At first glance of a post-pandemic world, disruptions to how we work and live are far from gone.
Since the onset of Covid, we’ve endured an additional range of crises. From the July riots to the war in Ukraine and the subsequent rise in petrol and food costs. Then there’s also the recent flooding in KwaZulu-Natal to consider, and of course, our long-term experience with loadshedding.
These challenges have certainly built our resilience and increased our ability to adjust to changing factors, conditions, or environments. Undoubtedly, the world of work here in South Africa has also been permanently changed. With flexible work arrangements, such as coworking, now much more attractive than ever before.
Mzansi’s coworking world
Over the last decade, coworking spaces in South Africa have steadily cropped up across the country – it’s not just a lifestyle solution reserved for those based in the heart of the Mother City or Johannesburg.
“Coworking spaces in South Africa offer more than just bottomless coffee,” says our Venture Workspace Founder, Louis Fourie.
“Unlike standard offices, these flexible hubs are thoughtfully designed to promote productivity, offering everything you could ever need to help mitigate the impact of external disruptions to your workflow.”
The ancillary services of coworking spaces in South Africa include filtered water, high-speed reliable connectivity (fibre), air quality (air-con), comfortable desks, communal kitchens, board rooms, relaxation areas, printers, scanners, and on-site support teams. And that’s only just the start.
“Many of us have implemented the use of backup generators for when the electricity cuts,” Louis adds. “However, what makes the coworking solution most attractive isn’t just the high-end technology or support features. It’s also about being within a supportive environment where you can stay connected with other professionals. Even amidst what’s happening in the country or the world.”
Coworking and its costs
With the rising cost of inflation, coworking spaces in South Africa have quickly become an economical lifeline for business owners, freelancers, and smaller corporate teams trying to stay afloat.
“One of the selling points for our members is that they only pay for the time and space they need instead of being locked into a long-term lease and sinking major capital into a standard office space,” Louis explains.
With traditional offices come traditional expenses: water and electricity, levies, fibre & internet, cleaning services, maintenance, equipment, such as printers, and stationery. By contrast, coworking packages offer short team lease options. They are all-inclusive and tailored to suit your individual needs as a business.
“Coworking is ideal for businesses that scale and descale frequently, freelancers who come and go, or international visitors dropping in from abroad. We’ve also crunched the numbers. Coworking can save you anything from 20% and upwards as opposed to operating a traditional office here in Cape Town.”
Interestingly, collaborative spaces have also become the bedrock for many neighbourhood areas. “In our case, we’ve established offices in the suburbs around the CBD so that our clients can be close to home, avoid traffic, and cut commuting costs,” Louis adds.
Aside from the rise in people working as independent contractors, or starting their own businesses. Many have recognised an urgent need to be more agile as a matter of survival. Coworking spaces in South Africa, it seems, can remedy that.
“If there’s one thing we’ve learnt over the past two years is that South Africans need a place for their employees to call a creative home that’s not in their home,” says Louis. “A place where they can use their time effectively, come together to collaborate, and most importantly rekindle that shared culture,” he concludes.
Find a coworking space near you
Coworking spaces in South Africa have continued to become a lifeline for business professionals across the country. If you’re in need of an alternative around Cape Town, contact us here. Our team is on standby to assist.