Desk Hoteling 2023: How Does It Work?
The COVID-19 pandemic has transformed the way employees and businesses approach workspaces and workflow. Public health guidelines sent workers home for months–or years–at a time, and companies were forced to develop systems and practices to allow for high levels of remote collaboration and productivity.
Even though many public health officials believe we are transitioning out of the pandemic stage of COVID, that doesn’t mean that it’s back to business as usual. Employees have discovered that remote work provides them with flexibility and work/life balance that they want to retain, and in the current climate of labor shortages and the Great Resignation, businesses can’t afford to ignore their employees’ preferences.
According to some estimates, up to 70% of companies have moved or will move to a remote or hybrid work environment. In light of these changes, company leaders are reconceptualizing what an office should look like and how it should function. It just doesn’t make sense to have permanent, assigned work stations for employees who work remotely several days a week. One solution that is gaining traction in many corporate offices is the desk hoteling system.
What is Desk Hoteling?
Desk hoteling, also known as office hoteling, is a system that ditches assigned offices and desks in favor of a more hotel-like reservation process. On days when employees plan to work on-site, they simply book the workstation they would like to use for that day. The process follows the same steps as booking a hotel room: make a reservation, receive a confirmation, check in, and check out. With more and more employees spending much of their work time at home, desk hoteling eliminates the wasted space of having assigned desks sitting empty most of the week. The model is gaining popularity: about 31% of employers are considering a move to desk hoteling.
In addition to reservable work stations, another trend for desk hoteling in 2023 is to offer more open, collaborative spaces in the office. When hybrid remote workers choose to travel to the office, it usually is not to accomplish solo tasks they could complete from home. Rather, it is often for the express purpose of working more intimately with their team. Therefore, a good hoteling system isn’t just about reserving desks; instead, it offers a variety of flexible work spaces that can be booked as needed for meetings and collaboration.
Why Choose Desk Hoteling?
Workplace platform SpaceIQ describes the benefits of desk hoteling succinctly: it offers a “marriage of order and freedom.” A well-executed hoteling system provides the flexibility of hybrid remote scheduling, the benefits of in-office collaboration, and workspaces that are tailored to the tasks at hand. And it offers all of this while potentially reducing real estate costs.
Benefits for Companies
For many offices, hoteling may be the puzzle piece that makes a permanent hybrid model feasible. Hoteling provides two options to reconfigure your office space that is opened up through remote work. First, you can choose to save money by reducing your real estate footprint. Companies can adjust their square footage to suit the number of employees who will be on-site at a time–just make sure you consider any peak days when more people will be in the office. The second option is to utilize that extra space to improve or grow your business. Instead of having to fill the office with as many workstations as possible, you can create more room for client meetings, corporate events, or even expansion of your business.
Benefits for Employees
Clearly, one of desk hoteling’s top benefits for employees is its focus on hybrid remote work, and all the flexibility and life balance that comes with it. But the system also provides improved flexibility and equity when at the office. Instead of being tied to a single desk, office, or cubicle, every employee has the opportunity to reserve the best spots in the office–no longer are the nicest views or comfiest chairs just reserved for upper management. Adding collaborative spaces allows employees to get the social interaction they may be missing while working remote, and the hoteling model allows for a more fluid, less rigid atmosphere. Co-working platform Yardi Kube also suggests that companies use hoteling to improve employee morale, by using empty offices as recreational space and by including employees in the design of workstations and collaborative spaces. Companies can use the transition to hoteling as an employee-centered reset to their office layout and culture.
Tips for Switching to Desk Hoteling
According to the online business journal BizWomen, a major challenge in getting employees to return to the office–even on a hybrid schedule–is that companies are now competing with their workers’ homes. It is up to businesses to make their desk hoteling setup appealing to employees in 2023, so that in-office days will feel like an opportunity rather than a punishment. Bosses can provide comforts of home like snacks and couch seating, and they can also focus heavily on the collaborative and social uses of shared spaces.
Second, before implementing hoteling in your workplace, you must make sure that all necessary technology and organization is in place. That means a centralized booking and co-working platform, as well as proper employee training on using the software.
Third, you’ll want to designate a specific staff member to manage the booking of work spaces. Even if all booking is handled online, you will still need a flesh-and-blood human to oversee the calendar and handle any scheduling conflicts.
Get Ready with Custom Office Supplies
So you’re all set up with a great new desk hoteling system–now it’s time to stock your redesigned office with all the supplies your employees will need. Merchology offers high-quality, logo-branded products that will help your transition to a hoteling, hybrid work environment.
Keep your collaborative spaces stocked with custom logo notebooks and corporate pens and pencils to encourage easy planning and coordination. Plus, a variety of logo-branded tumblers, mugs, and water bottles from our custom logo Drinkware collection will make your snack bar or staff kitchen both convenient and on-brand.
And perhaps the best corporate gifts to give employees for desk hoteling are our custom Laptop Bags and corporate Work Backpacks. Our sturdy and attractive custom bags will make it a breeze for remote workers to pack up and transport their work tech and supplies for a day at the office.
Contact Us at Merchology!
Desk hoteling is an exciting development in the corporate world, and we’re ready to help you order useful, high-quality merch to support your transition. Contact a Merchologist today to find the perfect corporate gifts for your desk hoteling team!