WeWork squeezes people into its offices

Jamie McKane

MyBroadband Journalist
Staff member
Super Moderator
Mar 2, 2016
WeWork squeezes people into its offices

Here’s a superlative that didn’t get much attention in WeWork’s 220-page prospectus for its planned initial public offering: it jams more people into its spaces than just about any other commercial landlord.

In London, WeWork provides about half of the 8-to-10 square meters per person recommended by the British Council for Offices industry association.



Honorary Master
Jul 11, 2005
People doesn't get jam in, they choose to rent the space.


Executive Member
Jan 2, 2013
We work office users aren’t from a single company, which means that the hours worked have a much larger spread. Some people will get in a 4am and leave at 11am. Others will arrive a 8pm and leave at 4am. The distribution will obviously be highest in the standard times, but not as much as a single company’s office when normalized by head count.

Many We workers see clients regularly, and aren’t in the office. Many workers have their own businesses and work in the office only when it suites them, or if they need some specific facilities (eg, meeting room).

The open desk tables at WeWork are also a lot more effective than the same in big corporate offices. When people don’t work together and don’t sit next to each other for months and years, there is less chance of them being as disruptive to one another. This allows more people in tighter spaces.

Tl;dr just looking at headcount per square meter is insufficient to make a judgement on relative overcrowding.