Hoteling: Designing for a mobile workforce

With the wide acceptance of smartphones, tablets and laptops, the need for a mobile workforce continues to shape the office environment. Today, hoteling has evolved to include an assortment of shared- and open-workspace concepts — benefiting not only businesses such as accounting and consulting firms whose workers continually travel, but also professionals in creative, knowledge-based fields like marketing or advertising.

And the focus has moved beyond merely cutting costs. When creating a hoteling plan, designers now make conscious decisions based on how the design will affect employee motivation, comfort, creativity and productivity.

But for hoteling to pay off, several things must fall into place. When companies commit to investing in the concept, and designers consider every detail from lighting to storage, hoteling can not only provide cost and space savings, but also increase productivity among workers and improve attraction and retention rates.

iBlog2Transforming a traditional office space for hoteling, however, is no easy task. Since the goal is to convert all possible areas into workspaces, designers must consider the big picture and re-evaluate every concept. That means thinking about the usefulness of every corner, every piece of furniture and every room, as each could have double or triple use.

It can’t be a place where people simply park and work. Hoteling spaces must have more uses than just a visiting office. Otherwise, it sits there empty much of the time. Another hoteling design challenge involves allowing employees to maintain “context and continuity” for ongoing work. The best hoteling situations include nearby storage, whether that be a rolling personal file cabinet kept in a central area or a locked drawer shared with other workers.

iblog3Designers today realize that when it comes to office hoteling, comfort and flexibility are key. The solution for a creative thinker should be a varied workplace with options — not a cubicle with four panels. In place of cubicles, coffee-shop style lounge areas can be used as workstations.

Designers and corporate executives who are looking for office hoteling inspiration need only to walk to the nearest corner. The local coffee shops represent a great example of how hoteling can work. Of course, another great way to build a perfect hoteling space is to talk to office design professionals who have years of experience and success in doing just that. At Innovative Office Solutions, our certified and experienced staff will help you with the ins and outs of how to make your office a fantastic workplace for your team. Get a free quote today or email us at info@ios-inc.com and let us help you.

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