The Global Coworking Survey 2015/2016

We caught up with the Coworking Europe Conference which took place in Milan recently. One of the highlights was the preliminary results of the Global Coworking Survey presented by Deskmag’s Carsten Foertsch. The survey is ongoing but the initial data which is very promising for future of the coworking industry.

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Amazing Image: SohoWorks London

The Growth of Coworking Spaces:

The Number of coworking spaces worldwide is now 7,800 and the Average Coworking space has around 30% more members than two years ago.

There are approximately 510,000 people coworking across the world, up from 295,000 at the same time last year.

The average coworking space is just over 33 months old (2 years ago it was 22 months)
The largest coworking spaces (measured by number of members) are in Asia and the smallest are in Africa.

The worldwide growth rate is up 36% on last year.

Trust Indicators and Community Development:

Almost 70% of coworkers feel part of their coworking community for example, 51% of people are happy to leave their mobile phone unattended in their coworking space.
67% of members think that almost all other members know their first name. 75% of members expect casual small talk and interaction between themselves and other members and 68% expect also expect that there will be some form of knowledge sharing and collaboration.

How People are Working:

Private offices and team offices are becoming a popular addition to the open workspace format although 78% of members still work in open space.
More and more employees are using coworking spaces and fewer people are working on their own. 73% of coworkers turn up at least 3 times a week and 44% work full time. 11% of coworkers have a package with a limited number of days per month.
76% of members will engage at some level with the hosts or managers of a coworking space and 67% are not planning to leave their coworking space.

Future Intentions:

Profit is not the main motivator for an operator to set up a coworking space. Rather, the main reason operators open a coworking space is because they want to be connected to be to other people. The majority of operators still undertake other work as well as operating the space and full time operators account for just 1/3 of spaces.

Competition & Profitability:

58% of operators say the number of coworking spaces in their region is just right. 27% say there are too few and 14% say there are too many. Sentiment about profitability shows that operators believe that about one third of spaces struggle to become profitable.

The Buildings where Coworking Spaces are Housed:

The majority of coworking spaces are located in buildings that are over 21 years old and many also in buildings that are older than 50 years. Many spaces start in buildings that were previously unused and 49% of locations have been vacant for 6 months at least before the coworking space opened.

82% of coworking spaces lease their space from a Landlord and the average lease taken out by a coworking space operator is for 54 months.

25% of coworking spaces have moved to a new location at least once and 17% of spaces are located in residential buildings.

Forecast for 2016:

61% of spaces plan some form of expansion in 2016 and almost 80% of spaces expect to win more members next year.

Featured Image: Felisa Cowork Barcelona

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