From start-ups to large corporations, coworking is a solution that can support a wide range of businesses. Micro businesses are no different and for some, coworking can be a game changer.
To be considered ‘Micro’ in the UK, a business must meet at least two of the following criteria: having a turnover of £632,000 or less, showing £316,000 or less on its balance sheet or employing 10 or fewer employees.
Given these criteria, purchasing expensive office space is rarely on the agenda for micro businesses, particularly where the work can be done remotely. It is more common for them to be operated out of people’s homes, small private offices or even free public locations such as coffee shops and libraries.
However, coworking offers the chance to access office space and meeting rooms under an affordable, flexible rental model for companies of all sizes.
This opens up huge possibilities for micro businesses, as it allows them to work in a productive environment, meet with clients in a professional location and bring members of their team together who might previously have had no choice but to work remotely.
Founder of Touch Network and SO Fourteen member Debs Carter says: “I’ve always worked in coffee shops, nowadays I find it is harder to do so – they are often busy and often the music is just way too loud to concentrate. It’s alright for emails and ‘light touch’ work, but when I want to concentrate it doesn’t work so well anymore.
“It feels like a treat to come here and use the time to concentrate on work – much easier to concentrate than it has been most of my working life in a coffee shop!”
Coworking also gives micro businesses a chance to collaborate and interact with other small businesses in their niche, and even potential clients or partners. The open, communal aspect of coworking encourages members to interact, and often networking events will be hosted or promoted through coworking offices.
As well as a professional environment, coworking spaces offer other perks to the members who work there. Not only will the office basics be provided, such a high speed Wi-Fi, comfortable seating and large desks, they also often include refreshments, breakfast and other small perks with the memberships. These are the types of extras that the smallest businesses may struggle to offer their employees, but that can have a large impact on wellbeing.
The sense of community offered can be invaluable to micro businesses, with local discounts, business support and even just a friendly ear contributing to their success. Many individuals find themselves thriving in a coworking environment where they feel supported and encouraged.
At SO Fourteen, we place great importance on our community and the relationships we build with our members, whether they use the space for one day or a year. Speaking of our community manager and coworking staff, one member said: “Oksana and all of the staff are brilliant and always on hand to help and share a smile, I highly recommend the space.”
If you’re looking for a professional base for your micro-business, we’d love to invite you to a tour of SO Fourteen! Book a tour here or give us a call on 023 8112 5014 to arrange a suitable time.