Hot desking is a type of work arrangement in which employees do not have assigned desks or workspaces. Instead, workers can choose to sit anywhere they want within the office each day. The hot desking concept is gaining popularity as more and more companies embrace flexible and hybrid work arrangements. If you're considering implementing hot desking in your own workplace, here's everything you need to know.
The term "hot desking" is believed to have originated in the late 1990s, when it was used to describe the practice of sharing desks between multiple workers in order to maximize office space.
However, the concept of hot desking didn't really start gaining traction until the early 2000s when internet startups began adopting the practice as a way to save money on office space.
In order for hot desking to work properly, employers need to provide employees with access to all the resources they need to do their jobs, such as meeting rooms, common areas, storage spaces, etc. To make sure everyone has access to the same resources, employers often use some kind of check-in/check-out system.
For example, an employee might check out a laptop from the IT department before starting their workday, and then return it at the end of the day.
There are several different ways to implement hot desking in the workplace.
The most common method is to have an open floor plan where employees can choose any available seat when they arrive at the office.
Another method is to assign seats based on the task at hand or the project that employees are working on. For example, if two employees are working on the same project, they would sit next to each other so they can easily collaborate.
As mentioned above, one of the challenges with hot desking is making sure everyone has access to the resources they need to do their jobs effectively.
To avoid problems, employers need to have a system in place for distributing resources (e.g., laptops, projectors, etc.), and employees need to be aware of where they can find these resources when they need them.
Another challenge with hot desking is maintaining privacy and confidentiality for sensitive documents and conversations. When workers don't have assigned desks or workspaces, it can be difficult to guarantee that only authorized people will see or hear confidential information. To mitigate this risk, employers should provide employees with access to private spaces where they can conduct confidential conversations or work on sensitive projects away from prying eyes and ears.
Since hot deskers don't have assigned desks or workspaces, there's always the potential for conflict over who gets which workspace on any given day. To avoid problems, employers should develop a workspace selection process that is fair and transparent (e.g., first come, first served). Employees should also be encouraged to be respectful of their colleagues' workspace preferences and needs.
There are many potential benefits of hot desking for businesses, including:
One of the most notable benefits of hot desking is that it can increase collaboration among employees. When people are assigned to different desks each day, they're more likely to interact with co-workers that they wouldn't normally work with. This leads to increased collaboration and knowledge sharing among employees.
Hot desking therefore help to create a more collaborative environment, as employees are more likely to share ideas when they are sitting side by side.
Improved communication is another benefit of hot desking. When employees are sitting in close proximity to each other, they're more likely to strike up conversations and ask each other for help or input on projects.
This increased communication can lead to better ideas and solutions for problems that arise during the workday.
When everyone has their own desk, they tend to stay in their own little world and only interact with the people they already know. But when hot desking, employees are forced to mingle and sit with different people every day. This encourages them to get to know more people in the company and opens up lines of communication that might otherwise have stayed closed. So if your company is looking for ways to improve communication, hot desking is definitely worth considering.
Hot desking can be a great way to improve the employee experience by fostering creativity in the workplace.
A recent study found that hot desking can actually increase creativity. It found that employees who hot desk reported feeling more creative and more productive than those who had their own dedicated workspace. The researchers believe that hot desking encourages people to view their work environment as a " blank canvas" that they can personalize and make their own and therefore encourages creative mindset.
Additionally, hot desking can help to reduce office costs by eliminating the need for extra desk space. And, since hot desking generally involves using shared workstations, it can also help to encourage a more sustainable work environment.
Overall, Hot desking can be a great way to improve the employee experience. It fosters collaboration and creativity, creates a stronger sense of community within the workplace, and it can also save your company money on office space.
It also definitely brings some challenges. Fortunately, there are some solutions to these challenges. By using a hybrid work solution and some smart tools, you can make hot desking work for your company while still keeping your employees happy.