At the end of the year, we made you aware of the interest of coworking for employees... a new way of organisation that contributes to the transformation of work and the well-being of employees. With a vision that we at neo-nomade have of a "win-win" solution for both the company and the employees, since a happy and committed employee is also more efficient! Employers are not mistaken: in Deskmag's latest International Coworking Survey 2017, 26% of coworking users state that the rental of their space is paid for by their employer. A quarter of the users would therefore be employees?
Now that management, and Human Resources in particular, have recognised the value of this approach, there are still operational questions about the deployment and organisation to be imagined for setting up coworking for employees. On the strength of our experience with large (or smaller) companies, such as Generali or at Crédit Agricole, we give you here 10 tips to follow to initiate change through work mobility!
Anticipate future uses
The first essential step in such a project is to define the scope of the project well in advance in order to provide answers in line with future needs and uses. Through concrete questions such as the frequency of use, the type of space desired, the modes of use (by the hour, by the day...), the essential services etc. you will carry out an initial diagnosis with your employees.
We have thus developed a methodology that defines 5 typical cowoking user profiles : hyper-nomadic, social, adventurous, homebody and coordinator. After a survey of future coworkers, we obtain trends that inform us about projected needs and uses. Another advantage of this approach: by putting employees in the loop at a very early stage, you involve and motivate them for the project.
Choose your spaces
From the very community coworking in the city centre to the telecentre in the countryside, there are a variety of "third places", and there are even more and more of them in France. You will therefore have to be careful to select the ones you offer to your employees. The most common criteria are the type of space and its atmosphere (rather an innovative ecosystem with startups or rather a space where one can work in peace and quiet), the geographical location to be closer to where employees live or travel, and the budget, of course. The price can vary in Ile-de-France from 15 to 45 Euros per day, from 10 to 35 Euros on average in the Region.
Here again, giving users a voice will be an indispensable source of information. Why not start with a test phase in which you leave a wide field of spaces, and then analyse your employees' feedback? Remember, apart from the legal aspects, they are the ones who are right!
Make your budget
At this stage, you have the elements to build your budget envelope. Several parameters are to be taken into account:
- Adoption rate: this will vary depending on the populations you are targeting. For sedentary teleworkers, for example, a maximum of 10 to 15% of teleworkers choose coworking (compared to home). No doubt this percentage will increase as the number of spaces increases and as employees become more aware of the phenomenon. For nomadic populations, higher adoption rates can be observed (40 to 50%), but with very variable use and depending on specific needs. Here again, a test phase will enable us to verify the actual adoption rates through usage.
- Average price of spaces - three criteria will be taken into account: geographical location, type of space (more or less high-end) and associated services (meeting rooms, parking, secure storage, etc.). From there, and according to the volumes of consumption you have defined, you will be able to plan an annual budget which will be readjusted after an experimental phase.
- Implementation and support costs: whether this project is managed internally or by a service provider, you will need to take the time to organise and support these new practices. Unlike booking costs, these are non-recurring costs, which will only occur at the beginning of the project.
Then, it is necessary to favour a global vision of the budget to build a "Business Case" including the costs: implementation and support, costs of reserving spaces over time but also the returns on investment that can be made thanks to the project. This "ROI" must be both financial (space saved, for example, when moving or increasing the density of space at the head office, concomitant with the switch to coworking) and extra-financial (employee commitment, savings in travel time, employee well-being, openness and innovation, HR attractiveness, productivity, etc.). These indicators must be measured during the test or ramp-up phases of employee use of these new spaces.
Prepare the legal aspect
The law stipulates that an employee working in coworking is considered to be working under normal conditions if the space is provided by the company. In order to be as close as possible to the legal constraints, particular attention will therefore also be paid to the choice of spaces so that they meet the expectations of the labour code.
Still on the legal level, it will be necessary to ensure that the Staff Representative Bodies are involved throughout the process of defining the project. This will enable the project to be built together in good understanding, while reassuring them about the fears that teleworking may raise (distance from headquarters, right to disconnection, etc.) despite the fact that it is favoured by employees.
Don't neglect safety constraints
Security constraints are of several orders: concerning the physical integrity of persons and material security, it will be necessary to be vigilant on these points when selecting spaces. Whatever happens, the coworking areas, which are also subject to these constraints, comply with current directives.
Third-party work then raises issues of data security and confidentiality. In the first case, the systematic use of a VPN meets these constraints. As for confidentiality, employees can be trained and made aware of the use of confidential spaces, the prohibition of printing, etc. It is in particular on this point that we will have to be vigilant during the launch and support phase. Involving your security department is also possible, in order to validate these aspects. Generally speaking, coworking spaces are part of a more general movement to free up work outside the company (nomadism, teleworking, etc.) to which the HR, IT, Security and other departments must adapt.
What about insurance?
Employees working in coworking are covered firstly by their own civil liability and secondly by the company's insurance for any damage for which they are responsible. As for the spaces, they too have insurance to cover any incidents that may occur.
Therefore, all you have to do is check with your insurance company and those of the spaces that they are up to date. Some intermediary services, as we do on Neo-nomade, also allow you to take an additional insurance linked to these new uses.
Accompany the change
These uses of alternative workspaces are new, and are part of a profound evolution of work in the digital age. It is therefore necessary to provide employees with the right support, and to assess the need for support at an early stage. If your employees are already knowledgeable, autonomous nomads, used to working in flexible and diversified environments, these new practices will undoubtedly be easy to implement.
If your employees are accustomed to more traditional and sedentary work environments, less accustomed to collaborative tools, a coaching and experimentation process is strongly recommended.
This is all the more essential if these new uses are part of a wider transformation project (moving, setting up teleworking, reorganising internal spaces and moving to flex-office...). Experimentation and support will enable the system to be validated step by step and adjusted as and when necessary, by learning with the main parties involved: your employees. They are at the heart of the system.
Be inspired by companies that have passed the milestone
When tackling such engaging topics as transforming work through mobility, it can be useful to refer to good practices already implemented by other companies. Here are a few of them, for which we have been working in recent years and months and which are now measuring the positive effects of such a system:
- EDF signed a teleworking agreement in October 2016. enabling its employees to work from home and in third locations, for its CSP (Shared Services Centre) branch
- GENERALI has also set up an innovative flexible work policy including an experimentation of "flex-office", teleworking at home and in third places. This is deployed both in the provinces (for its sales staff) and in Ile-de-France, for its teleworkers.
- CREDIT AGRICOLE, via its subsidiary SILCA, has set up an innovative system of access to about twenty spaces in the Paris region as part of a recent move to its Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines campus.
Coworking... for the intern?
By reinventing spaces and ways of working, coworking venues have much to teach businesses about how to meet the human needs of work in the digital age. Some companies are therefore working on "internal coworking" or "corpoworking" projects. Whether it is to create real internal spaces for exchange and collaboration, or to organise nomadism within the company in under-used and redeveloped spaces, coworking in the broadest sense has many years ahead of it... Inside or outside the company!
To go further
To explore these aspects and learn more about the various feedback, do not hesitate to contact us, we will answer all your questions!Contact us for more information