The Pandemic Hits the Coworking Space Industry, will the Coworking Space Industry Collapse
Original Article By Mr. Robert Li Ruiwu & Professor Chu Junhong (National University of Singapore Business School 7/20)
Included in topics
#Singapore 921 #shared office 11 #shared office series 7
In order to stop the spread of the new coronavirus epidemic across the island, Singapore has implemented a 56-day virus blocking measure. During this period, the whole city almost fell into a state of suspension. For people who are used to entering and leaving office buildings every day, working at home has become the new normal.
Since June, the blocking measures have been gradually liberalized, but in order to avoid another outbreak of the virus, the Singapore government has still imposed restrictions on gathering activities, and office spaces have also required social distance of more than one meter.
With such advanced technology today, no one would have expected that a virus or an epidemic would have such a profound impact on all aspects of society, economy, and life around the world. Facing the impact and challenges brought by the epidemic, the global shared office industry has also undergone an industry adjustment and reshuffle.
About the Author
National University of Singapore Business School
Chinese EMBA-21 Class
Founder and CEO of O2Work
National University of Singapore Business School
Associate Professor of Marketing
Master of Marketing Analysis and Decision
Course Academic Director
Research fields: Management channels, E-commerce, Network Effects, Retail Competition, etc.
The “coworking space” aura fades and Operators need to rethink and start!
“Sharing”, a vocabulary that once enjoyed media highlights under the pursuit of capital, has become the first value concept to be discarded in this virus-subverted world following the global pandemic. So, how can industries and companies related to “sharing” survive and rejuvenate in the post-epidemic era?
In a recent interview with CNBC, the representative company of the sharing economy, Brian Chesky, the founder of Airbnb, said frankly that since March this year, the tourism industry has stopped and everyone stays at home. “We spent 12 years. The shared accommodation business model that was created was burned in four to six weeks.”
▲Brian Chesky, the founder of Airbnb, mentioned in an interview with the media that the travelling trips people understood in the past is gone, but for the company, this may be a new life brought about by market changes. (Screenshot from CNBC)
However, by observing the changes in the market in the past few months, Brian Chesky also found that although people have a temporary rejection and fear of going out, they still have social needs. Everyone is not really resisting travel, but hopes to restore contact with relatives, friends and society on the premise of ensuring their own safety and health. Therefore, Airbnb is also actively responding to market changes, reducing marketing budgets, layoffs and other measures to control costs, maintain corporate vitality, wait for the epidemic to pass, and start again.
It is not only Airbnb that needs to rethink corporate development strategies and adjust product strategies and services. As a member of the shared industry family, what measures should the shared office industry take to adapt to market changes?
At present, the main demand for shared office space is mainly small and medium-sized enterprises and individual self-employed. Under the impact of the pandemic, the operating income of some small and medium-sized enterprises has fallen steeply or even to zero. Some individual employees are also facing unemployment or income reduction problems, which will inevitably affect their demand for shared office.
As a result, some companies or individuals may prefer to choose to work from home, or reduce the frequency of using shared office space, or become more sensitive to rents, and some may actively seek office downgrades, such as renting an entire room to renting a dedicated workstation, even to renting shared/coworking workstations and so on.
Even if the ability of enterprises or individuals to pay rent is not a problem, for people who are used to working from home, how many people are willing to go to the office every day like before the pandemic? Or are they more willing to seek a more flexible office model-a home + office mixed office model?
PwC surveyed 120 U.S. management and 1,200 office employees between May 29 and June 4. 55% of management will let employees work from home at least one day a week after the pandemic. Previously, it was 39% before the pandemic; 72% of employees wanted to leave the office at least 2 days a week, and 32% wanted to leave the office forever. The primary reason for wanting to go back to the office is to cooperate with team members, and difficulty in working with team members is also the primary reason for the decline in productivity.
The epidemic means that the number, level, structure, and price sensitivity of the market’s demand for coworking office have changed. Operators of shared office need to recognize these changes, actively adjust their strategies, and provide more flexible products and services to meet market needs. The demand for a new mixed office model.
In fact, there is a large potential customer base for shared office, that is, customers who used traditional leased office and serviced office in the past.
For companies, office expenses and employee salaries are the main fixed costs, and reducing office expenses has naturally become an important option to deal with this crisis. The lease period of a traditional office is generally more than two years, and the deposit is generally three months’ rent. If the lease is not expired and you want to back out. Not only will the deposit be confiscated, but the rent for the remaining lease term will also be compulsory.
Relatively speaking, shared office may be more cost-effective from a cost perspective. After the pandemic, some companies may switch to coworking/shared office.
Therefore, for operators of shared office, the pandemic is also a reshuffle process for the coworking office industry, bringing coworking office back to the essence of business and the original intention.
Coworking office should return to its essence and original intention.
