Hot Desking: What Companies Need to Know Today

Hot desking is fast gaining traction in the hybrid workplace.
Hot desking is fast gaining traction in the hybrid workplace. Image by Rodeo Software.

Hot desking, a concept that might sound novel to some, is swiftly becoming a staple in the modern workplace. But what is hot desking? At its core, hot desking is a desk-sharing, space-saving strategy where employees don’t have fixed desks. Instead, they choose an available workspace upon arriving at the office. This means that a particular desk might be used by different employees at different times, depending on their schedules. This approach challenges the traditional workspace setup and introduces a dynamic environment that fosters flexibility and collaboration.

Hot Desking, Hoteling, or Hotel Desks?

One aspect to note is the difference between hot desking and hotel desks or hoteling. The concept of hoteling is where employees reserve a specific desk in advance of their arrival at the workplace. While many of the advantages are similar when hot desking or hoteling, this is an important distinction to be aware of. Hotel desks, a practice derived from hot desking, involves providing workspaces that are not permanently assigned to any single employee but are available to all on an as-needed basis. This approach is akin to the hoteling system, where employees book a workspace for a specific time period, much like a hotel room reservation. This model is particularly suited to the hybrid work environment, where the number of employees in the office varies from day to day. It optimizes office space utilization, reduces overhead costs, and supports a dynamic and collaborative work culture by allowing employees to choose where they work based on their daily needs, tasks, and collaboration requirements.

Advantages of Hot Desking: Why More and More Companies are Switching

The advantages of hot desking are manifold. Firstly, it maximizes office space usage. With not all employees being present at the same time, fewer desks are required, translating to potential cost savings. In some instances up to 30% when compared to the traditional costs of running an office. Secondly, this system can enhance collaboration. With employees constantly shifting and sitting beside different colleagues, there’s increased opportunity for cross-departmental interaction and idea exchange.

And with nobody “owning” a desk, there is more acceptance that some employees are more mobile than others, whilst being just as productive. Greater equality and improved collaboration resulting from hot desking is something that is also likely to attract and retain motivated employees.

Disadvantages of Hot Desking and How to Overcome Them

However, like any system, hot desking has its disadvantages as well as its advantages.

One of the primary disadvantages of hot desking is the potential lack of personalization. Employees might miss having a space to call their own, decorated with personal items. This can be mitigated by providing smart lockers, cubbies or other style of storage spaces like credenzas where personal items ranging from a spare pair of office shoes, a notepad, or a toothbrush can be kept.

Concerns about hot desking sometimes revolve around hygiene, especially in today’s health-conscious world. However, you can address this by implementing regular cleaning protocols and providing employees with sanitizing products. Another concern is the potential for increased distractions, given the dynamic nature of seating. A solution here is to have dedicated quiet zones or rooms where employees can go for focused work.

There’s also the logistical challenge of ensuring everyone has the resources they need, ranging from enough coffee to connecting the right printers, no matter where they sit.

For printing, there are third-party solutions such as ezeep Blue which eliminate any challenges hot desking strategies can throw at you. ezeep Blue is a cloud-based printing solution tailored for companies looking to adopt hot desking in their workspaces. Addressing common challenges, it enables users to dynamically print to any available printer in the vicinity of their chosen desk for the day, whether they are operating from virtual desktops, smartphones, or just standard desktops. Features like AnyPrinter and Print Later not only simplify the printer mapping process but also ensure protection of confidential printed documents by ensuring that they only are printed after an authorized user releases them at a printer. The platform is also compatible with Azure Virtual Desktop, Windows 365 Cloud PC or other workspace virtualisation tools from Citrix or VMware and supports a broad range of devices and printers.

Hot Desking Offers More Advantages than Disadvantages

In conclusion, hot desking is a transformative approach that offers numerous benefits, however, its success does depend on careful implementation. With the right strategies in place to deal with the changes to the workplace, businesses can harness its advantages while minimizing potential drawbacks. And when it comes to printing for new and hybrid workspaces, make sure you take a closer look at ezeep Blue’s cloud-managed printing service.

This is one of a series of posts focusing on hot desking. You can learn more and read the other posts here: