A Rhyl coworking and business hub is encouraging local workers to take advantage of support being offered to ensure flexible working remains affordable as living costs continue to rise.
Costigan’s Coworking on Bodfor Street is highlighting the alternative option of coworking - whereby people from different companies, backgrounds and perspectives work from a shared space - through a number of funding and discount schemes aimed at entrepreneurs starting or growing a business and at existing teams working under a hybrid or remote model.
The call to freelancers, business owners, hybrid and remote workers who regularly use their home as a workspace comes after a survey revealed that 1 in 4 homeworking Brits were already planning on spending less on food to curb astronomical energy price hikes.
In response to the soaring household costs, which have driven 1 in 2 to reconsider whether they can still afford to work from home, the hub is urging budding business owners to apply for the Square One bursary. Applicants could be granted 3 months’ worth of free coworking, one-to-one business support and access to expert-delivered workshops to support the development of their enterprise.
Additional free business support for a group of prospective startup founders is launching in the new year - Startup Club will run on weekday evenings and introduces attendees to the fundamentals of business, getting them ready to leap into entrepreneurship without needing to take the risk of quitting their day job beforehand.
As 75% of surveyed homeworkers said that they felt their employer has a responsibility to provide flexible working options if it becomes too expensive to work from home, Costigan’s is also appealing to employers to take advantage of a membership plan dedicated to helping teams find an alternative to home or office working.
Jemma Crutchlow-Porter is the founder of Your WingWoman, a digital marketing and tech support provider for startups across North Wales, and has been based at the shared workspace Costigan’s Coworking in Rhyl since January.
She initially looked into coworking during her search for an affordable workspace where she could onboard her first member of staff, before realising the benefits of working with others.
However, since joining Jemma has increased the days she works at the hub, citing the rising cost of home energy as a factor. Jemma said: “Personally, my household outgoings have already doubled, and I’m likely to be hit even harder as the prices continue to increase. I’ll definitely be spending more of my days at Costigan’s rather than my home office to offset that as much as possible.
“I first joined Costigan’s as Your WingWoman started to grow and I took on my first member of staff. At the time, I only intended to set myself up at a professional base where we could work together outside of my home. It wasn’t long after becoming a member that I realised coworking is so much more than a desk and affordable office space.
“Without the support and community element that exists, we wouldn’t have received guidance on funding and grants, delivered our first-ever training sessions, or met the clients and partners that we have. We’ve definitely earned more opportunities and won more business through being in the environment, and we’re in a much better position going into an economic downturn than we would have been otherwise.
Costigan’s is operated by coworking and small business experts, Town Square Spaces Ltd (TownSq), on behalf of Denbighshire County Council.
Owain Colwell, Community Manager at Costigan’s, said: “In recent years, there has been huge disruption to the status quo of working routines with remote and hybrid models becoming immensely popular, and 9-5 five-day office weeks falling increasingly out of favour with workers.
“However, with so many people struggling with the costs of working from home, there is cause for concern that the progress already made to transform working lives could be at stake.
“By providing support at Costigan’s, we want to ensure that coworking is an affordable way to retain these freedoms, striking that balance between flexibility and accessibility. It’s also a fantastic network builder - the natural friendships that form between coworkers allow people to share experiences, learn from one another and often develop partnerships and professional collaborations.”
“If anyone is worried about their current situation or wants to find out more about how we could offer a helping hand during this tough time, the best thing to do is to get in touch and find out how we can help!”
To find out more about the support available at Costigan’s, book a tour.
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