Academic journal article Manager

Managing the Modern Office

Academic journal article Manager

Managing the Modern Office

Article excerpt

12. Hot-Desking: New Solutions for the Contemporary Business Environment

Carl Evans and Warren Wright from the Business School, University of Worcester consider the growing popularity of hot-desking and highlight the benefits of the 'Fetch' - an innovative mobile storage unit that has been designed to meet the demands of managers who opt for a hot-desking environment.

Hot-desking, the system of staff using any available workstation, rather than being allocated a permanent desk, was heralded in the 1990s as an effective way to utilise office space and to offer flexibility to staff (Stocks, 1998). It was particularly relevant to sales staff who spend most of their working time out of the office, and therefore only need a desk on an occasional basis. However, it was not universally embraced by office workers (McCurry, 2001) and was subject to criticism, not least because it was felt to inhibit team cohesiveness (Millward et al, 2007), restrict communications and could lead to staff feeling alienated (Cainer, 2005).

Nonetheless, the prevailing adverse economic climate has resulted in organisations scrutinizing overheads and, in some instances, actively looking to downsize office space. As a consequence, hot-desking is once again back on the management agenda. Yet, modern offices are no longer the drab, soulless environments they once were. Now they're places where comfortable facilities and attractive furniture mix with a 'boutique-chic' ambience to create a more welcoming and dynamic work situation. In response, Rotadex systems, Birmingham! (www.rotadex.co.uk) have developed the 'Fetch - a mobile storage unit available in a range of vibrant colours, that is designed specifically for use with hot-desking environments.

One of the criticisms of hot-desking is the lack of personal space, where in addition to an in/out tray, beloved items of stationery, fluffy toys etc. can be gathered. Here, the 'Fetch' provides storage for personal effects, files (suspension and lever arch) and laptops. …

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