What are the benefits of working from home? Being able to load the dishwasher on between Zoom meetings? Take the dog for a walk while you put your ‘out of office’ notification on? How about poor posture, ‘tech neck’ and increased stress? According to a study recently released by the job discovery platform DirectlyApply, these are some of the potential impacts of remote working.
Lack of social connections, poor workspace ergonomics and long periods stuck at home can all have a negative impact on our wellbeing. This is where a well considered co-working space can be so valuable. In the early days of lockdown, many people had to hastily conceive makeshift workspaces and they are already starting to take their toll. Working at the kitchen table means you can linger on your laptop right up until dinner. That cool, quirky chair you chose is contributing to an aching back and shoulders. The screen you peer into daily seems to be shrinking as the weeks go on…
In lockdown, many have discovered the freedom to plan our own working day. Co-working offers us these benefits and also steps up into the space where home working falls short. Maintaining a work-life balance is tough when your desk is a few steps from your bed and those unexpected collaborations that spring from conversations at the watercooler simply can’t happen.
DESIGNED FOR WORKER WELLBEING
The Workplace, our co-working space in the centre of Cheltenham, has been designed to overcome the downfalls of home working and magnify the highlights. Workplace wellbeing is important to us; our naturally bright and airy space helps to combat Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS). Herman Miller chairs provide customisable support and our smart desks can be pre-set with up to three height preferences and will even remind you at set intervals to change position. The desks come with 24″ monitors that you can adjust to avoid the dreaded tech neck-shoulder pain resulting from being hunched over a laptop.
As social beings, we naturally want to connect with others; the impacts of social isolation include high blood pressure, heart disease, anxiety and a weakened immune system. In The Workplace, the watercooler and coffee machine provide traditional landmarks for post-weekend chats while our Slack community is where we arrange socials. Over lockdown we held regular Zooms so members could check-in and chat if they felt like it.
ENABLED BY THE LATEST TECH
The latest tech is what makes The Workplace such a flexible, secure and efficient workspace. Covid-19 has ushered in the age of the video call, which makes access to a fast, secure and reliable connection vital. Excellent internet access is something we’ve always prioritised at The Workplace; ours is actively managed 24/7 and has four levels of firewall. No more blurry Google Hangouts or your connection dropping out just as an action plan is being discussed.
Tech wizardry also gives our members the flexibility to book and choose a desk online when they want. There are quiet areas, smaller and larger spaces so that members can select a desk according to the kind of work environment they prefer. A cloud-based door access system means members come and go as they please.
BENEFITS FOR COMPANIES
Access to secure, hi-tech working spaces on a flexible basis is becoming a serious consideration for many companies. Inflexible and premium-rate leases on corporate property seem less attractive in the post Covid-19 future. The flexible membership plans of spaces such as The Workspace will be an increasingly attractive option for companies looking to reduce the number of employees permanently based in corporate HQs. Even organisations that previous spurned remote working are reconsidering the future as their successfully adapt to remote working.
Like all professional workplaces, we’ve followed Government guidance for working safely during Covid-19 to ensure our stay members safe and productive. Many of our members are back in The Workplace to capitalise on the benefits of remote working while avoiding the pitfalls. We think co-working is the best way to blend the flexibility of home working with the advantages of a stimulating, friendly and innovative office space. Okay, we haven’t figured out how our members can load the dishwasher remotely while they are here but with a community of software developers in The Workplace, we can work on it!