The core business of coworking is actually the leasing of office space. Operators often lease a large area of property for more than five years from the owner at a time, design and decorate the property, provide office-related services, increase added value, and lease it to various customers after completion.
Compared with traditional office leasing, shared/coworking office space has the following characteristics and advantages:
- Flexible lease term. It can be rented for a few years, or for a short period of several months to several weeks, or even by the day or by the hour;
- Various leasing methods. You can rent independent offices and meeting rooms of different types, or you can rent a dedicated workstation or coworking workstation;
- It is convenient for tenants to move in with just their personal bags. There is no need to design and decorate by yourself, and there is no need to reinstate after renting out;
- High-quality service facilities. For example, it is equipped with water bar area, public meeting area and public leisure area that many companies can’t match, which is convenient for interaction and communication;
- Unique community culture. Through the rich community activities, tenants can establish a wide social circle for the settled members and external customers, which not only expands the business circle, but also enriches their lives.
It is precisely because of the unique advantages of coworking office space that in the past few years, a large number of venture capital has poured into the industry, setting off a coworking office frenzy. Some operators have also begun to over-expand, and continue to enter some non-core business areas, and even purchase a large amount of real estate, from office space leasing to operation.
Capital is blood, but healthy hematopoietic function is the foundation of enterprise survival. Blindly relying on blood transfusion, or blindly burning money to expand against the basic logic of the enterprise, will make it difficult to deal with risks.
Today, the capital tide has receded and the new COVID19 pandemic has broken out. Two coworking office space operators WE+ and FUNWORK have exploded in the industry, closing a lot of space.
The pandemic should alert the entire industry and return to rational positioning and pricing.
For the industry, coworking office is a new office model that has only emerged in the last ten years, and the market is still in the development period. For example, in Singapore, only 5% of companies use co-working space (including serviced office space and co-working space), and only a small part of them use co-working. This means that co-working operators must not blindly expand.
The shortage of funds and declining demand caused by the pandemic forced operators to return to their core business; the flexibility, convenience, and economy of shared office space were more fully reflected in this pandemic, and they are slowly being understood by more companies And identification. And co-working operators with flexible and distinctive services have the opportunity to remain invincible in industry competition and adjustment.
For example, the coworking office space O2Work established in Singapore, in the process of space design and decoration, in addition to paying attention to office practicality and functional performance, it also uses professional ecological design, plant community establishment, and ecological optimization to make the office space The harmful gases such as formaldehyde and VOC are reduced to a minimum, and the professional features of “green, natural, relaxing and healthy” attract customers to return to the office scene with confidence.
▲O2Work, shared/coworking office space in Singapore, relies on the advantages of healthy and eco-friendly design to attract customers to return to the office scene and respond to the impact of the pandemic. (O2Work Odeon Towers picture)
Studies have shown that if a company’s employees work remotely from home, it may be able to effectively maintain the company’s existing business, but the company’s innovation capabilities may be affected.
The communication and interaction scenarios built by the shared office can not only create an effective internal communication place for the employees of the company but also help the settled companies to communicate and collide ideas, thereby stimulating innovation.
Therefore, co-working operators can also consider detailed scenarios and provide supporting facilities and services such as “innovation space” and “innovation corner” to attract customers.
As the pandemic gradually subsides, the next thing people have to face is the problem of returning to the office. So, in addition to maintaining social distancing, how to get employees back to the office? What kind of office do you return to? It has become a problem that many companies have to consider.
In addition, many companies are also facing the problem of reducing office costs and re-selecting office locations after the pandemic. This is not a new opportunity for the development of coworking space in the post-pandemic era.
Original Text: Mr Robert Li Ruiwu (Founder & CEO of O2Work, Chinese EMBA Class 21, National University of Singapore Business School),Professor Chu Junhong (Associate Professor, Department of Marketing, National University of Singapore Business School)
Editor: Wang Tong
*The views in this article do not represent the institutional views of the National University of Singapore Business School
Ecological Coworking Space Office In the Post Pandemic Era
Original Article By:
Dr Chen Zhong
Chief Scientific Officer
International Institute of Mgrass Ecology
With the effective control of the new COVID19 pandemic and the active cooperation of the people, the current pandemic growth slowed down, community transmission gradually disappeared, unfolding Phase 3 is just around the corner. In the process of social and economic reconstruction and the steady and orderly return of enterprises to work and production, more and more office workers have returned back to the office environment.
Although many employees working from home thought it was quite feasible during the pandemic outbreak. But after a few months of working entirely remotely, the novelty wears off and the lack of social interactions plummets, most people want to go back to the office. And this pandemic outbreak has made more and more people realized health is very important, green ecology office environment has become the first choice in people’s minds.
Picture above shows O2Work front reception area at Income@Raffles Place
Indoor Air Quality
Indoor Air Quality in Office Environment is an Important Determinant of Workplace Health Index.
