Why Businesses Are Encouraging Hot Desking
Conventional models of workplace organisation for office-based businesses are steadily being challenged. As the idea that, with a laptop, a smartphone and an internet connection, you can theoretically work from anywhere continues to take hold, more businesses are adopting increasingly flexible working practices, encouraging home and remote working and operating with a geographically dispersed workforce.
This is having an impact on the way offices themselves are set up and organised. Hot desking refers to the practice of staff not having fixed workstations. Instead, the company provides shared, generic spaces that people can move around as they please. A hot desk set up relies either on staff having their own laptops that they carry around with them, or on using cloud-based IT systems that allow user account access from any device.
So why exactly are businesses moving towards this much more fluid operational model?
The first benefit is the fact that hot desking is an ideal foil if you want to give staff more flexibility about where they work. If you are going to loosen the ties that demand everyone come into the office to work, giving staff the option to work from home a lot of the time, running a one person, one desk policy quickly becomes inefficient. If people do not come into the office everyday, having a fixed desk for everyone means a lot of space is wasted a lot of the time.
Hot desking therefore allows for a degree of rationalisation in equipment and use of space. You might find that, alongside a remote working policy, you can comfortably operate with a third less furniture and IT hardware. Space can be freed up to make the office a more welcoming, clutter-free environment. And, of course, less equipment means lower costs.
Tidier and friendlier
Speaking of clutter – when people are used to regularly moving from desk to desk, they will not let things build up that make their workstations look untidy. Paper, stationery and personal items have to be taken with them at the end of each day. This is also likely to make people more efficient in how they use resources.
Businesses in favour of hot desking find that it helps to improve collaboration and communication across the workforce. Some have gone as far as abolish departmental zones altogether, meaning that staff from across different teams are more likely to meet and form bonds,
Not only is this good for morale, it means that staff are have more opportunities to learn about the bigger picture of how the business operates and how their work fits into it all. Everyone will get exposed to fresh new ideas and can apply the best ones to their own work, and over time companies can expect to see everyone working to a more cohesive set of common goals.
Finally, there is a school of thought that hot desking and other flexible working arrangements encourage people to take greater responsibility in their work. Freeing people from fixed organisational structures, often with a very clear hierarchy and direct system of oversight, requires a degree of trust to be placed in individuals. While this can seem like a risk, the upshot is that it could give staff the confidence they need to become more innovative and proactive.
At The Colony HQ, we offer a flexible range of luxurious serviced office solutions that can be set up to meet the needs of your business. For more details, get in touch today.