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What Is a Shared Workspace and How Is It Different from Other Communal Spaces?

What Is a Shared Workspace and How Is It Different from Other Communal Spaces?

The way we work has changed drastically in the last few years, especially when it comes to where.

With many companies opting for remote or hybrid working, standard offices aren’t nearly as common as they used to be, leading many to opt for alternative options, like shared and communal workspaces. But how does a shared workspace stand out from the rest?

While there’s no universal agreement on the best choice for you to set up and be productive, sharing working space is increasingly prevalent. To better understand the perks of this evolving work environment, we are breaking down just what shared workstations entail, and all the benefits of opting for this flexible work environment for your company. Let's dive right into it with 620 N Lasalle.

What Are Coworking Spaces?

So, what are coworking spaces in the first place?

This popular work environment is often used by start-ups and entrepreneurs as an alternative to the less controlled option of working from home. With a coworking space, companies are able to provide office space, without necessarily having a desk and “section” for each and every person. Instead, a coworking space allows for more flexibility, offering an inexpensive way to promote collaboration and productivity in an open, dynamic environment.

What Are Shared Workspaces vs Coworking Spaces?

We know what coworking spaces are, but how is this different from sharing office spaces?

While coworking spaces are gaining popularity, shared office spaces offer all the amenities. With shared space offices, you will find all the necessary equipment needed in a workday - from copiers and audio-visual equipment to fax machines and office furniture to complete the look. Sometimes, a shared workspace will even have private offices separate from the rest of the space for when you need to hop on a more important business call.

There are different perks to the different workspace types, and it ultimately comes down to what your business needs. If you don’t need all the bells and whistles, coworking spaces can do the job. However, if you want to create a productive environment that still has everything employees need to get the job done, shared workstations are the way to go. It just depends on your needs and preferences.

What Are the Four Types of Shared Workspaces?

shared workspace

The best part about shared space offices is the versatility. In fact, there are four common shared office types in Chicago and other cities that can be utilized for a variety of different companies and individuals.

To help you find the right common workspace, we are breaking down the four most commonly relied upon types. Check it out!

Physical & Collaborative

Physical collaborative communal workspaces, which can also be referred to as co-working spaces, are sections within an office that promote collaboration. With these spaces, employees can more easily work closely together, solving problems and discussing their work conveniently. This style of shared workspace is common across the country, and various   have relied upon this more flexible space as they get their footing in their industry.

Physical & Shared

Another type of workspace is a shared workspace that is used by individuals, which each person can use at various times. Essentially acting as a time-share for office space, shared workspaces can be used by different people, at different times, for different reasons. This is a wonderful choice for those working from home who want a chance to break free from their four walls for an out-of-home space.

Virtual and Collaborative

Next are virtually interactive workspaces. These are shared workspaces involving resources and environments where virtual workers can interact with each other virtually in real-time. This essentially includes everything from virtual meetings, to videos, interactive whiteboards, and any other digital workspace that promotes interactive collaboration.

Virtual and Shared

Last up are virtual and shared workspaces. These collaborative workspaces are not used in a collective way, but instead, provide a space to share as individuals. This is something like a shared spreadsheet or a Google Drive - virtual locations where people can work and share resources at different times and doesn’t have to be a real-time meeting or collaboration. This is commonly used in virtual work environments.

Shared Workspace vs Collaborative Space

The differences between a shared workspace and a collaborative workspace can feel slight, but they're actually is a clear variation between the two.

One of the most common misunderstandings with sharing working space is that many believe it is shared by people at the same time. However, that concept actually is in line with a collaborative workspace. Instead, shared workspaces are used by many different people, all at different times. The workspace remains the same, while those that use it rotate. On the other hand, collaborative workspaces allow many people to use a space with the benefit of working together and collaborating in person.

When we talk about shared workspace, we are referring to individuals using office space for their designated amount of time, then allowing someone else to use the space so that it doesn’t just sit empty and unused. This allows various individuals to get a change of pace and work from an office environment, even if their company isn’t providing the space for them to do so.

Shared Workspace vs Shared Office

Shared Office

While a shared workspace offers workstations for remote employees, freelancers, consultants, and anyone else that doesn’t have a standard office, sharing office spaces is actually a different concept.

With shared space offices, people are offered a much larger workspace. Often, teams can rent a space in a shared office to collaborate and get together, as opposed to each person working alone in a shared workspace.

Shared space offices offer a few different amenities and resources, too. Since these areas are used by smaller companies, they usually include all the technology and perks needed for groups of people. Plus, they are more spacious than individual shared spaces.

The Benefit of Shared Spaces

Now that we know the different types of common workspace options and who they are best suited for, let’s break down the benefits of each option you have. While one space may be perfect for a single individual, others may promote more collaboration. Here’s the breakdown:

  • Collaborative workspace: This option still offers the larger in-house office, but allows people to use it how it best suits them. This is ideal for collaborative moments in business, such as when employees are beginning on a big project, sharing ideas, or meeting with important clients. Basically, anything that involves multiple people meeting is best suited for collaborative workspaces.
  • Shared workspace: This shared space is best for those that do not have a permanent desk of their own in an office. Instead, a shared workspace allows an individual to come in as they need, providing the freedom many employees seek while giving them a place to land when they want to get back to the office environment.
  • Shared office space: Shared space offices are wonderful for lawyers, startups, and more flexible, modern companies that don’t need a permanent office, or are looking to remain within a tight budget. This will offer a traditional workplace and all the resources that come with it when they are needed - perfect for large group meetings and collaborations that

Ultimately, the right shared space for you depends on the number of people involved. If you’re looking for a more collaborative environment, a collaborative workspace or shared office space will be best. However, if you are a solo employee that benefits from flexibility and an office environment, a shared workspace will be just right.

Conclusion

The working environment is ever-evolving, and the workspace options are adjusting with this changing need. As many look to break from their WFH settings, but don’t necessarily want to commit to the old Monday through Friday commute, communal workspaces are thriving as many look for office options that are more on their terms. Because who doesn’t want that?

To explore shared office Chicago locations and for more information on shared workstations vs communal workspaces, 620 N Lasalle has it all. With a range of workspaces to suit your needs, we will help your business thrive in just the right setting. For more on what’s available, contact us today or request a tour online now.

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