So, you’ve decided to start running your small business from a coworking space.
That’s one big decision made, but now you’re faced with another: which coworking space will be best for your venture?
Luckily, there’s help available if you feel overwhelmed by the choice – and with hundreds of coworking spaces open across the country, choice is something you aren’t short of.
Rather than independently carrying out a search for the right space, you might decide to enlist the help of a coworking office broker – also known as a coworking agent.
But what do you need to know about coworking agents?
This article will cover:
What is a coworking office broker?
Coworking office brokers and coworking agents are organisations which connect business owners who are looking for a new workspace with the right coworking space for them, at the best price possible.
Not only do coworking agents offer this service to business owners, but they also provide advertising services to coworking space owners.
They do this by listing spaces on any online search databases they may have, advertising the space through newsletters, social media and other marketing, and of course, directling potential customers their way.
How do coworking office brokers work?
Wondering what’ll happen after you get in touch with a coworking agent, and what exactly they’ll be able to do for you? These are the four basic stages of working with a coworking office broker…
Step one: Getting to know you and your needs
First off, your coworking agent will want to know all about your business and its office space needs.
Depending on how they work, they’ll either arrange a call with you, arrange to meet face-to-face, or have you provide information online.
It’s likely that your agent will ask you about factors such as:
- What your business does and how it operates
- Your budget
- How much space you think you’ll need
- Where you’d like to be located
- What you’re looking for in a space (amenities, atmosphere, etc)
- Your plans and forecasts for future growth
Step two: Finding suitable options
Based on what the broker has learned about your workspace needs and your future plans, it’ll search the market to find ideal coworking space options to share with you.
Some coworking agents are connected with thousands of spaces across the UK (and beyond), leaving them with plenty of options to explore. When shopping around for brokers to use, it’s worth considering how many office space providers they work with.
Step three: Arranging your viewings
If possible, your agent will contact the coworking spaces that you like the look of on your behalf, and arrange slots for you to go and take a look around them.
If you’d like to have a free trial day at the space, or are keen to chat to current residents to get a clearer feel for what working there will actually be like, be sure to let your coworking office broker know.
Step four: Negotiating for the best price
Finally, your coworking office broker will negotiate with your favoured workspace on your behalf, utilising the relationship they have with it to negotiate the best deals they can for you.
How much do coworking office brokers cost?
It would be easy to assume that a coworking office broker might cost you a fair bit, considering the fact that they’re providing you with a service (not to mention all the benefits that come with this service).
However, one of the great things about coworking agents and office brokers is that the majority are completely free to work with.
That’s right – rather than making revenue from their business owner customers, coworking agents and office brokers take fees from the workspace owners and landlords that they work with, in exchange for sending new members and tenants their way.
What are the benefits of working with a coworking office broker?
We’ve covered what coworking agents and office brokers are, how they work, and how much they typically cost (i.e. nothing!).
But you might still be wondering why you’d choose to work with one, instead of simply seeking out and applying for coworking space yourself. After all, you know what your business needs better than anyone, right?
Actually, it can be said that there are plenty of great reasons to work with a coworking agent or broker. For example…
They can get you better deals
A key part of what they do, coworking office brokers know how to successfully negotiate.
Having built beneficial working relationships with the workspaces they advertise, brokers are in a great position to haggle a lower price for you.
They’re experienced in the workspace sector
As you’d expect, coworking office brokers should have plenty of experience in singling out the most fitting coworking spaces. After all, many have been matching up their clients with their ideal offices for years.
This means that an experienced broker will know exactly what to look for in a workspace – and what to avoid.
Not to mention that they should understand the more technical side of workspace leasing inside out.
So you don’t have to worry about ensuring all the fiddly I’s and T’s are dotted and crossed: a knowledgeable broker will have everything covered.
They have plenty of connections
With hundreds (if not thousands) of office spaces on its radar, it’s probably safe to assume that a coworking office broker is aware of more potentially excellent coworking spaces to try out than you are.
This means that, through a broker, you might end up exploring an option that turns out to be perfect – and one you’d never have even glanced at on your own.
They can save you time
Running a business is time-consuming enough without the added pressure of having to find and compare coworking spaces for your office upgrade.
Coworking office brokers do all of this for you, meaning you can spend valuable time working on your business instead.
They can provide you with insight into your own needs
On learning more about your business and its plans for growth, a broker might be able to advise you on the size and type of workspace that will suit you well (rather than just taking your instruction on what you’d like).