By Richard Leurig
As workforce models change and hybrid working continues to expand, physical workspace is becoming a premium resource more than ever. To find the workspace booking solution that’s right for their specific needs, businesses need to know what features to look for.
Earlier this year, a report from Scion Staffing, titled The Top Hybrid & Remote Work Trends to Know for 2023 and Beyond, stated: “In a competitive job market, companies can’t afford to not keep their employees happy. Offering a hybrid model and flexible work hours can attract top talent from across the country instead of limiting options for office workers to only local candidates.”
The same report went on to reveal that 46% of the hybrid workforce who work flexible schedules have reported higher job satisfaction, even when the schedule includes longer workdays.
Clearly, hybrid and remote work environments, and their efficient management, have an important role to play in the future of business growth as well as employee retention and satisfaction.
Whether the need is for a single desk or a fully equipped conference room, the ability to quickly search for and book workspaces for specific times and locations is now vital for the communication and efficiency of an organization.
Companies that want to stay on the competitive cutting-edge of remote/hybrid employee management will need to know, among other things, exactly what to look for in a workspace booking solution to ensure that they have the best, most efficient, tools at their disposal.
When looking for a workspace booking solution, there are several key factors to consider: ease of use; comprehensive analytics and space utilization; flexibility; the strength of its collaboration features; and, of course, security.
Ease of Use
Organizations should look for a solution that streamlines desk space booking, preferably with just one click. It’s helpful if it includes the ability to search by map or to set up user preferences like work location, room temperature, average noise level, etc.—and then have the tool automatically suggest the optimal workspace from those available.
The solution should be intuitive and user-friendly, allowing both workspace administrators and users to easily navigate and book spaces without extensive training or technical knowledge.
If the booking system is unnecessarily complicated, businesses will have a hard time getting widespread adoption by their workforce.
Companies should also consider the level of support and maintenance provided by the solution provider. It’s worth looking for a reliable vendor that offers regular updates, bug fixes, and responsive customer support to address any issues or questions that may arise.
Ease of use is a key success factor; by improving efficiency in the deployment, configuration, and booking implementation, team members can get the workspace booking system up and running quickly and with minimal effort.
Comprehensive Analytics Reporting And Workspace Utilization
A good workspace booking solution should provide reporting and analytics capabilities, giving administrators insights into space utilization, booking patterns, and trends. This information can help optimize space allocation and make data-driven decisions.
The solution should have robust space and resource management features, allowing administrators to define and manage various workspace types, capacities, amenities, and equipment.
It should also enable users to specify their requirements when booking, such as room setup, equipment needs, or additional services.
Organizations should look for a solution that offers flexibility in booking options, such as different time slots (hourly, daily, weekly), multiple locations, and the ability to book in advance or on short notice. The tool should also allow for recurring bookings if needed.
In addition, the solution should allow customization to match the organization’s branding and other requirements. To streamline the booking process, it should integrate with existing systems, such as calendars, email notifications, and access control systems.
In today’s mobile-centric world, it’s also crucial to choose a solution that offers a mobile app or a responsive web interface, allowing users to book workspaces on the go and receive notifications about their bookings.
The solution should provide real-time information on the availability of workspaces, enabling users to see which spaces are free and to make immediate bookings. It should also automatically update the system when a booking is made or canceled.
In terms of easy administration, the tool should support user management, allowing administrators to control access and permissions based on roles and responsibilities. It should also enable easy onboarding and offboarding of users.
Scalability and integration are important features to consider as well. Businesses will want to ensure that the solution can scale as the organization grows and will integrate with other software and hardware solutions they may be using, or will likely add in the future, such as building management systems or access control systems.
Whether you call it office hoteling, hot desking, or anything else, today’s employees demand flexibility in where and how they work. The best workspace booking solutions make it easier and faster to book space when and where an employee needs it.
By considering these key factors, organizations can find a workspace booking solution that aligns with their requirements and enhances the efficiency and productivity of their workspace management processes. This will help them make the best possible use of valuable office real estate and time.
Leurig is a Chief Product and Technology Officer for Accruent. As Chief Product and Technology Officer, he is responsible for the Accruent global engineering, product and information security teams. Richard is an accomplished executive with nearly 30 years of experience driving customer-focused and commercially successful innovation in complex product and technology portfolios for several major organizations.