The Rise of Coworking Spaces and the Gig Economy

gig economy

This is a guest post for the MELD Coworking blog written by Keilah Keiser.

In most metropolitan cities around the world, coworking spaces are available as work areas for people to share. In fact, there are currently more than 35,000 coworking spaces available, with more being created all the time. And it’s a good thing. With the success of the gig economy, more people than ever are looking for an office environment to work from.

Why is coworking so popular?

One reason that coworking spaces are on the rise is because of the gig economy. With the gig economy, people are finding themselves working outside of the office space they’re used to. And for many of these independent freelancers, working from home isn’t the best option. A home office can mean too many distractions and less productivity.

Other freelancers are more successful and productive when they have to leave home and head to an office environment. While leasing office space is an option, the costs are usually too high for gig workers to fit into their budget.

And this brings coworking spaces into the picture. These spaces provide the solution for several problems, giving freelancers the perfect opportunity to work in an office area and stay within their budget.

meeting room austin
Most coworking spaces also have meeting rooms, like the one pictured at MELD Coworking, where freelancers, entrepreneurs, and remote workers can meet with clients.

Shared and flexible space also lets people avoid the loneliness that can come with working for yourself. Freelancers are more productive and socially happy when they work in an environment where they’re surrounded by people of the same mind. Gig workers share the highs and lows of working for themselves and being able to share their experiences with others is psychologically healthy.

Networking also plays a role here – talking to people who work in all types of industries can open doors to new opportunities and new clients.

Coworking Space Wherever You Work

One of the biggest benefits of the gig economy is the flexibility to work remotely from wherever you want. For gig workers who find themselves traveling for work, there comes the issue of where to work when you’re in another city for a project. While Airbnb provides a great solution for accommodation, it’s not always the ideal resolution for workspace.

With coworking space being available in most large cities around the world, freelancers have the ability to use these spaces when on the road, staying productive and being able to network with other gig workers they probably wouldn’t meet any other way.

Overview of Coworking Spaces

In 2018, coworking space in the U.S. accounted for more than two-thirds of office occupancy gains.  This number is expected to be even higher by the end of 2019. Currently the top cities around the world for coworking space growth are:

  1. London, UK
  2. New York City
  3. Toronto, Canada
  4. Austin, TX
  5. Denver, CO
  6. Dallas TX

In the coming years, you can expect to see even smaller cities opening flexible coworking space as the gig economy becomes the norm for workers rather than the traditional 9-to-5 job working for a company or organization.

Want to find out more about coworking spaces and how you can better utilize this space in your freelance career. Check out this guide to the gig economy which goes into greater detail about the benefits for gig workers.

Keilah Keiser headshot

Keilah Keiser is both a freelance and full-time content writer covering topics that range from startup funding to business development. When she’s not behind the computer, you’ll find her hiking with her dog.

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