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Guide to setting up a worker co-op

Co-ops can be very powerful, but it’s not for everyone. Find out what it involves and where to find out more.

Birmingham Bike Foundry

Things you need to think about

If you are thinking about setting up or converting to a worker co-op, you need to be sure that you:

  • Understand what a co-operative is and what this will mean for your business and your workers
  • Are all willing to follow the co-operative principles and values 
  • Are all happy that all members have an equal say and share in the running of the business
  • Have agreed and understand how decisions will be made in a democratic way
  • Have read and understood the Worker Co-op Code


The Worker Co-op Code

The Worker Co-op Code sets out anyone should expect and work together to achieve, as a member of a worker co-operative.
At Outlandish the workers have equal and direct control over all decisions. We find that this has created a really positive working environment, and ensures people are engaged in the success of the co-op. We reinvest all our surplus income into projects that use technology to create a fairer, better world, and support the growth of the digital co-operative economy.
- Polly Robbins, worker-owner, Outlandish
The worker owners at Outlandish
- Outlandish are a digital agency owned by the workers

Is it right for me? Am I ready?

Answer our questions to decide which ownership solution is right for you

Remember you also need to have a viable business idea. Have you carried out a feasibility study and created a business plan?

Use our step by step tool for starting a co-op

Check out the worker co-op code

Ready to go?

Check out our step by step guide to starting a co-op

Want to know more about worker co-ops?

Complete our expression of interest form

Be inspired by other worker co-ops

Worker co-ops are found in all sectors - read some of our case studies and be inspired