How to Make the Desk Booking Accessible for All

  • Published On: October 27, 2021
  • |
  • Updated On: November 19, 2021
  • |
  • Desk Booking Software

As offices reopen and hybrid workspaces gain traction, desk booking software seems to be propelled to the spotlight. This blog explores how a desk booking solution can allow organizations manage their hybrid workplace. It also highlights the best ways to make the solution accessible to all.  

The world as employers and employees knew it transformed overnight. The onset of the COVID-19 pandemic changed how companies think about workspaces significantly. The spread of the Coronavirus propelled nearly 47% of companies to adapt to remote working full-time to promote employee safety. With the number of cases reducing and the vaccination programs picking up pace worldwide, organizations are slowly calling employees back to the office. 

This involves switching to a hybrid workplace system. Why? That’s because a global survey reveals that 72.2% of employees were entirely on board with re-joining offices in a hybrid setting. 

A desk booking solution is integral to a hybrid workplace. Let us decode the buzz around hybrid workplaces, desk booking and how to make it accessible to all. 

 

In its traditional sense, a hybrid workspace offers a mix of offices and cubicles, allowing employees to access them according to their convenience easily. During the pandemic, its meaning has changed to workspaces that enable employees to seamlessly split their work between home and office.

The hybrid workplace refers to a model which offers a blend of remote work and office work. The arrangement can look different among companies. However, it typically includes the on-site presence of some teams on given days, while others may complete their tasks by working from home depending on their convenience and work requirements.

hybrid workspace

At the same time, employees may be requested to attend in-person meetings and collaborative activities in the office itself. The hybrid workplace empowers employees with the opportunity to fit work assignments around their lives, as opposed to working fixed hours logged into a cubicle. 

This allows employees to retain flexibility in their work schedules. It reduces work transit when working from home while having a designated office workspace when required. Moreover, employers and facility managers can potentially reduce the space needed with a hybrid workspace, owing to fewer employees in-office at any given time.

You can have a centralized check-in process with desk booking software to ensure easy and flexible management of desks and designated workspaces. New-age hot desking tools can help locate employees, track desk occupancy, and delegate seats with real-time workplace analytics and interactive floor plans. Using desk booking software, you can prevent under-utilization of space, ghost bookings, overbooking, seat conflicts, and make locating employees quick and more straightforward.

Also Read: What is a desk booking software? 

Today, when workplaces are in constant flux, companies and startups alike are reconsidering workspace usage to save costs, promote collaboration, and facilitate seamless exchange of ideas between on and off-site employees. To make the most of the available space, organizations can deploy desk booking software. A well-designed desk booking software can serve as the key to managing a hybrid workplace, with employees balancing time between a remote and an on-site work setup.

Now, let’s understand why transitioning to a Covid-19-resistant hybrid work model is crucial and how desk booking tools can help.

 

A UK study revealed that 44% of the surveyed employees were not keen on returning to the office due to the risks associated with the pandemic. Concerns over contracting the virus and spreading it to family and friends have affected the mental health of 45% of employees, according to a McKinsey Survey, also affecting their productivity.

Since the Coronavirus spreads quickly in closed, congested spaces, reducing the number of in-person interactions, and implementing mask compliance is crucial to mitigating the COVID risk. A hybrid workspace minimizes the number of human interactions in offices significantly since it makes working remotely convenient. Additionally, organizations can implement physical distancing measures and mask compliance easily due to the reduced number of people coming into the office.

To take employee health safety a notch further, using desk booking software to plan office spaces can reduce human interaction, ensure timely sanitization, and make employees comply with COVID-19 regulations by design. 

Let’s look at how desk booking software enables this.

Bonus Read: WHO Guidelines for Office Sanitization

 

 

#1 Adherence to Physical Distancing Protocols Using a Desk Booking Software

desk booking

A desk booking software allows facility managers to design an office space compliant with physical distancing restrictions. Managers can assign desks located at a safe distance as available for use. The interactive dashboard will display all the in-use and empty desks in real-time. 

Employees can then use the desk booking software to book from the pool of available desks in advance from their homes or when they enter the office via a simple click. This way, since the dashboard will only show the available desks, it will ultimately eliminate any chances of over-crowding, thereby mitigating COVID-risk.

Recommended Reading: How to choose a desk booking software 

 

#2 Optimizing Spaces for Team Collaborations With a Desk Booking Software

Employees can also collaborate better using desk booking software by booking the spaced desks in the vicinity of other team members. This increases their productivity and allows the team to attain their goals while adhering to the necessary protocols.

 

#3 Scheduling in-Office Rotations for Employees Using Desk Booking Software

A desk booking software instantly updates the desks booked and the employee information, enabling managers and employers to track employee availability and locations. With this data, planning in-office schedules for employees and implementing employee rotation strategies becomes convenient. 

Additionally, if COVID-19 exposure is detected within office premises, facility managers can use the seating data to quarantine the exposed employees immediately for contact tracing purposes.

 

#4 Managing Timely Sanitization Through a Desk Booking Software

desk booking solution 

Regular sanitization of workplaces has become a necessity during the pandemic to prevent the spread of the virus. The centralized dashboard in desk booking software allows managers to get a snapshot view of the desk usage, helping them direct the cleaning staff for routine cleaning. 

