• ‘Coworking to transform corporate real estate’

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    AS the demand for coworking spaces continues to rise globally, coworking is expected to become an integral part of corporate real estate, according to real estate services firm Jones Lang Lasalle (JLL).

    In a report, JLL noted that demand for coworking spaces has been driven by the growth of tech and creative industries and as well as the changing nature of work.

    Coworking is a business services provision model that involves individuals working independently or collaboratively in shared office space, according to WhatIs.com.

    JLL noted that collaboration and flexibility are some of the main factors driving companies to turn to the use of shared spaces or coworking spaces.

    Citing data from a survey by CoreNet, 63 percent of companies said the main reason for using shared office space is the ability to collaborate.

    Similarly, in a poll by JLL, 74 percent of respondents said collaborating or thinking, talking and brainstorming create the most value for an organization.

    “Coworking is conducive to knowledge sharing, provides access to new networks, and allows companies and their employees to tap into ideas they would not normally have exposure to,” JLL said.

    Meanwhile, the growing demand for flexibility is also influencing companies to turn to coworking spaces, according to JLL. This is driven by the rise of mobile technologies and personal devices that make working from remote various locations more possible.

    “Companies are being challenged to support more mobile and flexible forms of working,” JLL said. “There is also growing pressure to bring more flexibility to the real estate portfolio and create greater volumes of on-demand space.”

    JLL noted that 64 percent of corporate real estate leaders affirmed that there is a growing appetite to drive flexibility through their real estate portfolios.

    “Coworking can help satisfy this growing demand for agility, fluidity, and liquidity of space, whilst allowing companies to experiment in a ring-fenced environment without the need for organisation-wide change,” JLL said.

    Coworking also offers companies cost-reducing benefits because shared space reduces operating costs while offering a more efficient utilization of space.

    As the benefits of coworking continue to attract companies, global coworking space providers have expressed their intentions of expanding their operations in order to cater to the growing demand.

    Citing a report from Deskmag in 2015, JLL noted that 61 percent of coworking space providers said they are planning to expand their operations this year, while 80 percent noted that they expect to see an increase in their number of members this year.

    “With a growing number of companies looking to tap into these benefits, it is only a matter of time before coworking becomes an integral part of the corporate real estate toolkit,” JLL said.

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