Because of the tropical humidity and hot climate in Singapore, people rely heavily on air-conditioning system and mechanical ventilation to maintain the comfortable temperature of indoor closed environment. There forth a series of health problems caused by indoor closed environment also follow. When indoor air pollutants continue to accumulate, indoor air quality problems become increasingly severe.
Poor air quality in indoor air-conditioning environment can have a profound impact on the comfortable zone and potential health problems. Some unpleasant symptoms caused by poor air quality include dizziness, nausea, cough, fatigue, headache, nasal irritation and skin irritation etc., which are generally referred to as morbid architecture syndrome. Therefore, maintaining good indoor air quality is crucial to the physical and mental health of indoor employees.
In addition, in crowded indoor office conditions, a variety of respiratory viruses are easy to spread and cause acute respiratory diseases. Most of the pathogens of acute respiratory diseases are transmitted mainly by droplets but some can also be transmitted by contact and close range of transmission of aerosols of different sizes.
The pathogenic viruses that causes acute respiratory diseases include rhinovirus, severe acute respiratory syndrome(SARS) associated coronavirus(such as COVID ) and influenza virus. And the new coronavirus of 2019 is the number one public health threat in the office environment.
This picture is O2Work Hot-desk area.
How to Work More Healthier and More Efficiently in a Post Pandemic Era
As a high-tech research institution specializing in urban ecological issues, Mgrass International Ecological Research Institute has developed a series of intelligent ecological technologies tailored to achieve green office and ecological office through unremitting scientific research and practical exploration, developed by strategic partner O2WORK Practical and feasible ecological butler solutions create an environment-friendly office space for you, highlighting the company’s exclusive green ecological business card.
O2WORK adopts the scientific demonstration of the Mgrass International Ecological Research Institute, adhering to the indoor environment design tenet of “people-oriented, ecology first”, organically place the green spirits of nature in the indoor office space, and rationally exert their inherent ecological functions.
With the establishment of plant communities as the core, it is equipped with a complete ecosystem: plants are producers of natural resources, environmental regulators, pollution filters, and carbon storage. In photosynthesis driven by light energy, plants produce oxygen, remove carbon dioxide, filter harmful virus particles, maintain humidity, and reduce ambient temperature; plants also provide aesthetic posture and microclimate benefits. Utilizing omnipotent tropical green plants, the Mgrass International Ecological Research Institute is developing a series of intelligent ecological screens, which can significantly improve indoor air quality, green working environment, and promote health.
Picture above shows the O2Work Income@Raffles Level 12 leisure area
Picture above shows O2Work Income@Raffles Level 12 event space venue
The foundation of great health is the health of the environment. In the post-pandemic era, invest more in health and choose a greener ecological office space!
Want to know more? Welcome to visit O2WORK’s environmentally friendly co-working spaces at ODEON TOWERS and INCOME@RAFFLES.
Where does the coworking space come from and where does it go?
Original Article: Mr Robert Li Ruiwu, Professor Chu Junhong, National University of Singapore Business School
Before the Industrial Revolution, the first administrative buildings appeared to manage state affairs. Uffizi Gallery, the oldest office in history is nearly 500 years old.
▲The appearance of the Uffizi Art Museum in Italy
Between the Year 1760 to 1840, the first industrial revolution to promote labor from a “small workshop“ to produce a more focused “big factory“ and people began to go out to work.
In the early 19th century, telephones, telegraphs, typewriters, and public electricity were born and innovated, which brought about the first change in the modern office in the United States.
At the beginning of 1940, chemical synthetic materials that are easy to shape, rich in color, and low in price have been increasingly used in interior decoration. VOC and other volatile organic compound pollution have become more and more common, which is more harmful to closed office rooms.
After World War II, a more casual office layout became popular in Europe. People can walk around, chat, and use screens and green plants to separate private spaces. This kind of design called “office landscape“ has become popular.
In 1968, a designer Robert Propst redesign the “ office landscape“ based on the design of a cubicle, which fully demonstrated its position within the company, grade, reflecting the effective management and control of consciousness, which until today is still the mainstream design. Blocks of partitions not only limit the physical and mental freedom of employees but also block communication and collaboration between departments.
In 1973, former NASA engineer Jack Nilles proposed that telecommuting is an innovative way to solve the problems of urban expansion, traffic congestion, and lack of non-renewable resources. At this time, telecommuting refers to working at home, and today’s telecommuting refers to working in spaces outside the office, including residences, coffee shops, and shared office spaces.
With the advent of the digital age and the widespread coverage of networks and communication signals, there are more than 3 billion netizens in the world, and home office work has not taken the world by storm. With the widespread use of WIFI, Starbucks and IWG (formerly REGUS) are expanding rapidly around the world. Why? Because people are social animals, they need to stay with people, even strangers.
