Business, Central New York, Community, Technology

Co-working and sharing office spaces: A new trend

By Eshalaxmi Barlingay SYRACUSE, N.Y. (NCC News) – From sharing rides to AirBnB’s, the world is now leaning more towards sharing office spaces. Business professionals are looking at ditching their traditional office spaces.

According to the 2018 Global Co-Working Survey, 1.7 million people are estimated to continue working in around 19,000 co-working spaces. According to Forbes, by 2020, 50 percent of the U.S. workforce will be freelancers; that is, one of every two workers will be freelancers.

And with that surge in freelancers, not all are planning to work from home. That’s why, co-working is now becoming a global trend, used by budding entrepreneurs, freelancers, large companies and individuals looking for a place they can call an ‘office’. Co-working is sharing the same office space, but doing work independently and individually.

The trending co-working and sharing office spaces is pacing in Syracuse as well.

Syracuse CoWorks is among them. Located at 201 E. Jefferson Street, the building is comprised of a large hall, with cubicles and desks for people to use, a kitchen on the side stuffed with free food and lots of coffee, free Wi-Fi to carry on with the work and several couches – to unwind and hang out with officemates.

CoWorks offers rentals to individuals on a daily, weekly or monthly basis. To rent a space, all you have to do is sign up for one of the three membership plans offered by CoWorks, prices ranging from $66 to $200 per month.

Sharing a larger, single office with entrepreneurs and freelancers, becomes much cheaper than renting a whole place to work.

Starting with 10 members in 2012, Syracuse CoWorks has expanded to now host 80 individuals including CNY Chapter of American Institute of Architects.

“This allows local businesses to help support each other,” CoWorks member Frank Cetera said.

Apart from co-working being financially lighter on business professional’s pockets, it also builds community among those sharing the space.

“If somebody comes to me with a project and I can’t handle it, I have somebody to refer them to because we’ve got one of everything here,” CoWorks manager Dallas Bryson said.

With free Wi-Fi, there are also a few ‘perks’ that Syracuse CoWorks offers including yoga classes on Wednesday, Beer and Waffle Fridays and a monthly whiskey event.

“There’s a real push here to have a healthy work-life balance and so we all participate in the social events offered,” Bryson said.