The concept of hot desking has gained popularity as a flexible and cost-effective office arrangement. Hot desking involves the shared use of office workstations, allowing employees to choose different desks each day based on their specific needs. In order to keep your employees from playing ring-around-the-desk, you need to add other components to make your program successful. Use these 10 hot desking solutions to make your office run smoothly and support your employees:
1. Embrace Technology
Invest in modern technology and tools to facilitate hot desking. Utilize cloud-based collaboration platforms, virtual desktops, and digital communication tools to enable seamless access to files and communication regardless of the desk an employee chooses.
The first technology tool to ensure your success is a hot desking reservation system. This type of system is integral to running a hot desking workspace. Depending on your reservation system, employees can book a spot on their own without needing to go through a reservationist. This can reduce bottlenecks and give your employee more autonomy over what and where they book.
Other important technologies include:
- Cloud-based document management, like Google Workspace and Microsoft 365
- Communication tools, like Slack or Teams
2. Design Functional Workspaces
Create a well-designed office layout that accommodates an agile work environment like hot desking. Provide ergonomic furniture, noise-canceling dividers, and designated collaboration areas to enhance productivity and ensure employees feel comfortable in any workspace they choose.
This can include:
- Acoustic pods and other compact, collaborative spaces, like Urban Office.
- Standing desks
- A company-designated equipment borrowing or check-out program
3. Implement a Desk Booking System
Implement a desk booking system to allow employees to reserve desks in advance. This ensures that they have a guaranteed workspace when they arrive, preventing frustration and unnecessary time spent searching for an available desk.
What to look for in a hot desking reservation system:
- The ability to self-book
- Booking analytics
- Floor plan
- The option to search desks based on specific features (dual monitors, co-working desk, etc.)
4. Provide Sufficient Storage Solutions
Offer secure storage options for employees to store their personal belongings and essential work items. Lockers or designated storage areas can help employees feel more at ease when using different desks throughout the week.
5. Add a Visitor Management System
Implement a visitor management system to streamline the check-in process for visitors. A digital system allows for efficient registration, real-time tracking of visitors, and automated notifications to on-site contacts to match the flexibility and efficiency of a dynamic office environment like hot desking.
Take a product tour of the feature-rich visitor management system, The Receptionist for iPad:
6. Establish Clean Desk Policy
Encourage employees to maintain a clean and organized workspace. Implement a clean desk policy, requiring employees to clear their desks of personal items and documents at the end of each workday to promote a tidy and professional environment.
7. Promote Collaboration Spaces
Create dedicated collaboration spaces or meeting rooms where employees can brainstorm, collaborate, or hold discussions. These spaces can supplement individual workstations and foster teamwork despite the dynamic nature of hot desking.
8. Provide Comfortable Break Areas
Offer comfortable break areas with amenities like coffee machines, snacks, and comfortable seating. Employees are more likely to appreciate the benefits of hot desking when they have pleasant places to take breaks and socialize.
9. Develop Clear Guidelines
Establish clear guidelines and expectations for hot desking. Communicate the rules regarding desk reservations, clean desk policies, and appropriate use of shared resources to ensure a smooth hot desking experience for all employees.
10. Plug and Play Set Up
Offering a plug-and-play setup is essential to your hot desking program’s success. Most hot desking programs assume the employee will bring their own laptop or tablet. But, if you think it would be more useful, you can offer desktops or stationary laptops as part of your hot desking program. This reduces the amount of equipment that your employees will need to bring with them to the office.
Whether you offer just the desk or the entire workstation, there are a few mandatory tools you need to facilitate a solid work experience. These tools include:
- A universal docking station is essential for all desks. Look for a docking station that can accommodate both Mac and PC users, and that includes USB-A and USB-C ports.
- An external monitor is a must, but having dual monitors can be a game-changer for productivity.
- A mouse and a keyboard that are compatible with the hardware your employees use most.
- A charging station for laptops, tablets, and smartphones.
- A power outlet that’s easily accessible (i.e. not under a desk and out of reach).
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