Navigating Your Workspace Options: Coworking vs Shared Office Space

During the pandemic, businesses embraced flexible work arrangements like never before. Two popular choices that often come up in discussions are coworking spaces and shared office spaces. While these terms are sometimes used interchangeably, there are distinct differences between the two, catering to different preferences and needs. 

Let’s explore the differences between coworking spaces vs shared office spaces to help you decide which option is best suited for you! 

What is the Concept of Coworking Space?

flexible coworking spaces in chicago

Coworking spaces are vibrant, community-oriented environments where individuals from different companies and industries work alongside each other in a shared space. These spaces are known for their open layouts, communal amenities, and opportunities for networking and collaboration. 

Who Should Rent a Coworking Space?

Coworking spaces often attract freelancers, startups, remote workers, and small teams who value flexibility, community, and a dynamic work environment.

Need a workspace for just yourself or your team? Our flexible coworking space, coLab, provides options starting from a single desk, allowing you to collaborate and connect with like-minded professionals in a dynamic environment.

Benefits of Coworking Spaces

  1. Community and Networking Opportunities: Coworking spaces foster a sense of community where professionals from diverse backgrounds come together. This environment promotes networking, collaboration, and exchanging ideas, leading to potential partnerships and business opportunities.
  2. Flexibility and Scalability: Coworking spaces offer flexible membership options, allowing individuals and businesses to choose plans that suit their needs. Whether you need a desk for a day or a dedicated office for your team, coworking spaces provide scalable solutions that can adapt to your changing requirements. 
  3. Cost-Effectiveness: Coworking spaces often eliminate the overhead costs associated with traditional office leases, such as utility bills and maintenance fees. This cost-effectiveness makes coworking spaces an attractive option for individuals and small businesses looking to minimize expenses.

What is a Shared Office Space?

private office suites for lease in chicago

On the other hand, shared office spaces offer more privacy and exclusivity compared to coworking spaces. In a shared office space, businesses or individuals rent private office suites or workstations within a larger office facility. 

While shared office spaces still offer the benefits of shared amenities and a professional environment, they provide greater control over the workspace and a higher level of privacy, making them ideal for businesses that require a dedicated and secure environment.

Our stunning collection of furnished and unfurnished Ready-To-Wear Suites offers move-in-ready solutions for businesses looking for immediate occupancy and convenience.

Benefits of Shared Office Spaces

  1. Privacy and Security: Shared office spaces offer greater privacy and security than coworking spaces. With dedicated office suites or workstations, businesses can conduct confidential meetings and discussions without the risk of distractions or interruptions.
  2. Customization and Branding: Shared office spaces allow businesses to customize their workspace to reflect their brand identity and culture. From branded signage to personalized office layouts, businesses have greater control over the aesthetics and functionality of their workspace.
  3. Control Over Workspace: Shared office spaces provide businesses with greater control over their workspace, allowing them to set their own rules and regulations. This autonomy enables businesses to create a tailored work environment that meets their specific needs and preferences.

What Are the Key Differences Between Coworking Spaces vs Shared Office Spaces? 

coworking vs shared office space
  • Flexibility vs. Privacy
    • Coworking spaces prioritize flexibility, offering open layouts and shared amenities that foster collaboration and networking. 
    • Shared office spaces provide greater privacy and control over the workspace, making them suitable for businesses that require confidentiality and focused work environments.
  • Community vs. Exclusivity
    • Coworking spaces thrive on community and interaction, providing opportunities for professionals to connect, collaborate, and share ideas. 
    • Shared office spaces offer a more exclusive environment, catering to businesses and individuals who prioritize privacy and professionalism.
  • Cost Structure
    • Coworking spaces typically operate on a membership or subscription basis, offering flexible pricing options that cater to different usage levels. 
    • Shared office spaces often require longer-term leases and may involve higher upfront costs, but they offer greater stability and predictability in terms of pricing and availability. Luckily for you, at Bell Works, we know flexibility is important which is why our office collection is easy to lease with long and short-term options to best suit your business needs.
  • Amenities and Services
    • Both coworking spaces and shared office spaces offer amenities such as high-speed internet, meeting rooms, and kitchen facilities. 
    • Coworking spaces may also provide additional perks such as community events, networking opportunities, and wellness programs.
    • Shared office spaces may offer more customizable amenities tailored to the specific needs of the businesses renting the space.

Bell Works Chicagoland is a destination for business and culture unlike any other in the region. By combining world-class workspaces, curated dining options, one-of-a-kind retail experiences and much more, it’s everything a great downtown can offer—all under one roof! Learn more about our Metrohub.

Choosing the Right Chicago Workspace for You

Ultimately, the choice between coworking and shared office space depends on your individual preferences, work style, and business requirements. If you thrive in a collaborative, community-driven environment and value flexibility, a coworking space may be the perfect fit for you. A shared office space may better suit your needs if you prioritize privacy, professionalism, and control over your workspace.

At Bell Works Chicagoland, we offer a range of workspace solutions, including coworking spaces and shared office spaces, to accommodate diverse preferences and requirements. Whether you’re a freelancer, entrepreneur, or established business, we have the perfect workspace to help you thrive and succeed. Contact us today to learn more about our Chicago workspace options and find the perfect fit for your needs.

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