Hot desking is when employees don’t have a fixed desk that they use every day. Instead, they have to arrive each morning and take any one of the desks that’s available. It can make the workplace a more flexible and proactive place. But it can be difficult to adapt to at first. If you have never worked in a hot desk environment before, here are the ten rules that you should stick to.
1. Understand the Arrangement
You’ll need to have a full understanding of the arrangement before you go ahead. There are many ways in which a hot desking arrangement can be managed. You want to make sure that you know all the rules in advance. Some offices have different areas for different kinds of work. Some offices that have a hot desking environment require some areas to be booked in advance. So, know what all the rules and protocols are before you actually start working under this arrangement.
2. Arrive Early
You should also make sure that you arrive early each and every morning. When you’re not sure which desk you will get, arriving late will probably mean you get the worst desk. By getting to the office early, you will beat the rush and make sure that you get the desk you want. This could help you perform better throughout the entire working day, so it’s very important. When hot desking, it can often turn into a race for those best desks, so don’t miss out.
3. Get the Setup Right Each Morning
You won’t be able to leave things on your desk from the day before when you’re hot desking. This is one of the most challenging things about it all. You need to tidy everything away at the end of the day and take it with you. So, you will have to give yourself time to set everything up in the morning when you arrive at your desk. This will eat into your working time if you don’t do it as soon as you arrive in the office.
4. Think About Your Phone
Your phone situation will have to be given some consideration as well. In most office, people are used to having a phone on their desk that they use all the time. They have their own phone number that people can use when they want to speak to them in particular. But this all changes when you are hot desking, and there’s a new phone that has to be used each day. This is something that you should sort out with your boss in advance.
5. Plan in Advance if You Need a Quiet Work Environment
Sometimes, you just need a little peace and quiet in the office. This is understandable, but it does present a problem when you are working in a hot desking environment. You should talk to your boss and make arrangements in advance if you need a quiet space to work in. There are many good things about hot desking, and greater interaction is one of them. But that’s not always a positive thing, so don’t be afraid to look at the alternative arrangements when necessary.
6. Always Clean Your Desk at the End of the Day
Cleanliness is very important in a hot desking environment. It’s up to you to make sure that you clean up at the end of the day when you’ve finished using the desk. Everyone has to be willing to clean up and tidy up after themselves. If this doesn’t happen, it will simply cause resentments in the office, and nobody really wants that. If you fail to clean up, then the person who uses the desk the next day will be the one who has to suffer. Be fair, and clean up before you go home.
7. Organise Your Work Better
Organising your work better is a good thing to do when you’re hot desking. You won’t be able to leave a pile of old papers on your desk. So, by taking this chance to organise, you will be able to adapt to hot desking much quicker. That’s important because you don’t want to be left behind, struggling to find ways to get your work done properly. It could make your work life a little easier to manage in the long-term too.
8. Learn to Block Out Distractions
There can be distractions when you are working near people who you don’t know. Sometimes, you might find yourself sitting next to someone who never stops talking. These kinds of people exist in all offices, and you just have to find a way of dealing with it. If you can block out distractions like this, then you will adapt to hot desking much quicker. It’s not easy, but it can be done. Sometimes, being honest with someone and asking them not to talk to you so much can help. And then make sure you don’t sit next to them again in future.
9. Minimise What You Carry with You
You don’t want to be carrying around large files, reference material and stacks of documents. When you’re moving from desk to desk, this can be a real headache. That’s why you should embrace the chance to embrace the cloud. When you store things like this in the cloud, you can access them whenever you want and wherever you are. This means that it doesn’t matter which desk you are using on any given day.
10. Take Advantage of the Social Aspect
There are some key advantages that could with hot desking. One of them is the chance you get to talk to new people and work alongside them. Many of these people will be strangers to you, even if you’ve been working in the same office for a long time. So, take advantage of this. You could learn new things from new people. And your work could improve by you embracing the chance to hear new perspectives that you have never encountered before. Make the best of the situation you find yourself in.
Hot-desking is becoming increasingly popular, and trends like this mean the workplace of the future will look very different. The way companies recruit will have to adapt, as candidates' expectations of companies are changing. For more information about how your company will have to rethink your hiring strategy in future, take a look at our eBook on the future of recruitment.