Smart Worker

I recently read an article about a man who was working from Indy Hall in Philadelphia for a company in Vancouver. Teleworking is not new these days and even working for a company located elsewhere on the globe isn’t that earth shattering with the technology for communicating 24/7. What was brilliant about this man’s story was that he had figured out how to get his corporation to pay the $275/month membership fee for him to work their full time. It’s a win-win for the corporation and the employee. Let’s do the math:

A corporation typically pays for about

  • 200 sq. ft. for each employee – cubicle + hallway + breakroom + cafeteria + restroom + dead space like lobbies.
  • $4.00/sq. ft (minimum/month) – Rent + taxes + utilities
  • 200 sq. ft. * $4.00 = $800/month per employee
  • $800/month per employee – $275/cost of employee working in coworking space = $525/month savings

Now a company that employs 1000 people, if they had just half of the space in corporate office and let their workforce telecommute 50% of the time they would save $262,500/month ($525 * 500 employees) and $3,150,000/year. $3 million per year is not small potatoes and a great way to cut back.

The employee also saves money on gas But more importantly this employee benefits in intangibles such as lack of commute stress, living where his spouse needs to for her career, the community created in a coworking environment, and as a result is happier and more productive for his company. We would all benefit from more people using coworking spaces (checkout a list of my favorites). Of course, as the owner of Cubes&Crayons that’s my favorite for coworkers with and without kids.  I love it when everyone wins!



  1. Posted September 13, 2008 at 10:56 pm | Permalink

    Whatever business is paying $4/mo/sq.ft. is either high-end retail, which wouldn’t employ teleworkers, or else is likely going to go out of business quite quickly!

    In downtown San Jose, CA, my company paid $1.55/sq.ft./month full service (included janitorial, electricity, water, and parking.) This was in a quite nice office space. That price also included tenant improvements such as our own carpet and paint.

    This is in the middle of Silicon Valley, where houses routinely cost $800K+, and median household income is $75,000/yr.


  2. felcityatcubes
    Posted September 14, 2008 at 3:51 pm | Permalink

    Some companies pay more or less depending on their size, length of lease and obviously on their location. In parts of Menlo Park/Palo Alto, also in Silicon Valley, the cost can be much higher. Plus there is internet, etc. costs that go along with it.

    Regardless the point is that when you can get a company to pay for your coworking space then you have done smart negotiating. Even if we take your $1.55/sq. ft. * 200 sq.ft. = $310/month which does not include internet, phone, video conferencing, furnishings, etc. the company in the example still would save money. Just another way to look at it.

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