What is office hoteling and how can it benefit your business?

August 15th, 2023 • 10 min read
Blog Hybrid Work What is office hoteling and how can it benefit your business?
Blog Hybrid Work What is office hoteling and how can it benefit your business?

Workspace hoteling is an emerging phenomenon in the realm of professional office administration. Depending on its application, this concept has bestowed coworking spaces and collaborative work areas with increased agility, effectiveness, adaptability, and efficacy. Moreover, it grants occupants the opportunity to effortlessly form teams in close proximity.

What is meant by the term "office hoteling"?

Office hoteling, also referred to as desk hoteling or simply "hoteling," is a flexible approach that involves reserving a desk or room within your workplace for a predetermined period. As its name implies, the concept operates similarly to a traditional hotel experience. Comparable to making a hotel reservation, individuals book their desired workspace, check in, utilize the space during their reservation period, and then check out

The complexity and scope of hoteling can vary according to the specific workplace environment. This arrangement is accessible to a diverse range of individuals who may have a reason to be present at the office, including hybrid teams, part-time or full-time employees, contractors, and authorized visitors. Furthermore, this approach is adaptable to businesses that function within coworking or shared workspaces, facilitating the booking of shared areas by employees from different companies. The specifics of office hoteling can differ based on factors such as location, duration of stay, and the size of the designated desk or room.

For the sake of simplicity, this discussion will predominantly focus on employees reserving workspaces. Additionally, the terms "hoteling" and "office hoteling" will be used interchangeably throughout this post, as they signify the same concept.

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Office Hoteling Drives Demand

Consider the analogy of airline companies not expecting every seat on every flight to be occupied, or car rental companies not assuming that every vehicle will be rented out at all times. Conversely, workspace providers view unoccupied desks as inefficiency rather than natural demand fluctuations. The concept of office hoteling enables providers to project a consistently thriving image, with workspaces consistently in use and in demand.

Moreover, rather than assigning a permanent desk to a member who primarily works remotely, hoteling enables providers to minimize the physical space required to support their workforce. This presents an opportunity to reconfigure the layout and allocate open areas that on-site employees can utilize for collaborative endeavors.

The reduction in required square footage also translates to lower expenditures on rent and utilities, ultimately resulting in increased available funds. Leveraging sophisticated workspace management software allows for precise monitoring and measurement of workspace usage down to the exact square footage.

Advantages of Office Hoteling

Office hoteling is a dynamic approach to adapt your workspace according to the preferences of your employees and visitors. Here are four significant ways in which office hoteling can bring benefits to your organization, individuals, and work environment.

1. Enhanced Productivity and Collaboration

With a considerable 77% of organizations embracing hybrid work models, flexibility becomes a crucial factor in their success. However, even with this widespread adoption, certain employees remain hesitant to return to the office. One reason behind this reluctance is their perception of increased productivity when working from home. Office distractions and time-consuming commutes can hamper productivity and influence the choice to work remotely.

Office hoteling provides employees the opportunity to work efficiently on-site by allowing them to select workspaces that cater to their productivity needs, helping them enter a focused state of work. Furthermore, it encourages collaboration. For instance, teams can reserve a cluster of desks or a spacious meeting room to collaborate in person during specific timeframes. The arrangement also fosters impromptu collaboration through close proximity, enabling spontaneous discussions and fresh insights.

2. Efficient Utilization of Workspace

Effective space management is a trending topic as workplace leaders seek ways to optimize their available space. Office hoteling serves as an effective strategy to reduce real estate expenditures while configuring the workspace to align with employee requirements. Similar to hot desking, office hoteling minimizes wasted space by eliminating unused desks, thereby creating room for diverse types of work environments.Additionally, office hoteling contributes to a more organized workspace, as fewer individuals translate to fewer personal items and clutter. This results in a cleaner and more streamlined office setting.

Pro Tip: If you're uncertain about your workspace usage patterns, investing in space management software can provide valuable insights and guide decisions to enhance the workspace for your organization's specific needs.

3. Cost Savings

Traditional permanent desk assignments are gradually becoming outdated due to their higher cost compared to office hoteling or hot desking. Permanent desks demand more office space, making hoteling a cost-effective solution. The concept revolves around the idea that employees utilize fewer desks more frequently. According to a Global Workplace Analytics report by IWG, organizations can save approximately $11,000 per remote worker annually if they work remotely half the week.

4. Prioritizing Safety and Well-being

Office hoteling empowers you to allocate desks based on your office's capacity and social distancing guidelines, thereby ensuring a safe working environment for your employees. The daily usage log aids your janitorial team in efficiently sanitizing desks between users, contributing to the health and safety of your workforce.

In the current landscape of the COVID-19 pandemic, the adoption of office hoteling can emerge as a strategic solution for creating a secure and efficient workstation for your employees. However, the successful implementation of this approach hinges on the presence of a centralized booking and management system. Leveraging a unified coworking platform not only facilitates workstation allocation and social distancing enforcement but also empowers you to optimize the utilization of available spaces. Access to detailed entry and exit times, along with information on commonly utilized communal areas, enables you to effectively strategize your workspace arrangements.

To effectively implement desk hoteling best practices within the context of COVID-19, consider arranging the workstation in a manner that assigns numerical identifiers to desks, simplifying their location for individuals with only the reserved seat number as reference. Additionally, ensuring convenient access to amenities and the facility, along with the incorporation of health surveys and contact tracing, contributes to an enhanced user experience and satisfaction. These measures also enable diligent monitoring of health and safety standards within the workspace.

Determining If Office Hoteling is Right for Your Business

After understanding the key advantages of hoteling, you might be contemplating whether it aligns with your business needs. Here's a guide to help you evaluate if office hoteling is a suitable choice for your organization.

Hoteling is a versatile solution that can benefit businesses seeking to revamp their operational approach. Specifically, office hoteling is particularly well-suited for:

  • Businesses with Scaling Ambitions: If you're a start-up or a business aiming to expand, committing to a larger office space might not be immediately feasible. Hoteling presents an effective strategy to accommodate workforce growth without necessitating physical space expansion
  • Co-Working Environments: Hoteling is a pivotal component of the co-working model, as evidenced by the success of WeWork and similar setups. For businesses exploring co-working spaces, hoteling ensures the security of a reserved workstation for you and your team whenever required.
  • Fully Remote Businesses: For companies that have transitioned to a fully remote model without a central headquarters but still desire opportunities for in-person collaboration, hoteling provides an excellent solution. It caters to employees seeking a change of scenery or occasions to convene as a team.
  • Efficiency-Driven Businesses: If your business aims to optimize its office footprint without reducing staff numbers, hoteling presents a compelling solution. This approach empowers you to manage your workstation with enhanced efficiency while maintaining workforce size.

Ultimately, the decision to embrace office hoteling depends on factors unique to your business, such as growth aspirations, operational model, remote work approach, and workspace optimization goals. Assessing these elements in alignment with the benefits of hoteling will help you determine if it's the right fit for your organization.

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