The coworking industry has been significantly affected by the coronavirus pandemic. The demand for shared workspaces has decreased, with more and more people deciding to work from home. However, as things slowly get back to normal, such spaces might prove to be an answer to avoiding financial disasters.

What does the future hold for coworking spaces? After the corona outbreak, we can expect major changes to occur within this industry. We are talking about changing the space layout to allow workers to maintain the six-foot rule, as well as making sanitation a top priority. Coworking space physical security will represent an important objective, as you will be able to read below.

A Safe And Healthy Work Environment Through Adequate Hygiene Measures

The providers of coworking spaces will have to take a wide range of hygiene measures to ensure the work environment is both safe and healthy. Frequently-used areas will be frequently disinfected, as well as touchpoints (doorknobs, the buttons on the elevator, desk surfaces). 

Thermometers might be used to measure the temperature of those coming into the respective space. Now, more than ever, it is essential for such facilities to prevent corona outbreaks. Health screenings might also be imposed for new workers, and free health checkups can be offered as an additional measure. 

It is essential to revise the space policies, including in terms of hygiene. Many providers have decided to use visual information, such as posters, so as to remind workers of simple rules to follow. For example, a poster can remind workers to wash their hands with soap and water, as this is the most effective method of preventing the virus from spreading. 

Layouts That Permit Social Distancing 

Coworking spaces have been designed to accommodate a lot of people and, in today’s context, this can be an issue. For this reason, it might be necessary for the layouts to be changed. The idea is to increase the available space for each member, so that the social distancing rule can be respected.  

The modified layout will allow workers to keep a minimum social distance, avoiding direct contact. The work stations will have to be more dispersed, and people to respect these rules. Large groups will not be allowed, and communal areas will be restricted to more than a couple of people. 

A Complex Range Of Virtual Services

To survive, more and more providers of coworking spaces have decided to offer a complex range of virtual services. For instance, they can offer the infrastructure and technology necessary to hold online meetings. Workers benefit tremendously from the introduction of such opportunities, while providers enjoy the additional revenue. 

Improvements, From Small To Big 

Providers of coworking spaces have a major challenge ahead of them. They need to offer a work environment that is safe, reducing the risk of contamination down to a minimum. Investments will have to be made in various improvements, from sensor-based faucets and touchless soap dispensers in the bathrooms to more effective HVAC systems, with state-of-the-art purification technology. 

Policies That Address Mental And Physical Health 

For many people, the main benefit of working in a shared space was related to being part of a community. Social isolation plays a negative role on mental health, and returning to work is not that easy. The policies within coworking spaces have to address these issues as well. 

It will be necessary to develop an enhanced cleaning protocol, as well as use visual representations to educate workers on the importance of social distancing. Personal protective equipment might be offered to help everyone feel safe. 

Physical Security, A Major Objective To Consider

Coworking spaces are defined by permanent traffic, with people coming and going. The corona pandemic increased the need for physical security, forcing providers to opt for complex solutions. Access control systems, including door readers and smart locks, represent innovative solutions for such spaces. 

One can install a full mobile system, allowing workers to gain access to the space by using their smartphone. Smart locks represent a cost-effective alternative as well. Moreover, the use of such systems can reduce the risk of unauthorized access and additional contamination. 

After the coronavirus pandemic subsides and things get back to normal, it is guaranteed coworking spaces will become even more popular. However, it is necessary to readjust our way of thinking and take the necessary measures to ensure a safe work environment. We have the opportunity to emerge more productive from this challenge, so it would be a shame not to take it. 

References:

https://allwork.space/2020/04/how-coworking-spaces-will-change-after-covid-19/

https://www.officernd.com/future-of-work/coworking-post-covid-19/

https://www.linkedin.com/feed/news/the-future-of-shared-workspaces-4106897

https://blog.liquidspace.com/5-changes-coworkers-will-expect-from-coworking-spaces-post-covid-19/

https://www.forbes.com/sites/danestangler/2020/04/03/here-are-three-reasons-covid-19-makes-coworking-spaces-even-more-important/#37681b2c33ac

https://hypepotamus.com/community/newnormal-what-is-the-post-pandemic-future-of-coworking-spaces-and-membership-communities/

https://www.stonesoup.io/2020/05/07/why-flexible-workspace-will-emerge-stronger-from-covid-19/