Could the mobile office be the future for freelancers?

Workplace and wellbeing

4 May 2016

The much-discussed 'mobile office' is being touted as the way forward for freelance professionals: but does hot-desking in a shared office space really make more sense than working from home or renting permanent business premises?

Here, we take a brief look at some of the benefits of the mobile office.

Cost savings

Offices traditionally provide two things: a space for employees to work together, and a home for tech hardware and software. Increasingly, shared or co-working offices and SaaS (Software as a Service) like Adobe’s Creative Cloud deliver both of these business essentials, but on a more flexible basis – allowing small, nimble businesses to drastically cut overheads.

Networking opportunities

The founders of rapidly expanding co-working office provider WeWork told Business Insider UK that they offer more than a work space – they provide a ‘physical social network’. Through extras like socials, community officers and collaborative kitchens, office providers like WeWork encourage co-operation between businesses, which means added value for freelance consultants – and a more stimulating environment than the study at home.


Cloud services enable colleagues and clients to communicate anywhere, any time. In particular, VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) technology frees your business number from the ‘office phone’ – and independent services like Google Hangouts are becoming faster and more stable solutions for conference calls and remote meetings.

Meanwhile, flexible office spaces offer freelancers and micro-SMEs the chance to rent a meeting room or desk space when needed, rather than paying for fixed costs.


A study by Deloitte and THNK found that 85% of successful start-ups adopted an easily scalable business model. While traditional office spaces often lock tenants into lengthy contracts, shared spaces usually require shorter commitments, making it easier to scale up or down to meet client demands.


Mobile office solutions aren’t just flexible, they’re stable too. Patrick Lincoln, Managing Director of business communications specialists Solution IP, told tech industry mag PCR: “In the event of a disaster, office-based workers are more likely to suffer than mobile counterparts, especially if the mobile workforce is making use of a hosted phone system, which facilitates the continuation of day-to-day activities, no matter what.”

Of course, not every business will feel comfortable upping sticks to a co-working space and shifting all operations into the cloud – particularly as around 50% of professionals still have concerns about the risks of data loss and intellectual property theft associated with cloud computing.

So with advantages to be gained in cutting overheads and boosting networking opportunities, could a move to mobile could be worth considering for freelance consultants?