In 1987, Howard Schultz bought Starbucks shop, bakery factories, and its branding. He believes the core values of Starbucks which is the “third space“ meaning Starbucks not only provides customers with a place to drink coffee but also gives spiritual enjoyment and satisfaction while making people feel fun in this atmosphere and thus winning the trust of customers.
In 1989, the originator of serviced office operators was born in Belgium – IWG. At present, it has launched shared office brand SPACES. Some serviced office spaces will be closed after the contract expires. Members are invited to settle in the new shared office space.
In 2009, WeWork, the originator of a shared office, was born in New York USA. Its community concept and community activity model was a breakthrough in-office functions.
Today, although Wework is in financial woes, however under Neumann’s crazy promoting of the shared office model, it has become a common practice. Freelancers, innovative entrepreneurs, small and medium enterprises, and multinational companies have all realized and experienced the flexibility, economical, and community value of the shared office.
Choosing a shared office can not only save time, effort, and money in the process of property screening, decoration, and use, but also reduce logistics staff.
At present, the shared office market has entered a bottleneck period, and it is difficult to follow the trend and simple imitation. The cruel survival of the fittest has caused operators to reflect on the nature of the format of the shared office? What kind of office environment do various companies and organizations need?
No matter what kind of setting is an office, its essence is always “the place where people work“.
For a long time, the “person“ here refers to the boss. That is, the location of the office, renovation, functional configuration, etc. are all determined by the boss, and then the boss appoints a trustworthy person to be responsible for the renovation project, and in the end, it is often done by someone not professional. It is hard for people to do something that is difficult to do well and it is difficult to have the opportunity to do it again, one can imagine what the result will be.
It will become a trend to entrust the office site selection, design, decoration, and environmental ecological optimization to professional companies, and enjoy the convenience of just carrying a bag and check in to work in a relaxed, comfortable and healthy environment.
Of course, different cultural backgrounds, different ages, different industries, and occupations have different requirements and preferences for the office environment. The traditional office needs to continuously optimize the indoor environment, but the situation of having an unoptimized air indoor environment will still exist for a long time down the road.
To a coworking space, “person” refers to every professional freelancer and every innovative entrepreneur who chooses their own work stations. The bosses of SME(Small Medium Enterprise) will also undergo the choosing of office spaces and workstations selections with their partners and employees together. For huge multinational companies that choose coworking space as their service providers, they tend to cancel their own private office rooms or workstations. What they just need is the flexibility of using meeting rooms and phone booths.
The “ person “ here refers to almost every member. Not only do they have the right to choose space, but they can also choose which office to sit in, sit out of the office, sit in a shared workstation or leisure area and they can also choose to sit or stand.
What is most important to most people? Of course, it is a person’s health!
A high-end office should be an indoor environment that is beneficial to people’s physical and mental health, not just high-end luxury renovation. The exterior beauty is necessary, but it must be based on the physical and mental health of people.
How can we create an indoor environment that is beneficial to people’s physical and mental health? Some coworking companies have already carried out active explorations.
For example, the air quality in the indoor environment is very important. The dust, microorganisms, oxygen enrichment, and humidity in the air are all related to plants.
Build a suitable plant community indoors, and customize ecological products and ecological equipment to create an ecological optimization system, absorb carbon dioxide, ionizing radiation, absorb dust, microorganisms, degrade organic pollutants, and release negative oxygen known as “air vitamins“ Ions, purifies the air and regulates temperature and humidity.
At the same time, natural light is also essential, not only for plants but also for people. Sunlight not only makes the human body form vitamin D, calcium, etc., but more importantly, it makes people cheerful, avoids depression, reduces the risk of dementia, can also regulate the biological clock, strengthen the immune system, and disinfect.
In order to solve the problem of VOC pollution, all renovations, materials, and furniture must use green label certified products.
The coworking space must be the place for “work“. Although it is necessary to take into consideration of the lifestyle needs of members, to be equipped with coffee machines, tea, fresh juice, and other healthy drinks, nuts and dried fruits, healthy food, table tennis table, table football, and other leisure facilities. However, a co-working space must not be a gym or a casino, or a cafe or bar. Co-working space must not be made unlike of office settings, the practice of grandstanding is difficult to sustain.
At present, various forms of coworking office space are still in rudiments, and operators need to use their respective advantages to continuously optimize and upgrade according to market and customers’ needs.
However, it is always necessary to design, decorate, and configure functions closely around the nature of the “place where people work”. Otherwise, it will be neglecting the fundamentals and concentrate on details causing things to turn out contrary to the way one wishes.
Starbucks is testing the industry of shared office/Coworking space. Are the small giants in the industry afraid?
Original by Li Ruiwu, Chu Junhong, National University of Singapore Business School
More than a month ago, an article titled “Starbucks’ first paid office cafe is here, WeWork is trembling”, this article caught my eye. Is Starbucks also going to enter the shared office industry? I happily read it three times and found out that Starbucks is providing precise services for business customers.
