UMA by Technopolis offers dynamic and flexible coworking space, small private offices and conference rooms with all the modern technology needed in today’s changing work culture. UMA Esplanadi is located in the very center of Helsinki. One of its many satisfied clients is Jarkko Toikkanen of MatchOffice. He has only praise for the facilities.
MatchOffice is an international growth company in the commercial property lease market. It operates the MatchOffice.fi portal, a central information repository of office, commercial and production facilities, as well as meeting and coworking spaces. MatchOffice has had a membership for UMA Esplanadi for just over a year and Toikkanen has been using the facilities for a little over four months. He has only praise for the facilities.
MatchOffice taps into the growing popularity of coworking spaces such as UMA Esplanadi. The number of people working from home, freelancers and small entrepreneurs is growing as our ways of work change and coworking spaces are in ever greater demand.
UMA Espanadi offers everything modern workers need: internet connections, desks, chairs, and conference rooms, all in a stylish décor in an excellent location. Most people prefer to work outside of the home to meet others, socialize and network to enhance their professional knowledge and profiles. UMA Esplanadi offers all this and Toikkanen is a testament to the need for such services.
For Toikkanen one of the many benefits of UMA Esplanadi is its location in the heart of Helsinki just across from the Esplanade in one of the city’s toniest addresses. It is in the same building as the Academic Bookshop designed by renown Finnish architect Alvar Aalto.
“This central location means it’s easy and fast for me to get to work and easy to leave to meet clients and attend business meetings without spending an inordinate amount of the work day in travel,” says Toikkanen.
This excellent location means other UMA members can do the same so the constant mix of people is a definite professional plus.
Toikkanen also says the atmosphere is warm. He enjoys being greeted with a smile and a ‘Good Morning’ from the reception staff when he arrives, which sets a good mood for the day’s work.
“It’s a definite plus,” he says.
Contemporary Interior and Clear Layout
Toikkanen says that the stylish interior and clear layout of the space are important. The design of UMA Esplanadi is done to facilitate work and connectivity, both technically and personally. His work day usually starts with a cup of coffee and planning out the day. He often starts in the lobby for some chat and networking. Or, he takes a Skype call from his boss at MatchOffice, CEO Jakob Dalhoff, who works in Denmark.
When he needs a more tranquil space to work, he moves upstairs to the third floor where he settles into a quiet work spot with all the facilities he needs – and with a beautiful view of the city to boot!
Toikkanen appreciates the ergonomic design of UMA Esplanadi equipment and furniture, especially the electrically adjustable desks.
Toikkanen says he moves around between various work spaces during the day depending on the day’s work needs, which affords him great flexibility. And, there are phone booths scattered around the premises, including the lobby, where business calls can be conducted in privacy.
In addition to Toikkanen, MatchOffice Finland has one part-time employee who visits UMA Esplanadi a couple of days a week.
Networking and Social Interaction
Toikkanen says, “One of the bonuses of workspace such as UMA Esplanadi is that you can talk with other professionals to exchange ideas, create and socialize and get new views with people in many different lines of business, which is very enriching.”
In addition to the design and layout of the premises to encourage this, UMA Esplanadi goes the extra mile to provide opportunities for socializing and networking like the Tuesday morning breakfasts and Thursday after work get-togethers.
“Those are important opportunities,” says Toikkanen. “It’s great that Technopolis listens to our wishes and organizes such networking opportunities,” Toikkanen says.
Insight Born of Personal Experience
Toikkanen holds a master’s degree from the Hanken School of Economics in Helsinki where he wrote his thesis on shared workspaces for freelancers. While writing his thesis, he became aware of how important the working environment and the opportunity to meet other people are for work satisfaction and wellbeing.
Earlier, he worked from home himself, but after moving to UMA Esplanadi he soon noticed that leaving home in the morning to go to work elsewhere suited him better. He has heard others say the same.
“When you work at home, there’s the risk that your work day is slow to start and too quick to end, so you accomplish less.”
“Sooner or later, you will still need to meet deadlines and you get stressed,” Toikkanen says. “When you work in a place dedicated for work, with an undisturbed focus and at the right time, your free time is also less stressful and more enjoyable. When I’m here, I see other people working, and it energises me.”
Toikkanen’s own experience and what he learned while writing his thesis only confirmed to him that for most people, working around other people is more conducive to productivity, job satisfaction, and psychological and physical wellbeing. And, that doesn’t end with workday. The sense of satisfaction and wellbeing also carry over into one’s private activities.
We asked Toikkanen who he thought a workplace like this one is best suited for?
“For example, a company like us that has just a couple of employees in Finland. On the other hand, it is also ideal for freelancers who don’t want to work alone at home,” he says.
“Coworking spaces also have the benefit of freeing an entrepreneur from investing in office furniture. A coworking space provides the benefits of a full-fledged office easily and at a reasonable price.”
As the demand for coworking facilities rises in our changing work culture, UMA will continue to enjoy success. Technopolis is planning to expand UMA in Stockholm, Helsinki, Copenhagen, Oslo and in other major cities in the Nordic–Baltic Sea area. This will certainly mean many more satisfied customers like Jarkko Toikkanen and MatchOffice.
International growth company in the commercial property lease market. Started in Denmark in 2004, now operating at various locations across Europe. Started in Finland in 2015.
MatchOffice.fi is an independent commercial property portal collecting vacant properties under one address.
The company is a customer of UMA Esplanadi.