Hot-desking: Situations where desk sharing can make a lot of sense

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There are certain situations where hot-desking can bring a lot of benefits to organizations. Having a dedicated office space for desk sharing can help provide a good working environment for employees who may not need to be in the office every day while allowing companies to capture savings in their office space requirements. This article explores the situations were hot-desking can be particularly attractive.

Employees often travel to different offices

If you have certain employees that work across two or more different offices, then having a space in each office to accommodate these multi-office employees can be a good idea. Hot-desking can allow employees to have an office space, while avoiding the need to maintain a dedicated desk for all multi-office employees in each location that they work. 

A hybrid office combining a lot of work from home

A hot-desking environment can also be a good arrangement when there is a high proportion of workers that work from home for at least part of the week. Having desks that such employees are able to occupy on days where they come into the office can help facilitate this hybrid work, while also reducing the office space requirements for companies. 

A high proportion of temporary workers

Another situation where hot-desking can work well is if there is a high proportion of temporary employees. It can be expensive to set up desk space – hot-desking provides a flexible way of providing desks for such temporary employees. 

Attempts to create a very flat culture, where everyone is treated the same

A final situation where hot-desking may make a lot of sense is if you are specifically trying to create a very equal, flat culture, where there is a limited distinction between management and employees. Having a hot-desking policy – equally applied to management and employees can both foster interpersonal relationships between management and employees, while also reducing the sense of distinction between the levels. Of course, this requires management to actually be on board with hot-desking – there are certainly occasions where management like the idea of a flat-office culture, but prefer maintaining some distinctions associated with having a higher status. 

Final thoughts: You need not apply hot-desking to all of your workers

It is important to remember that while there may need to be a critical mass of employees with hot-desking requirements for the approach to make sense, there is no specific need to apply it to all of your employees. There may be certain groups for example that come in every day – where permanent desks may make sense. There may be another group of hybrid workers where the approach does make sense – and if you have a clear rationale for which workers will have a permanent office, and which ones will have hot-desking arrangements, a split may be a good setup.