It’s not so much an offensive move but defensive, because the free coffee in Co-working spaces has taken away many of Starbucks customers.
On 23rd March, Starbucks in Japan Tokyo Shinagawa Takanawa subway station launched the ” SMART LOUNGE” concept store, which offers: window for a single person seating area, private balcony, private boxes and Hot desks, this is simply the scene and configuration of the shared office space .
< < Swipe to the left to view the next picture >>
▲ In March 2020 , Starbucks launched the “SMART LOUNGE” concept store in Tokyo, Japan to test the industry of shared office space ( data picture )
It seems that Starbucks has launched a battle to target business people with shared/coworking office space.
What kind of love/hate relationship does Starbucks and shared offices/ coworking spaces have? Let’s start with the evolution of the Internet and the office.
Mr Robert Li Rui Wu
National University of Singapore Business School Institute
Chinese EMBA-21 Class
Founder and CEO of O2Work
Chu Jun Hung
National University of Singapore Business School Institute
Department of Marketing Associate granted
Marketing Analysis and Decision Master Shi
Course Academic Director
Research fields: Management Channels, E-Commerce, Network Effects, Retail Competition, etc.
The commercial application of the Internet began with highly standardized books and audio-visual products, which disrupted the retail industry and gave birth to new business giants such as Alibaba, JD.com, and Amazon. Since then, people have believed that the Internet will be unprofitable and will disrupt all industries, including the office leasing industry.
Is it really going to happen?
2C vs 2B
First of all, the retail industry is a 2C format, and its business path is: consumer goods producers – large wholesalers – small and medium traders – large shopping malls / supermarkets / convenience stores – consumers.
With overcapacity and increased in competition, large wholesalers, small and medium-sized traders, and large supermarkets are afraid to stock up the inventory because afraid that their stocks does not sell and thus making losses ; on the other hand, they are unwilling to prepay for goods from manufacturers and cannot afford the costs. For manufacturers, receivables are losses. At the same time, manufacturers do not dare to hoard raw materials and products, hoping to time production according to orders. The entire supply chain does not function smoothly, and all parties have a hard time.
With the application of the Internet and its technology and the logistics of the last mile industry in the city has been opened up. Many manufacturers can achieve on-demand production, delivering products directly to supermarkets, convenience stores or consumers. E-commerce platforms have subverted and integrated the supply chain of consumer goods, compressed intermediate links, and benefited the interests of producers and consumers.
The Internet has also opened up the entire upstream and downstream of coffee production, circulation and consumption, making Starbucks a platform that provides unique consumer products and lifestyle services. It not only directly connects coffee bean plantations and bean farmers, to roasting and processing plants and food factories, but also establishes a global logistics distribution network and a global member network, and opens directly-operated stores around the world to serve every store and Takeaway customers.
Drinking a cup of coffee and spending some time in a Starbucks coffee shop has become a way of life.
The office leasing industry is a 2B format. Even if a large number of freelancers and individual entrepreneurs emerge (they are actually more like sole proprietorships) , the office is still not an impulsive consumer goods, and the main users of office space are from all walks of life. Industries, enterprises of different sizes and various government and non-governmental organizations.
The business path of office leasing is: property owners – property leasing brokers / real estate agents – shared/coworking office space operators – tenants . The popularization of the Internet and mobile Internet applications has greatly accelerated the transmission and dissemination of property rental and sales information, effectively resolved information asymmetry, and shortened the vacant period of properties.
At the same time, due to the wide application of the Internet in the office, the infrastructure configuration of the office has been changed, and emerging office scenarios such as serviced office and shared office have emerged.
The iterative upgrade of the Internet and the widespread promotion of laptops and smart phones have an impact on the office leasing industry not to eliminate the intermediate links of its industrial chain, but to create new customer needs and extend the business negotiations and other affairs originally carried out in the office. Arriving in hotel rooms and lobbies, airport lounge areas and cabin seats, high-speed rail seats, fast food restaurants, coffee shops, this may be unique to the new era of digital economy.
As the saying goes: I destroyed you, but it has nothing to do with me .
“The Third Space”
Due to the promotion and application of mobile Internet and WIFI , Starbucks has created a ” third space ” , that is, for office workers, it is a third space outside of residences and offices, and for students, it is a third space outside of residences and classrooms. , Is a decent, warm and comfortable place for everyone .
Suddenly at one point of time, there were almost two kinds of customers in Starbucks coffee shops, students with thick textbooks, computers and a large cups of drinks, and business people with computers, mobile phones, thick business card holders and a cup of coffee .
Despite this, Starbucks coffee is still a lifestyle service business. Based on espresso coffee, it has developed a variety of drinks and foods, and it sells fruits, dried fruits, coffee utensils, water bottles and cups, and some Starbucks brand accessories, etc. It is similar to the convenience store in Japan’s fourth consumer era, and has become a small living community of ” leisure, gathering, learning, and meeting “.
