The idea of hot desking, or foregoing the traditional assigned workstation office organization method, is increasing in popularity, and for good reason. There might be several pros and cons to it, but people are generally finding that the benefits outweigh the costs. Let’s go over how you can implement hot desking to save money and improve operations.
What is Hot Desking?
The easiest way to explain hot desking is “giving your employees freedom to choose where they work.” Instead of giving your team designated workstations, you instead leave it up to them where they work. You make a certain number of workstations available, then give your team the ability to reserve the space for their purposes. This doesn’t work for all parts of business, but it can be implemented for a surprising number of your employees.
The flexibility afforded by this workplace strategy brings with it plenty of benefits, but also a couple of drawbacks.
There are several benefits you can gain from hot desking.
- Cost savings: Thanks to remote and hybrid work taking off, hot desking gives you the ability to downsize your office space to reduce all kinds of costs, like utilities, rent, and insurance.
- Employee satisfaction and anti-siloing: When hot desking is the norm, people are more likely to get to know each other and share information across departments, meaning that there is far less siloing going on. Furthermore, people will just be happier from getting to know others at the office.
- Improved collaboration opportunities: The above ultimately culminates in more collaboration between departments and individuals, as they will be more likely to engage with others.
On the other hand, there are several reasons why hot desking might not work out so well.
- Harder to find people: The flexibility of the hot desking strategy is nice, but it can be hard to find people when they are never in any specific spot. This can make impromptu meetings more difficult to pull off when needed.
- Feelings of no support: If people are all over the place all the time, then some employees might feel like they lack the support structure to work effectively.
- Unpleasant competition: You need to have a fair system in place for employees to reserve space, otherwise the competition for the best spots could create tension in the office.
How to Manage Your Hot Desking Workplace
If hot desking sounds like an interesting strategy for you to try, then we recommend you aim for the following:
If you’re going to radically alter the dynamic in your office, then you should keep track of the policies and procedures you have in place moving forward. Keep track of what responsibilities your employees have, as well as the processes they need to follow and work through.
You want a way for employees to reserve space in your office for when they need it, so to help this along, we recommend a system that allows them to book space ahead of time. A little predictability can go a long way toward helping employees be effective. It also ensures you don’t run out of space for your team.
Zoning your office can also help your business manage its space appropriately. For example, if one team has distracting work, then you can partition off your office so they will have a minimal impact on your other staff members.
When space can be reserved by anyone, it tends to lead to spaces becoming overly simplified with little room for personalization, if any at all. You can give your team secure storage space for their personal items or places to customize as they see fit. You can also give your team some control over their workstation by equipping them with standing desks, chairs, adjustable monitors, and the like, all in an effort to make each one feel like they can be changed to suit the workers’ needs.
No one likes working in a filthy environment, so ensure that people clean up after themselves and are cognizant of the fact that their workstation is being used by multiple people. Equip your office with antibacterial wipes, hand sanitizer, and other cleaning supplies to keep things neat.
On the digital side of the house, make sure you also implement a cloud-based solution that can be used to keep files stored in a secure and easily-accessible way, regardless of the workstation being used.
Finally, there are plenty of technology solutions out there you can implement to help make the hot desking task even easier to pull off. You’ll want to ensure that all of your networking equipment, desktop technology, and software are in order, otherwise you’ll be stepping into a logistical nightmare.
Let Us Help Your Hot Desking Process
Managed IT services can help you tackle the above issues and implement hot desking policies that set you up for success. To learn more, give us a call at 888-428-0599.