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Looking for a space to work?

There are better options than your spare room and Starbucks, as Tom Broadbent discovers

Published on October 12th 2009.

Looking for a space to work?

Anyone who has worked from home will know that it's not always as attractive as it sounds. The novelty of wearing your pyjamas until mid-morning quickly wears off, and you find yourself longing for human contact, or even just to leave the house.

“We can offer something as simple as a single desk in the city centre that you can use for a couple of mornings a week for a few months which can easily be extended if and when your business takes off”

If your business isn't making tons of money yet, you probably haven't considered your own office space. The perception is that you would have to sign up for a year-long lease and could end up paying for a room that you only use for a fraction of the week. But in reality, there are different ways of working that are cheap, flexible, and don't demand a long-term commitment.

Regus is a multinational company best known for housing big businesses with hundreds of employees. But it is increasingly helping freelancers and start-up businesses with much smaller requirements. Andy Birks, National Sales Director explains: “We can offer something as simple as a single desk in the city centre that you can use for a couple of mornings a week for a month – which can easily be extended if and when your business takes off. Whatever you need, whether it's for one person, four people, or a hundred people, we'll be able to accommodate it.”

With more people being made redundant and setting up on their own, Regus is seeing an increase in demand from one to four person businesses. A popular option is its Campus Desk – which is simply a desk which you have exclusive use of, and which you can access 24-7. It costs from just £149 a month.

They can fix you up with administration, IT and communication services as well if you wish, such as a telephone answering service or a business address for your mail. Their ethos is that they'll listen to what you want, then sort you out with an office solution which is tailored to your needs.

Regus has seven sites in Manchester: Cheadle, Didsbury, Exchange Quay, Spinningfields, Manchester Business Park (at the airport), Peter House, and King Street (which is ideal for those looking for an address that will impress clients).

Their office at the elegant Peter House in St Peter's Square is a popular choice, with the central location being an obvious draw. It's also the hub for the Institute of Directors in the North of England, making it great for networking. Says Birks: “The Institute of Directors use the business lounge, which Regus customers use for socialising and meetings. It means you can bump into influential people from companies who may be looking for services like yours.”

Another key Regus location is their office at Manchester Business Park, next to Manchester Airport. It's easily accessible by train, car and plane, and again, there are opportunities for networking thanks to the shared business lounge. Like Regus' other sites, an office space here gives your business a professionalism and credibility that a home-based enterprise lacks.

Regus has centres nationwide and you can use their facilities when you're visiting other cities. “If you're in London, you can nip into one of our offices for a few hours,” explains Birks. “It's a lot easier than trying to find a quiet place in a coffee shop or a library.”

If you're interested in what Regus can offer you, give them a call. They'll arrange for you to meet a sales manager who'll chat to you about your needs. The team at Regus pride themselves on being flexible – they won't try to sell you a pre-set package that doesn't suit you, and their prices are affordable even for fledgling businesses. The days of sitting in Starbucks with your laptop squashed against someone else's mocha could soon be over.

Contact Regus in Manchester on 0161 602 3220 or visit www.regusmanchester.co.uk

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