Co-Labs, Utropolis Shah Alam
Without a doubt, there are a few people who need to make tracks in an opposite direction from work while they're out of town. Yet, an increasing number of individuals, whether digital nomads or business travellers, need to discover approaches where they can find a balance with working and being on holiday.
Coworking is the fastest growing trend in the business world. Like any sort of work, it requires attention and complete focus of the individual which cannot be guaranteed when working from home. This is why we are seeing freelancers, small businesses, entrepreneurs, and other startups across Southeast Asia increasingly moving towards coworking environments.
Every human being has all sorts of needs whether they live in town or out of town. “Working alone, together” is a phrase that actually portrays the primary needs of most freelancers, startups, or digital nomads that most of the serviced offices can address. Loneliness or isolation is the reason why people are opting out from a 9-5 corporate job in a traditional office.
Procrastination is a near-universal phenomenon. Who doesn't find their minds wandering, scrolling through their phone, or even working longer on one task to avoid starting another?
Common Ground, Kuala Lumpur
Congratulations! If you're reading this means you've stepped into the future... of workspaces or perhaps you are already here. As cliche as it sounds, there's some merit to that. According to a report by JLL, up to 30% of commercial real estate could be flexible by 2030! The demand for flexible office is also likely to pick up quickly as the startup and gig economy continue to flourish globally. Let's not forget about the fact that the big boys in the industry like IBM, UBS, and Facebook have joined the party. This is a telltale sign that demand from large companies is likely to pick up. For modern Small Medium Businesses (SME), a flexible workspace is a leaner alternative compared to a conventional setup. In comparison, flexible workspaces are far more flexible, affordable, and readily available. For large corporations, one appeal may lie in the hub and spoke model, meaning, their employees are able to work beyond the boundaries of their organization.
As today's technology has developed, and continues to develop, so have our workspaces. In tandem, we've experienced a shift from the traditional 9-5, 5-days-a-week method of working to a much more flexible routine. This means that we're witnessing more people working from home a couple days out of the week, setting up shop in a coworking space, or even working remotely from a beach in Bali.
As flexible workspaces continue to grow in Malaysia (2015-2017 saw a 28% growth in the market), we are seeing an increasing number of coworking spaces in Kuala Lumpur opening their doors (or even expanding) and offering members unique services. On top of the normal offerings that we have come to expect of coworking spaces - such as high-speed WiFi, free coffee, and free water - operators around Kuala Lumpur are finding new ways to differentiate themselves from each other.
In 2008 the elusive Satoshi Nakomoto created Bitcoin, a "peer-to-peer electronic cash system" by using blockchain technology. Fast forward 10 years and you'd be hard-pressed to find someone who hasn't at least heard of something blockchain-related, the most popular clearly being cryptocurrencies. There's even a J-pop girl group that is capitalizing on this new hype, with each member representing a different cryptocurrency - in fact they take payments for their tickets and merchandise solely through cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin and Ethereum.
Whether you're new to the coworking scene or you're a seasoned veteran, it's important to know the differences between the different spaces you make available - because as we all know, coworking spaces aren't simply one big open-layout office. However, for new members, the intricacies of the different types of memberships, i.e hot desk or dedicated desk, may not be as clear cut.