A study of around 2,500 businesses found that nearly two thirds of small and medium sized companies only hire one person. Accountants and marketers don’t need to be hired full time; the freelance market is thriving thanks to the internet and cloud servers. Businesses can wait till a situation arises, search for potential employees and hire short term staff. About 41% of businesses are able to hire short-term employees who can work from home. Saving energy and money is important in these tough economic times which has led to many small businesses sharing office space.

Sharing office space ensures the running costs are downsized because everything from the rent to bills, cleaning, and recycling costs are spread between you. The office boiler will be heating the same space, but the costs will be split between multiple businesses so you won’t have to cover the costs alone. 

However, if your business consists of just one or two people then you might want to ask yourself whether a shared office is truly necessary. Why not work from home?

Offices are important to some businesses. They can be rented in useful locations and add a sense of legitimacy and prosperity to a business. This could be especially important and effective when meeting clients; shared offices maintain this need and save money in comparison to a private office building. Meeting clients in your home office or living room with the cat asleep in the corner, may not present the professional image you are hoping for. Importantly, offices also separate work life from home life and create a professional environment to work in – it can be so easy to get distracted at home!

Working at home may be particularly beneficial to new businesses. Energy savings could be even greater with a home office. You will save transportation costs to and from work, and your ‘rent’ and energy costs will be within your typical mortgage and energy bills. The collective energy cost of a serviced building may also be more than you actually spend. By working at home you could truly manage your energy costs closely and if you want to make energy-saving improvements you can. Office building boilers could be inefficient and wasteful, gradually costing you money, and you wouldn’t even know it.

Shared offices provide a cost-effective, professional environment to work in, but the possibility of a home office should also be food for thought.

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