In January of this year, we promoted the 2018 Global Coworking Survey by Deskmag. We highlighted the importance of participating in the survey and why the results mean a great deal to all of us involved in the industry.
Well, turns out, many of you listened to all the outlets encouraging survey responses. With 1,980 participants, this was the largest survey yet, 104 more total submissions than last year.
That, in and of itself, is a testament to the growing world of Coworking. But let’s dive in to some of the really interesting trends we found in the results of the 2018 Global Coworking Survey.
More Spaces / More Members
The most prominent upward trend the survey revealed is in sheer volume of spaces and members. There are projected to be nearly 19,000 Coworking spaces and 1.7 million members in the year 2018. That is, as has become common, a new all-time high.
Based off the question in the survey of ‘what are the biggest trends for 2018’, the most frequently used words in the responses were ‘more’, ‘coworking’, and ‘spaces’. Coincidence? We think not.
But there were also other trends that were spotted among the word frequency data. Niche spaces will become a larger part of the industry. If 2017 was any indication, all-women’s spaces is definitely one of those areas that could further expand in the coming year.
Another popular response to this question involved more big corporations turning to Coworking. As we’ve noted previously, it’s becoming more common for large scale brands like IBM and Facebook to use Coworking spaces. That trend should clearly continue in 2018 and beyond as a smart, cost-effective alternative to traditional office space.
What else did the survey show was on an upward trend? Members per space. For the 5th consecutive year of the survey, the results show that the amount of members per Coworking location has grown again.
The average space now has 159 members! Trimming the highest and lowest 5% off the responses (a statistical method to increase accuracy) leaves the average at a still record 82 members per space. So we can draw two conclusions off this data:
Either the actual size of spaces is increasing steadily (more room for more members), or the amount of space each member has is dwindling steadily (squeezing more members in the same size space). In reality the answer is probably a little bit of both.
An interesting question the survey posed was in reference to what aspects of Coworking will continue to increase in 2018. The most common responses all represented an increase from previous years. Participants expect an increase in overall members, sense of community, income, and events.
Is it the right time to expand? Is the market right for that kind of business path? 45% of operators answered yes, they plan on expanding, either to a larger location or to open another location.
Another 27% stated that they plan to expand within their current space, with more desks for more members. All of these figures remained mostly flat from last year’s survey.
The biggest challenges for operators per the responses, is to attract more members. Although we’ve seen the amount of members continue to grow, there is a great deal more competition now than there was in previous years.
So yes, there is a larger pool of candidates, but those candidates are seeking something that is ideal for them and as an operator, standing out amongst competitors is a challenge.
‘General workload’ and ‘real estate market’ were the second and third most common challenges listed in the responses.
76% of members do not expect to leave their space within the next year or at all. This number remains on par with previous years, which is indicative of how well run Coworking spaces are, and how satisfied members are for the most part.
To download the FULL report of the Coworking Survey results in PDF version, click here. It contains in-depth analysis of all these facts we presented here, and many more!
WUN is proud to be a supporter of the Global Coworking Survey. To find out more about how our brand can help all aspects of operating a Coworking and shared space, please click the link below.