Mar 4, 2021

Desk Management definitions you should know about

Two people chatting in the background, work desk is shown with a busy light attached, showing the desk as available,

Navigating the world of office desk management and flexible working can be difficult. Let us go through the most commonly used terminology within Desk Management and Desk Booking, so you can start your desk management journey without unnecessary hurdles.

Amazing features for a solid desk management solution

Desk management goes beyond simply booking a desk or a meeting room. It's about understanding your employees' needs. Convert this understanding into efficient office practices. Understanding and using all the possibilities a solid desk booking system and management system will open up for you as a hybrid workplace, will help both you and your employees to a more agile workplace. As mentioned before, we would like to help you understand all the different possibilities a desk booking software can do. Not only will it make it easier to manage desks and hybrid working but also help out with using space more efficiently and reduce real estate costs.

Why you should use Desk Booking Software

Ad-hoc seating

Ad-hoc seating refers to a form of flexible seating where vacant desks are taken upon arrival at the office. In this desk seating model, employees do not have a fixed workstation, nor do they book desks in advance. Ad-hoc seating is instead a form of “first come, first served” type of method. Ad-hoc seating works well in open workspaces where employees flow in and out but are less beneficial if there are more employees than desks. Only using ad-hoc seating can in these cases result in employees coming to the office without getting a desk. Read more about how to manage these problems here.

Bookable desks

Bookable desks refer to desks that can be booked, meaning that an employee can claim a desk as theirs for a period of time. This can be any time span, from an hour to several days. During this time, no one else can claim the desk. Bookable desks can be taken Ad-hoc (upon arrival and directly if a desk is free) or in advance (see Desk Hoteling). Within desk management, bookable desks can hence be part of both an Ad-hoc seating layout and a Desk Hoteling solution.

Desk Analytics

Desk Analytics refers to statistics produced regarding desk usage. One example is data that comes from presence sensors that measure seating time and duration. Desk analytics can also be produced from desk bookings and allows for measuring the number of bookings, duration, and usage rates. In summary, desk analytics is all the statistics that can be created around the usage of the desks at an office and is often included in a desk management solution.

Manage your workplace real estate with data-driven decisions

Understand how the office space is used and occupied, and what options are available, allowing for increased productivity and estate utilization in one central location. Keep track of real estate performance as it evolves. The application desk analytics allows business owners to understand how leased properties are used as well as improve efficiency through optimization. Read more about workplace analytics here.

Desk Booking

Desk booking refers to the process in which desks are booked/reserved in an office. Desk booking can be implemented either as a more ad-hoc desk check-in system, where desks are booked when someone is seated or by adopting a system where desks can be booked for days in advance. Desk booking can also be managed by using advanced permission and booking rules that govern who can book certain resources.

Desk Booking Software

Compared to the term Desk Booking, a desk booking software and solution refers to the complete system and desk booking software that is used to manage desk booking in your office. This type of desk booking solution often includes a desk booking software system in combination with plug-ins or sensors.

Desk booking app

Desk bookings can either be conducted by a mobile desk booking app, PC, desk check-in hardware, outlook plugins, etc.

Desk Check-in

Refers to desks that are automatically booked when someone is seated at a desk, or check-ins to a check-in system where made bookings need to be confirmed by the booker before the booking starts. This allows the system to release desks that are booked if no one took a seat during the booking time. This can be managed by Desk Sensors, which books the desk when a computer is plugged in, or by a desk presence sensor, that turns the desk red on the map.

Automate your desk management with automatic desk check-in

Desk Hoteling

Desk Hoteling refers to desks in an office space that is shared between employees. Desks are not assigned to a specific user but can be booked in advance via a booking system. Just like booking a hotel room, you book a desk at your office to use it, and sensors help you see what desks are available.

Desk Management

Desk Management solution refers to the complete system of software, sensors, and plugins that manages all Desk Types in your office. Fixed seats, bookable desks, and hot desks are managed by the software and the sensors provided by the desk management system.

Desk Reservation

Desk reservation refers to the same desk type as Desk Hoteling. Desks need to be booked in advance or upon arrival to enable usage.

Desk sharing

Desk sharing is an umbrella term for all Desk Types that are not Fixed Seating, where employees in one form or another share the desks in the office. If desk sharing is implemented, the employees in the office do not “own” their desks. This often means that there are fewer desks than employees. Desk booking solutions for desks are therefore often used to make sure that there are not too many employees in the office at the same time – and that everyone can acquire a seat if needed.

Desk Types

Desk Types is a descriptor of how a desk can be used and/or booked. There are multiple desk types. For example, a desk can be fixed (“owned” by an employee), bookable, or “first-come, first-served.” Read more about different desk types here.

Desk utilization

Another word for desk usage. Refers to the analysis of how often the desks are used compared to the time in which the available desks can be used. This is usually measured through sensor technology and booking statistics. Measuring and managing desks and their utilization can be helpful, especially if companies wish to reduce office space use, use space efficiently, save costs or enhance placement and equipment for the desks at the office. Read more about the benefits of measuring resource utilization here.

Fixed Seating

The traditional Desk Management model where all employees are assigned a permanent seat that they “own”. In this model, desks are not booked, and desks cannot be grabbed ad-hoc or in advance. Desk management solutions can however be used to view a colleague’s seating and enable wayfinding through the office. Read more about the benefits of colleague finding here.

Flexible seating

Flexible seating refers to Desk Types where people are not assigned fixed seats but can take a free seat in the office. Employees do not “own” desks, but sit where there is room, availability, and so on. Hot desking, Desk Hoteling, ad-hoc seating and Desk booking are all Desk Types that fall under this umbrella term.

Hot Desking

Hot Desking is at its core a system where employees take desks upon arrival at the office instead of booking in advance (as in Desk Hoteling) or having an assigned seat (As in Fixed Seating). Hot desking and Ad-hoc seating is similar regarding the “first come, first served” type of method. Hot Desks are never bookable, whereas Ad-hoc seats can be booked upon arrival or when seated. Read more about Hot Desking and why it's so beneficial.

The Future Office needs a desk booking software

The future-proof office will have a more comfortable working environment. Therefore desks usually stay empty for part of a day. Having a desk management solution that promotes warm desks and shared desks, will enable you to use only what you really need. As hot-desking and flexible work continues, the growing demand for desk management solutions grows explosively. By deploying technology in the office, employees will enjoy work and work more efficiently.