An Introduction to Virtual Coworking Spaces
What Are Virtual Coworking Spaces?
These are online environments where people work together at the same time. Virtual coworking spaces have evolved to include many features that are associated with the physical counterparts. These platforms can be free or be accessed by paying certain amounts. Due to the pandemic, remote coworking spaces are also pivots of companies that were originally operating physical coworking spaces.
Why Virtual Coworking Spaces?
COVID-19 has most definitely magnified the advantages of these spaces. These benefits include:
- Accessing a community of individuals without risking his or her health. Being a part of a community helps address the issue of loneliness and increases motivation needed to work.
- Engaging with people from diverse geographical locations. This results in different perspectives on many topics, and can enrich work experience.
- Paid virtual coworking spaces are cheaper than traditional office spaces and even physical coworking spaces.
- These types of coworking spaces offer greater flexibility for individuals who travel often. This particular benefit was, of course, more relevant before the pandemic.
Who Should Use Virtual Coworking Spaces?
Yes, a virtual coworking space may seem like a dream come true but if the pandemic comes to an end, we should each seriously consider if it is a more suitable option than traditional coworking spaces or offices. As mentioned earlier, virtual coworking may be a wonderful idea for individuals who are always travelling; in addition, it could be suited for people who wish to work from home even after the pandemic, and entrepreneurs who operate their businesses from home and need a professional address as a business address. However, even people who fit these descriptions may opt for another solution. Right now, virtual coworking spaces are the predominant option on the market; nevertheless, if things go back to normal, one should assess one’s needs and situation to understand if a virtual coworking space is the right fit.
How to Make Virtual Coworking Spaces Effective
When one thinks of virtual working spaces, the first thing that may come to mind are zoom meetings. Yes, zoom meetings can execute this space; however, virtual coworking spaces have gone far beyond that to make the experience of coworking as enjoyable and valuable as possible. Depending on the platform one signs up to, a virtual coworking portal may include individual virtual rooms with different features and conference rooms for teams to discuss and collaborate. Moreover, there could be a receptionist available to assist, as well as exclusive access to online webinars, workshops, and workout sessions to improve the productivity of the members. Not only that, but several community building activities that would be implemented in a physical coworking space still occur, such as guided meditation sessions, lunch and learns, check-in sessions, mastermind sessions, stretch breaks, coffee breaks, book clubs, etc.
It’s been established that a virtual coworking session can be hosted via zoom or google hangouts. Now here are two other online tools for successful remote coworking:
- Remo: This is a virtual coworking space with interactive and customizable rooms. Users are assigned avatars that can move to different rooms, and Remo enables users to interact with one another in real-time, regardless of geographical location. There is also a 2-D map of the rooms available in the space.
- Sococo: Sococo allows users to create a virtual office in which people can join and work in rooms. The office can also be decorated and be integrated with zoom and google meet.
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