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June 7, 2019

Tips for software developers: where freelancers work?

Agata Piekut by Agata

Interview with Bartosz Chmiel – Brand & Marketing Manager, HubHub

A lot of people chooses to become a software developer to work as a freelancer. However, first-timers often have a problem: where should they work to maximize their productivity while not compromising on their freedom.

Let’s start with the freelancers – who are they and how many of them work in Poland?
Freelancing business is booming. Today, there are over 57 million independent contractors in the USA alone. At the same time, number of freelancers in Poland is estimated for 120,000 individuals. According to the latest reports, during upcoming three years this number will double itself. Currently, the biggest groups of freelancers are programmers, journalists and graphic designers.

How do they work?
One of the most positive aspects of freelancing is its flexibility – you can work wherever you want, in your own style and your own time. As a freelancer or bootstrapping entrepreneur, there are three popular options — home, cafes, or coworking spaces. Choosing a workplace is a very personal decision. Which option is best for you? Considering the following advantages and disadvantages of each workplace will help you make the right decision.

Is work from home still a thing to consider?
The biggest advantage of working from home is simple – it’s the cheapest option. After that comes the freedom. How many times did you think about working in your pajamas, or sweat suit? Working from home gives you the most flexibility. Many home office workers enjoy the ability to work in complete silence or use their favorite artificial noise to stimulate their creativity.
Obviously, there is also the other side of the coin. You can be distracted by many different factors – laundry, your partner, game console and the list goes on and on. That’s why it can be difficult to mentally switch off at the end of the day, still staying at the same place as during the whole day.
If you want to avoid the risk of no work/life separation, you can choose other options: café or coworking space. Entering a new environment to work can help prime you and your brain to hustle and be creative too.

Why cafes can be a better solution than our own, cosy flat?
In most cases cafes provide the basics: a place to sit, power, and internet. And of course, delicious coffee, that we all love and need. Freelancers can simply pull out their laptops and start working. But is there anything that can help you grow and get more knowledge? In cafe you’re surrounded by many people…but in the most cases these people can’t help you or your business to grow. Let’s go back to the costs. I assume that you do not want to be the person who sits at a coffee shop for 3 hours with a small cup of coffee. For the amount of money you will spend for 4-5 cups, you can be a member at a coworking space and enjoy the coffee, sometimes even prepared by on-site barista.

So, tell us more about the coworking centres – how they are different than cafes?
Coworking spaces are superior to cafes in many ways. They have faster wifi and more comfortable chairs/desks – it’s very important for the freelance programmers to have enough space to fit external screens. If you are freelancer aka One-man Army, you can use one of two options: hot desk available on a first-come first-serve basis, or dedicated desk that will used only by you.

What’s the cost?
Coworking memberships are more expensive than working at home or a coffee shop. In our case, Flexi Desk membership costs 450 PLN/month, but I have to admit, that a large portion of the value of membership comes from the other people in the community.

How would you describe HubHub community?
Our members work for the very differentiated companies. You’ll find here consultants, programmers, marketers and even lawyers. But our community doesn’t end with members on-site. We organize exciting social events and thematic workshops for non-members – thanks to this you can meet even more people that you think and fully benefit from you new connections.
It’s unsurprising that people come to coworking spaces specifically for the people, that they can meet there. Focusing on your work is a lot easier when you’re surrounded by other ambitious people building up their businesses alongside you. The connections made at a coworking space could be a lot meaningful than the ones you make at a coffee shop.

Ok, so how can somebody decide which option would be the best one?
If you are l undecided what’s the best workspace option, the easiest way is to test them all. But while it’s easy to check work from home and cafes, it’s bit more expensive in case of the coworking spaces. Don’t worry, we thought about it. We have 10 One Day passes for the Geek Girls Carrots community. How to get one of them? Write us a message at warsaw@hubhub.com with preferred date of the test day and choose which HubHub location you want to visit: HubHub Postępu 14 or HubHub Nowogrodzka Square – that’s it!

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