“New Scene of Office Space”
Nowadays many shared/coworking space borrowed the idea of Starbucks’s store design. Some coworkings space’s cafes have baristas preparing coffee for their customers/members, while others have launched self-service freshly grounded coffee beans coffee, all provided for free.
The furniture category and layout in the shared office space are exactly the same as those of Starbucks coffee shops, mainly the sofa area, high table area, square or long table area, and deck area. Members especially like the deck area. Business people who used to have business meetings in Starbucks coffee shops have returned to coworking office spaces.
Because the public sharing space area of coworking office space is often larger than that of Starbucks coffee shop, the view outside the window is better, the business atmosphere and office facilities are more professional and complete. Such scenes and functions not only meet office needs to the utmost extent, but are also more attractive to students’ choice of space for self-study and various trainings.
As we are in office service providers form, coworking space office provides members with comprehensive and complete office hardware. At the same time, it also creates an open public area similar to the Starbucks third space. Some coworking space operators even provide free beer and pastries.
▲ The shared office space in Singapore’s central business district can achieve the same office environment as a Starbucks coffee shop (O2Work picture)
Facing with more and more members, not only we provide professional finance, taxation, legal affairs, investment, marketing guidance and services, but we also start to pay attention to the lifestyle needs of members. Youke Workshop, a Chinese co-working brand, is already promoting a corporate welfare program and an e-commerce platform for members.
In fact, this may be an inevitable trend in the development of social and economic life. Urbanization is another feat of mankind following industrialization, but the biggest problem in modern cities is transportation. As the Internet is getting faster and faster, people can no longer bear the wasting time commuting.
Therefore, nowadays is not like the only way to be productive is you has to be in the office, but when we are at different times choose a suitable place nearby to complete different work content. These suitable places not only include various coworking office spaces like WeWork and O2Work, but also various stores like Starbucks Coffee cafes.
The business community value of coworking office space is becoming more and more prominent, and the living community function of Starbucks coffee shop is improving so much more. Each has its own characteristics but learns from each other, interacts and learns and integrates with each other, and jointly meets the work and life needs of urban white-collar workers and perhaps it will be the future trend.
Article By: Mr Robert Li RuiWu (O2Work Founder and CEO, National University of Singapore Chinese Business School EMBA-21 class ) , Chu Jun Hung ( Associate professor of Marketing at the National University of Singapore Business School)
*The views in this article do not represent the institutional views of the National University of Singapore Business School
Singapore O2WORK shared office Space, waiting for you in the thick greenery~
O2WORK takes “Indoor Environment Ecological Majordomo” as its mission, in order to make the indoor environment more ecological and better physical and mental health for people. O2WORK operates an environmentally-friendly co-working space, and provides your office with indoor environment plant community establishment and maintenance services, and indoor environment ecological design & ecological optimization one-stop service.
O2WORK adheres to the concept of “people-oriented, physical and mental health oriented”. While ensuring complete and professional office facilities, O2WORK turns the working environment of employees into an interesting, comfortable and cozy ecological scene. It not only provides creative and trendy coworking space for enthusiastic freelancers and entrepreneurs but also creates a green, natural, relaxing and healthy ecosphere for enterprises of all trades and sizes.
An eco-friendly co-working space, dedicated just for you
No O2WORK LOGO on the entrance, front desk or Pantry.
Plants were designed and placed at the reception desk, and red lily flowers were printed on the water cups
◆ ◆ ◆ ◆Ecological community, rich in oxygen and energy◆◆◆ ◆
Tested by the authorized organization designated by BCA, the VOC value of 15 test points in the ODEON TOWERS space was all lower than 100 PPB. On March 25, 2020, BCA presented the GREEN MARK [GOLDPLUS] to O2WORK’s ODEON TOWERS.
O2WORK will provide each member with unique plant seeds and tissue culture seedlings, wishing these seeds and tissue culture seedlings with strong vitality can be as vigorous and grow together with you and your enterprise!
◆ ◆ ◆ ◆ECOLOGICAL DESIGN CONCEPT◆ ◆ ◆ ◆O2WORKWorking in O2WORKEvery day is an energetic day
To be good for your health, O2WORK strives for excellence in the selection of decoration materials and strives to be green and eco-friendly. For example, the composite wooden board meets E0 standard, certificated eco-friendly products are used for carpet, vinyl floor, carpet glue, wall paints, etc. The chair is selected from STEELCASE, a famous brand which has been adhering to the concept of “health of furniture, environment and people“ for hundreds of years.
