These days, terms like hot desking, hoteling and virtual office are thrown around a lot. There are a million and one things that these terms could mean but what’s the difference between them all?
Terms like ‘Hot Desking’ and ‘Hoteling’ sound a lot alike and are often used as interchangeable terms; which is not correct. All mean ‘short term’, ‘temporary’ or ‘rotating use’; but what each one is referring to is where they differ. So what’s the difference between hot desking and hoteling? It’s really simple: hot desking refers to desks while hoteling refers to office space.
Hot Desking is the constant rotating of where people work within your office space. This trend has been very popular in the past few years. Employers like the idea of having constantly changing space in an effort to share creative collaboration between employees. While often use in adjacency to, it does not mean sharing work space with others; four workers at one work table is not hot desking. That is open seating. Nor it is working wherever; working from a coffee shop is simply working out of office.
Hoteling is a term that gets used by professionals but can cause confusion to clients and customers. Hoteling is temporary office space for temporary workers. For example, a salesman for your company, who travels frequently, comes into the Chicago office and get some temporary space to work there. This space can be anything: desk, meeting room, conference room, presentation hall, etc. This term in particular causes confusion because a lot of people don’t think office reservation when they hear it. They think of actual hotels. Even searching online shows you a dizzying amount of different options.
Similar to hot desking is Desk Booking, and the term is fairly straight forward. Desk booking refers to the action of reserving a desk. It’s commonly seen in the terms of ‘Desk Booking Software‘. Other terms that are similar are Room Scheduling. Nearly identical meaning to desk booking, it encompasses any sort of room reservation; it’s a broader term than desk booking.
While not generally confused with the previously listed terms, Telecommuting plays into those words. Telecommuting is the practice of working from home but communicating with the office via phone or video call. It’s very similar to a Virtual Office. With a virtual office, there’s no real office space; everything is done digitally. Most of the above terms were created because of the telecommuting employees. Occasionally, people are needed in the office and can’t just call in. This is where hoteling comes in.
As you can see, there are some very big differences between all of these terms. It’s good to take them all into consideration when deciding which would be best to implement in your work place. There are many versions of software in place that do nearly all of the above mentioned tasks and they are easily available to anyone.
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