Coffee shops full of B.E.A.N.S
(Business Entrepreneurs And New Startups)
- 27 per cent of small business owners cite coffee shops as their favourite remote working location
- 16 per cent of small business owners would work remotely to save on transport and operational costs
London, 04 April 2017: New research1 by Direct Line for Business reveals a new wave of coffee shop capitalists, as over a quarter (27 per cent) of UK small business owners work from coffee shops in favour of their usual office space. The appeal of free Wi-Fi, electricity, warmth and a sociable environment is luring many small business owners to swap their lonely offices and home workspaces for coffee and conversation.
Many entrepreneurs don’t have their own premises so take advantage of space and free connectivity elsewhere. Small business owners and operators also work from the comfort of restaurants (14 per cent) and bars (11 per cent) and fresh air lovers are even working outside in parks (8 per cent).
The research also shows that SME owners and operators have to manage their businesses on the go, with 19 per cent working while waiting for flights at airports and 18 per cent working while on public transport.
According to the research, over a third of small business owners (35 per cent) believe the greatest benefit of remote working is the flexibility of being able to operate from multiple locations, such as working on the way to and from meetings. Other advantages include a better work life balance (32 per cent), greater productivity (17 per cent) and reduced operational and transport costs (16 per cent).
When it came to the barriers of remote working, limited Wi-Fi access came out on top, affecting 35 per cent of small business owners on the move. This was followed by greater distractions (24 per cent), struggling to find a power source (23 per cent) and missing interaction with office colleagues (14 per cent). Interestingly, one in 11 (9 per cent) worry that their colleagues or clients may think less of them if they aren’t office bound.
Jane Guaschi, Business Manager at Direct Line for Business: “Many small business owners aspire to work in creative and engaging work spaces and the wealth of Wi-Fi hot spots now available allows them to turn a high street coffee shop into a mobile business hub.
The research shows there are clear benefits of working remotely, greater flexibility and a better work life balance are some of the advantages of mobile working, which is why more and more small businesses are embracing it to help drive productivity and reduce operational overheads.”
Remote working is most popular amongst businesses with 10 or more employees (74 per cent), compared to micro companies (60 per cent) and sole traders (43 per cent).
Notes to editors
1 Direct Line for Businesses’ research conducted in 29th August – 2nd September 2016 by Opinium Research amongst a sample of 301 UK small business owners.
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