So we thought it a good idea to introduce the coworking space concept and answer some questions people often have –
Coworking is an arrangement in which workers from different companies share an office space. allowing cost savings and convenience through the use of common infrastructures, such as equipment, utilities, receptionist, custodial services and parcel acceptance services.
Coworking Spaces are designed to provide a productive and collaborative environment without corporate constraints on what is perceived to be an “office” environment. Coworking offers flexible memberships to suit most needs. With coworking, people work independently but share values and synergy similar goals and objectives.
Coworking is more than just another office space, it is a community centre, a think tank, an opportunity to bounce ideas. It supports you professionally in a way that working from home or in a corporate office cannot.
Coworking spaces offer office and workspace solutions to a range of the business market – and for each segment, the appeal might be slightly different.
For small businesses and startups, coworking space in Nairobi helps them keep their operational costs low. This is because not only do you not have set up costs like fit-out and furniture. You also only pay for exactly the space you need – ie each month how many desks your team need.
They are also flexible i.e. no long leases to commit to.
Everything is included – Coworking spaces provide everything to run a business from meeting rooms to reception services, to storage, to printing, to cleaning etc.
As a startup, you never need to worry about setting up your wifi connection, providing storage for files, providing clean drinking water.
For the freelancer, consultant or solopreneur, coworking is the perfect antidote for those that would otherwise be forced to work alone at home or in a noisy cafe and feeling isolated, unproductive and distracted.
Coworking spaces are also filled with interesting and ambitious people working on all types of business, joining a coworking space in Nairobi is a great way to make new friends, meet potential clients, and even meet potential new business partners! Perfect for freelancers!
Forward-thinking corporates take up coworking spaces due to the benefits to your employees, from increased happiness and productivity to networking opportunities with people outside of their own domains.
There are a couple of situations where a coworking space in Nairobi probably isn’t the best solution for a business.
Firstly, if your business requires a lot of storage of inventory that you would need to have access to and where you’d want customers to be able to view and access, kind of like a store or shop-front. This isn’t very practical in a coworking space.
However, it could be that you have a warehouse or shop front in one location, and then utilise a coworking space for members of your team that don’t need to be located with the rest of your business – such as your marketing or admin department.
Secondly, if your business relies on being able to consult with customers one-on-one where privacy is very key – like a doctor or lawyer or psychologist. This probably wouldn’t be practical in a coworking space where you might struggle to ensure the level of privacy that your customer may want.
In this scenario, it would be better to take up a serviced office space that had separate access from the main space. Our space in Spring Valley, for example, has private offices that can be accessed independently that the main open and shared space. That would be an ideal way to ensure your customers felt comfortable to come and go without walking through a shared coworking space.
We offer two types of coworking plans for those who want coworking space in Nairobi.
Hot Desking – The Flexi Plan:
Flexi Desk Plan: Kshs 20,000 excl VAT + Kshs 20,000 (Security deposit Refunded)
Dedicated Seating – The Fixed Plan:
Fixed Desk Plan: Kshs 25,000 excl VAT + Kshs. 25,000 (Security deposit Refunded)
What we offer in addition to these two options – is more of a virtual office solution. This gives you drop-in access, to the space from 9:00 am – 5:00 pm. It’s suited to those who are really starting out and need to keep costs very low; to those who are often at client offices; or people who already have the main office, but want a secondary site to work from occasionally. It’s called the Club Space, and you can read more about it here.
Your business might also be more suited to serviced offices within a coworking space, which is also some that we offer.
One of the concerns we see from companies looking at the option of a coworking space in Nairobi is how we deal with concerns around privacy. That could be a concern relating to data privacy, or simply that your business ideas might get “borrowed” by competitors. Surprisingly once many begin working from coworking spaces that fear pretty much subsides, as you soon realise that everyone else there is much more focused on their own business to worry about copying anything you’re doing.
What is more, you will realise that opening up and sharing what you’re working on with others in business is actually hugely beneficial. It’s a way for you to build connections and even customers. Plus, getting feedback from your target market or other experienced business owners is something many companies pay a lot for, and in a coworking space, it comes for free if you’re willing to engage with others.
However, if your team and customers really need a private space, sitting in a shared open-plan space might not work for you. In this case, you’re better off looking into what private spaces can be offered to you.
In summary, the best coworking spaces in Nairobi are designed for business – from the lighting to the furniture – every element is thought-through. If you think it can work for your business, the best way to find out is to try it out. Many coworking spaces, like Nairobi Garage, offer tours and free trials. So give it a go – and if it doesn’t suit, well the best thing is that it’s flexible – so the risks are very small.