces that won’t eat up the small business’ capital. Coworking has been extremely attractive to SMEs and startups for this reason, because they get access to all the amenities they need to run a business without the budget restrictions and long lease terms. They have fast and reliable internet connection, fax and printing services, and even use of the reception for receiving mail or calls. One of the most useful elements is the conference and meeting room setting where businesses can invite clients, partners and potential investors, offering only the most professional setup.



Springboard, Singapore



When Deskmag conducted a global coworking survey, the results showed a favorable response from professionals who rented a coworking space in terms of productivity. Based on the results, 71% of participants reported a boost in creativity since joining a coworking space, while 62 percent said their standard of work had improved. Other notable findings include:

  • Almost 90% of coworkers report an increase in self-confidence
  • 70% of coworkers feel healthier than they did working in a traditional office
  • 64 percent of coworkers are better able to complete tasks on time

With the ever-present distractions and the dullness of a traditional office cubicle, coworking offers a great alternative as a venue where you can be your most productive. There’s plenty of room to find your groove, get in the zone, and finish all your tasks. You also get to ask for a second opinion from other professionals and start spreading the word about your business.



Impact Hub, Makati, Manila


The Evolution of Office Space

With the shift in work culture, there are bound to be some changes in how and where people want to work. At The Hub, a coworking space in Singapore, about 70 CEOs have paid a visit to learn how they can apply this type of work environment to their offices and create a more productive and collaborative community among their employees. Coworking has shown large companies that people are more innovative and are able to produce better results when they are exposed to other like-minded professionals; they benefit from collaboration and the sharing of ideas. The concept of office space is not dying because of coworking, instead it is evolving to creating better places to work and as a result, better ways to work.


FlySpaces can connect you with several different kinds of office space to meet the needs of your business. For those interested in trying out the coworking scene at low- to mid-range prices, there are tons of options!


Want to learn more? Go to and see hundreds of unique coworking spaces available in Manila and Singapore.


Topics: Southeast Asia, Coworking Space, Coworking, future of office, flexible

Nicole Adarme
Nicole Adarme

Nicole is a seasoned marketer who writes to inspire and help readers discover the rapidly developing workspace industry in Southeast Asia. She is proud to work with a company that empowers other businesses to grow and operate more effectively.

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