Most Small Businesses Without Office Space Aren’t Looking for Space

More than half of small businesses (59%) currently without office space do not plan to acquire or lease real estate in 2021, saying that the benefits of remote work outweigh the costs of having an office, according to a new report from Clutch, the leading B2B research firm.

“The main benefit of embracing a remote workforce for small teams is that it allows them to punch above their weight,” said Kevin Harrington,  CEO of Joblist, a job searching platform whose workforce has been entirely remote since the company’s founding in 2019.

As of now, one in 10 small businesses have contracts with a coworking space. Researchers at Clutch expect that number to grow. Stewart Dunlop, founder of Airsoft Pal, a website that provides airsoft gun research and ratings, said that coworking spaces are flexible because it is easy to move in and out of a shared space. Dunlop points to the financial savings coworking spaces provide small businesses because the internet and furniture is already supplied.

Coworking does come with drawbacks, particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic. Coworking spaces have had to provide better ventilation, cleanliness, and social distancing since the pandemic began.

In terms of hybrid work, about one-third of businesses who hold a lease for office space (32%) plan to continue their lease with a partially remote workforce in 2021.

“While our team has proven that we’re able to make incredible progress and work effectively from home, I don’t anticipate that we’ll ever see a total disappearance of in-person workplace culture,” said Eric Wu, co-founder and COO of Gainful, a sports nutrition company.

Gainful has invested in air purifiers and created a physical distancing plan so that employees can come to the office some days while working remotely on others.

Clutch surveyed 500 small business owners and managers to learn about their plans for commercial real estate in 2021.

Read the full report here: