There’ s a marked transformation taking place in the look and feel of offices in India. The conventional office had private cabins for CEOs and senior executives. But now a new phenomenon is taking hold: the shared office or a collaborative workspace. You find a place at a large table and it doesn’t really matter who your neighbour is. Not only are offices looking different, there’s a new atmosphere, a new wave of energy that’s palpable. It’s a whole new way of working as can be seen in shared offices in Delhi and other urban centres.
Several factors have led to this shift, the most important being the start-up revolution. India is one of the largest start-up hubs in the world. Small businesses are sprouting up everywhere. India has a large millennial workforce, a huge talent pool. Entrepreneurship is the name of the game. Young people with new ideas and blueprints for innovative products, are taking that leap of faith into the unknown and setting up their own businesses. Yes, they do need a place to work but their needs are different. They don’t want their limited resources to be tied into long-term leases. Instead, they want a less rigid arrangement, with no large deposits to be put down and more flexible working hours. They want a place where they can just put down their laptops and get down to work. Internet connectivity is a must. With that, ideas and imagination are given full flow.
It is evident that shared offices are the next big thing in workspaces. People in the serviced office spaces industry who can read the signs are adapting quickly to the new culture. The design and layout of workspaces are being changed so people can share a workspace as well as ideas. Some offices are creating ‘breakout’ spaces where people can brainstorm for ideas or just take a break.
There are vending machines for tea and coffee. Chatting over a cup of coffee often results in breakthrough ideas and networking leads.
Conference and meeting rooms become important in this work culture, and conference rooms in Delhi are an example. The informal must meet the formal at some time. When an idea needs to be presented to a panel or investors need to be invited to back a concept, a well-furnished and equipped conference room on the spot, is an asset. A professional team taking care of all the details is a great confidence-booster. It also adds to the image and credibility of the young presenter.
Offices that adapt to the changing needs of the times by creating more shared workspaces, some ‘breakout’ areas and impressive conference and meeting rooms, are bound to attract the new flood of start-ups looking for places to work with fewer strings attached. This is a global trend and India is fast catching up.