In 2020 alone, it isn’t hard to imagine how much higher - and more stressful - the stakes are for working parents with a pandemic and remote-working added to the daily grind.
The TUC Union's September poll found that 41% of working mums with children under 10 can't get or don't know if they'll be able to find childcare they need at present. 2021 has arrived and the challenges wreaked over the last year have left many remote workers up nightmare creek without a paddle. Particularly those with parenting/caring responsibilities on top of their day jobs. Below we highlight a few co-working spaces for rent that are offering a long-sought-after solution: combining childcare and office space.
Why are childcare and co-working mixing?
The flexible office space industry is beginning to offer this solution for two simple and very good reasons:
Co-working that offers childcare can work out cheaper than nursery/child day-care.
Whilst still seen as a modern phenomenon, co-working has long been understood as a cost-saving no-brainer compared to its conventional lease alternative. Co-working spaces for rent can be even more financially viable when it comes to considering the additional costs of childcare. According to the volunteer Union organisation TUC, childcare costs in the UK have risen four times faster than wages in the last 12 years. Sending a child under 2 to a part-time nursery has risen in cost to £6,800 a year on average, compared to the average cost of £6,600 in 2019, according to daynurseries.co.uk. While full-time nurseries average at a little over £13,100 a year.
Having childcare and the office under one roof means you can tesselate working and parenting with greater ease.
One anonymous freelance working parent commented:
“Regular nurseries mean I end up paying for childcare when I don't necessarily need it or that I can't get childcare when I do need it. The flexibility is amazing.”
If you’re a working parent, here’s a couple of co-working spaces that might be able to help you:
1. Second Home
Where? London Fields, Hackney.
Opening hours: 8am-6pm, 51 weeks per year.
Our favourite feature: The rooftop play area.
Second Home’s London Fields is a family-friendly co-working hub where members have priority access to the onsite nursery ran by the N Family Club. The nursery features a rooftop nautical playground and water feature.
The N Family Club draw on a range of educational practices and philosophies providing an ideal environment for kids to learn, play and explore, while parents can work, innovate and thrive. Outside of Nursery hours, the spaces turn into community Family Clubs offering a range of family events. Access to the events, trips, snacks, and even nappies are all included in the fees.
2. Third Door
Opening hours: 7.30am-6.30pm
Our favourite feature: Flexible nursery packages available.
Shazia Mustafa explained Third Door’s mission to Forbes back in 2018:
“Our mission with Third Door is to enable as many people as possible to have a successful career and a happy family life. More recently we have seen an explosion in coworking spaces, whilst the nursery industry has pretty much stayed the same with little innovation. By combining the two and offering the flexibility, we have created a service that is needed by the growing freelance and self-employed parent community as well as more parents wanting to work flexibly and remotely around their families.”
Third Door was revolutionary in its housing childcare and co-working under one roof when it started out and has set a high bar for providers offering childcare solutions ever since. The flexible nursery package is a great touch: from as little as two hours a day to a full day, you can book the nursery up to 48 hours in advance. You also don’t have to commit to set nursery days but rather you are allocated hours which you are welcome to use on the days that suit you.
3. Cuckooz Nest
Opening hours: Monday - Friday 8am-6pm.
Our favourite feature: Stay in the loop with your little one’s adventures all day via the app.
Cuckooz Nest provides a range of membership options including a fixed traditional nursery membership (which can be paused), a flexi membership for those who don’t follow the 9-5 and workspace that can be used independently from the nursery. On top of all this, Cuckooz Nest allow their members’ the privilege of visiting the nursery at all hours of the day. You can visit your kids to breastfeed, check in or just have a quick cuddle.
4. Bloomsbury Beginnings
Where? Kings Cross.
Our favourite feature: Sustainable meets the practical.
With a specific focus on education to promote sustainable start-ups and entrepreneurs with working parents at its core, Bloomsbury Beginnings CIC offers anything from taster sessions to full and part-time courses for those looking to expand their business and scale their value propositions. There’s a coworking cafe and creche so you and your children can get inspired simultaneously.
5. Huckletree West
Where? White City.
Opening hours: 9am-1.30pm or 1.30pm-6pm.
Our favourite feature: All of the extras.
Huckletree West leaves little to be desired for its ‘parentrepeneurs.’ The Power Parents membership includes half-day childcare with changing facilities, soft play, plenty of toys and a mesmerising workspace for the adults. Huckletree pride themselves on promoting wellness and community in their centres, evident in their regular educational and accelerator events.
It’s a welcome beginning of something we anticipate to have a long and bright future ….
The above co-working centres are a very welcome and encouraging start. No doubt with the way we work is changing so rapidly in the new normal, we will only see childcare and co-working spaces to rent growing and evolving as time goes on.
If any of these spaces appeal to you and you’d like to learn more, Flexioffices can use our 20+ years of expertise and reach out to these providers, do the legwork and get you the perfect working-parenting set up that works for you. Get in touch.