In addition, O2WORK is equipped with the RAINBOW, a high-tech vacuum cleaner that can act as an air purifier. It can absorb dust particles below PM0.3 in the air and purify the air concurrently. O2WORK is also equipped with steamers which can release 150 ℃ high-temperature steam, and can kill more than 99% of the carpet mites, virus and bacteria, so to ensure you work in a clean environment healthy.
◆ ◆ ◆ ◆COMMUNITY CONNECTS THE WORLD◆ ◆ ◆ ◆
O2WORK organizes various community activities, such as entrepreneurship sharing, product launch, lectures, health talks, yoga classes, education and training, and TV series filming…
Ecology is decent, health is wealth
We sincerely invite you to visit the space
Enjoy 1-hour usage of the conference room for free for the first experience
+65 69099492；+65 98694753；
331 North Bridge Road, Level 22& 23, Odeon Towers, Singapore 188720
WeWork’s prospectus is like a blockbuster, causing huge waves in the US and global capital markets. In just over a month, WeWork has become a hot topic of global public comments and discussions. Various media have repeatedly reported the news, questioning with doubts and comments, and the “pride of the sky” has become a “street mouse.”
From the evaluation logic of WeWork to the review of Softbank’s investment strategy, from WeWork’s corporate governing structure to whether the directors who represent the interests of investors is responsible, what exactly is the coworking spaces industry? Is it a bubble blown up by a capital predator? Or is it a real estate leasing industry that has been played out? Is it the second landlord of the new era, or is it another unicorn? The astronomical capital injection is not just blood, but also adrenaline.
Softbank CEO Sun Zheng felt that WeWork’s CEO, Neumann was crazy, so he chose to invest in WeWork. However, Sun Zheng warned that Neumann would be even more insane to grow revenue to hundreds of billions of dollars. As a result, WeWork’s format is more and more like Softbank. Thus, it becomes what it is today.
WeWork was born under the background of a weak real estate market. Its original intention was to provide freelancers and start-ups individuals with decent and affordable office space.
With comprehensive market research, Neumann found that freelancers and start-ups lack professional and commercial resources and gradually realized that coworking office space should be a community that can brainstorm and share resources, so WeWork began to organize various Community activities to help members get additional value-added services.
He discovered that office space could serve as an incubation center for science and technology enterprises, and believed that it could share premium income by helping members grow and participate as an investor, which was a fantastic idea.
Perhaps Softbank CEO Sun Zhengyi is optimistic about this because it can scale investment and incubate the “next Alibaba.” However, with the expansion of cross-border and the rapid increase in the number of spaces, Neumann found that there were not as many science and technology Start-ups, and most of the tenants were enterprises from all walks of life, like marketing departments of multinational organizations.
As a result, WeWork made a strategic adjustment and began to customize the office space for more significant numbers of customers. However, when they found out that the property rent was a heavy burden, WeWork started to acquire the properties under their own to create new coworking space centers. From the perspective of the second landlord, such ideas and logic are correct.
Just like a noodle restaurant owner with a unique recipe and entrepreneurial passion, he wants to make one of the world’s largest chain noodle franchise, and also attracts a considerable investment, but his reasons make his career fall short. We can’t ignore the quality of the noodle restaurant because of the boss’s problems, and we can’t refuse to eat noodles.
A coworking space operator is just the second landlord. It is a capital predator who try to exaggerate it a technology star. Hot pot has existed for more than 1,700 years. HAIDILAO made a smart restaurant in Beijing last year, implementing technology and smart tablets. Does it mean it isn’t hot pot? The speed of China’s high-speed rail has reached the speed of the plane’s take-off. Does it mean its not a train but an airplane?
The second landlord concept has been around for more than 100 years. However, just as all the traditional office operators are continually upgrading and changing to keep up with the times and technology, the second landlord is also improving towards The internet era… Different from the traditional landlord, the coworking space industry has unique market value and social value.
Is there a future for Coworking space?
Coworking space operators have created and boost value for commercial property owners. Since 2010, the growth period of the coworking space business is just a period of weakness in commercial real estate. Coworking office space not only fills up the vacant area of a large number of commercial real estate but also increase the rentals price of these.
The area of all coworking space in Singapore has increased from 1.2 million square feet in 2015 to 3.7 million square feet. Since the beginning of the fourth quarter of 2017, property rents in the CBD area have increased by more than 20%.
Since the number of office members of a coworking space is generally higher than that of traditional offices, coworking spaces properties often provide services such as shopping, catering, entertainment, etc. Coworking spaces also bring a large number of daily consumer traffic to the property itself. As a lease period for a coworking space is generally more than five years, which plays a crucial role in stabilizing property rent.
At the same time, to further expand and increase functionality, some operators are gradually placing coworking space offices with retail malls or hotels. Some owners are also planning to take advantage of existing real estate resources and create their coworking spaces brands. It could be said that the emergence of coworking spaces not only stabilizes the rental market but also provides owners with more choices of property use.