Besides, advanced desk booking software also enables organizations to automate sanitization schedules. In this way, when an employee vacates a desk for the day, sanitation teams are automatically notified to clean the surfaces, instantly prepping the space for the next employee.

Also Read: Employee Safety Checklist 

Furthermore, in the case of a COVID outbreak within the office, evacuation can be timed along with sanitization while ensuring all the necessary precautions are in place.

Designing a workspace that is COVID-19 compliant using desk booking software is one part of creating an ideal hybrid workspace. Another important aspect is making sure the desk booking software itself is accessible to all.

 

One can think of accessibility for a desk booking software in two prominent ways:

  • Ensuring the software can be utilized by employees regardless of the work hierarchy and their location
  • Making sure all employees can use the desk booking software easily, including teaching the employees about how and when to use the software

Here’s an overview of both these measures.

 

1. Accessibility of a Desk Booking Software Through Its Features

desk booking system

The most convenient way to make sure the company’s desk booking software is accessible is by choosing a software that comes with easy-to-use, interactive features built into it.

 

a. Opt for a Cloud-Based Desk Booking Software

A cloud-based desk booking software allows employees to book desks from any location worldwide with a working internet connection. Since data is updated instantly on the cloud, one can also look at the number of available desks immediately, easing the hot-desking process. Moreover, cloud-based software reduces the storage space required to save desk booking data significantly, helping the company save costs.

 

b. Choose a Software That Allows Making Bookings Through a Mobile App

 To make remote bookings smoother, choose a desk booking software that comes with a designated mobile app. This eliminates the hassle of running traditional web pages on small mobile screens and makes navigation easy. 

Desk booking software mobile apps come with features like QR code scanning and RF-ID scanning, allowing you to book desks without touching a public screen—a necessity in COVID times.

 

c. Facilitate Decentralized Desk Booking Through Software

Many desk booking software works on centralized models wherein employees submit a request for booking a space, then request approval and desk allotment by the manager. This is a time-consuming process and increases the burden on managers to make decisions. Instead, using desk booking software with multiple booking access allows employees to book available desks without a manager’s approval, saving valuable time.

Bonus Read: IT manager's checklist for desk booking software 

 

2. Improving Accessibility by Training the Employees to Use Desk Booking Software Effectively

While facility managers are responsible for making an optimized, functional office space, ensuring that employees at all levels know how to use the tool is equally important. Hence, upon installing desk booking software in the office, facility managers can provide employees with sufficient training to use them. Here are a few tips for doing this.

 

a. Ensure All Employees Know the Benefits That Come With Using the New Software

office desk booking software 

Employees are more likely to explore new software when they know the tangible benefits associated with using it. For desk booking software, this involves the ability to book desks of their choice, saving the time lost while searching for a desk, and maintaining physical distancing to reduce health risks. Facility managers can schedule virtual meeting sessions with the employees and highlight the slew of benefits associated with using the software.

 

b. Schedule Timely Training Sessions

Employees at all levels are bound to have busy schedules. Hence, employers and facility managers need to actively prioritize getting employees to learn the desk booking software by scheduling training sessions for the employees that work well with their existing schedules.

 

c. Set Manageable Deadlines and Plan the Rollout Methods

Employees may require time to get acquainted with the new software and use them effectively. Organizing training sessions to cover the different aspects of using the desk booking software quickly gives employees time to understand how to use the software and the use cases. 

Team leaders and managers can also conduct sessions to discuss any employee concerns in using the new software.

 

d. Choose the Right Format for Training

desk booking software free

While choosing a training format, consider that the company will have both in-office and remote employees, who may require different training methods to learn the software. So, instead of lengthy presentations, you can go for a format that captures the necessary theoretical basics, along with a software demo or mock use sessions. 

Ensure that the training sessions are recorded and the training documents are distributed in advance to make the sessions valuable for all employees. In addition, employers can make the training interactive with processes with drills, etc., to boost learning retention.

 

When employees know how to use desk booking software, they can efficiently reserve desks of their choice while complying with the physical distancing measures. Managers, in turn, benefit from actionable and timely insights about desk usage, allowing them to manage facility resources effectively and deploy cleaning staff routinely to maintain office sanitization requirements.

With WorkInSync’s desk booking software, leverage solutions manifold, simplify the desk reservation process, and ensure employees’ safe return to offices. Our solution integrates with apps like Microsoft Teams, Slack, and Google Assistant, enabling smoother collaborations in a hybrid work environment. Get in touch with us to know more and schedule a demo today!

Subscribe to our blog to know more about the latest desk booking trends. 

Further Reading

Desk Booking Software

Desk Booking Software Checklist for IT Managers

Choosing a desk booking software takes time and effort. As an IT Manager, you would have quite a few . . .

October 14, 2021
Read More
Desk Booking Software

How to Choose A Desk Booking Software for Your Hybrid Workplace?

The ideal post-pandemic workplace means modern organizations must monitor occupancy and enforce capa . . .

September 24, 2021
Read More