Coworking space solves the efforts and hassles of selecting a location, designing, decorating, screening of renovation materials, furniture procurement and maintenance, water and electricity set up any utility payments as it enables tenants to be able to avoid the cumbersome and time-consuming matters but achieves the convenience of ready move in, flexible lease period and significantly helps to reduce the costs associated with office set up.
Public areas such as business community lounges, pantry areas, phone booths, and meetings rooms spaces cover more than 50% of the total office space, which is an unattainable enjoyment of traditional offices, which is loved by young people who grew up in the Internet age. Because of this, Google, Facebook, Microsoft, and other Internet giants offices are all design like a Coworking space.
Nowadays, coworking space operators have converted public access spaces into commercial communities giving members/tenants extensive access to information, interaction, resource, and different channels of business opportunities.
Coworking space indeed brings excellent social value as you can see for this instance, the lease term of a coworking space operator is generally more than five years while a traditional office space lease term is typically 12-24 months. Therefore in this aspect, the amount of waste from a renovation in a coworking space is reduced by at least two times compared with a traditional office, and the labor work required would also decrease accordingly. In this way, it not only saves resources, reduces environmental waste, but also helps those countries which generally rely on foreign workers such as Singapore to bring down the need for hiring foreign labor.
On the other hand, a city’s real estate prices and property rents are too high to curb economic activity, and coworking space operators rent properties in large-area, long-term leases, enabling freelancers, science and technology companies, SMEs and Branches of large enterprise groups are able to stay in a pleasant environment and fully furnished office space at a low cost.
In the early days, second-hand landlords rented out property without even dividing into a simple division to obtain the wholesale and retail balance in prices. After decades of improvements, the second-hand landlord has made progress in integrating the property, designs, and decorations and includes other productive and meaning resources to meet the needs customers. In this way, the introduction of the concepts of coworking space has opened up to broader and further developments in this industry.
Today’s coworking space operators, such as WeWork and Regus, have not only professional designers, engineers, but also professional space optimization technicians, artists, and scientists working together to create a more efficient atmosphere and functionality for customers and Inspiring workspace.
But this only opens a window for the advancement of office space. An excellent office space design is an organic integration of aesthetic design, functional design, and ecological design, all of which are indispensable. The aesthetic design focuses on the beauty of color, the technical design focuses on office space and function optimization, and ecological design focuses on the optimization of indoor light, air, sound, and other elements, and builds indoor plant ecology to create a relaxed and healthy working environment.
The current concepts or designs of aesthetic office space have shortcomings in the above three aspects, especially the ecological design, which has been seriously neglected for a long time. The number of people working in coworking spaces offices is often twice as large as traditional office space, and even higher, and the requirements for the ecological design of the office environment are also higher.
The indoor working space is the indoor environment where the intensive office people stay in for a long time. The essence of office space is the place where people work. It is people-oriented, and people’s physical and mental health is the foundation! If you only pay attention to the luxurious materials, furniture, and equipment, and ignore the impact of the space on people’s physical and mental health, what will happen to the tenant´s health?
Today, 5G has emerged. The Internet has become the basic configuration of office space like water and electricity. However, whether the indoor environment of this conducive to the physical and mental health of the dense population living in it has not been concerned, therefore, ecological design and optimization for the indoor environment of office space will be the focus of highlighting the connotation of science and technology.
After all, shared office space is an indoor environment in which people work for a long time. Whether the environment is beneficial to the physical and mental health of the people directly affects the work efficiency and performance of the workers. Many companies give employees free coffee, tea, fruits, cakes or snacks, as well as adequate medical insurance, but do they pay enough attention to the office environment that affects their physical and mental health?
From the perspective of this industry, the operating mode of coworking space is the second landlord, that is, renting in and renting out. Therefore, the rental income must be the primary business income. However, it is necessary to give full play to the value-added benefits of public space resources, facilities, equipment, and provide value-added services to tenants and members through community activities.
In the United States, some bars, restaurants, and hotels rent unused space and facilities for certain times of the day as shared office space, which can maximize the utility of various real estate resources and gradually change the real estate industry to its benefit.
As coworking space becomes a new trend in the property business, each operator is improving and innovating in different levels and angles. Although a coworking space operator is at most a corporate tenant, an enterprise is made up of different people, and different people will have a diverse variety of needs and requirements; thus, a coworking space should naturally be also equipped in a diverse variety of ways.
Nowadays, coworking spaces are not only loved by freelancers and small and medium-sized enterprises but since 2018, many large Multinationals have realized the value of coworking space. Currently, the coworking space industry is still a booming industry, and the operators’ concepts and models should be diversified to meet the needs of different customers.
With the growth of a new generation of entrepreneurs who are free-minded and open, the coworking space industry is bound to keep up the pace with the times and continue to grow.
O2Work: Robert LI
NUS Business School Professor: Junhong CHU