By David Sales, Product Manager, Kathea
The business world has changed, and so has the way in which people work in it. Office rental is charged per square metre, and space is therefore at a premium as organisations look towards optimising this space. As a result, many organisations have embarked on projects to implement more efficient workspaces, from hot desks to sophisticated meeting rooms and video conferencing solutions.
If workspaces are not effectively managed, however, organisations may end up catering for excess demand, meeting rooms may be booked and not used, and rooms with video conferencing capability may be booked out by users who do not need this technology, to name but a few examples. Workspace management has become critical in helping organisations to maximise the efficiency of offices, desks, meeting rooms, conferencing equipment and more, keeping employees productive and optimising costs.
While space is at a premium, and organisations are under increasing pressure to cut costs, the reality is that many organisations are not using their workspace effectively or efficiently. Paper-based booking systems and manual processes leave a lot of room for human error, and in many instances, large proportions of desk space remain unused at any given time, and there is often a high number of ‘no shows’ for booked meeting rooms. This not only results in an inaccurate view of space and demand, it is also not cost effective and can decrease employee productivity dramatically.
Incorporating effective integrated workspace management tools, including room and desk booking, can counteract these issues, helping organisations to maximise the potential of their real estate in order to reduce costs, improve efficiency and also to encourage a greener workplace. Sophisticated tools also allow for organisations to take advantage of advanced reporting capabilities, enabling more informed business and workspace decisions. Intelligent automated tools also convert room booking into a self-service task and factor in a variety of different resources, such as audiovisual and video conferencing equipment, as well as catering, which can all be ordered through a single system. This enhances the utilisation of meeting rooms by ensuring that staff can take full advantage of facilities without the problems of double-bookings and no-shows, and by making sure that all services are available as and when needed. Visitor management can also be incorporated to ensure optimal guest experience from arrival to departure.
When combined with digital signage technology, real-time information can be displayed outside meeting rooms for a visual overview of meetings taking place. Staff can check in and out of meeting rooms before and after meetings, and if nobody checks in the room can be released from the booking system, allowing others to use the room instead. This process also helps to highlight no-shows and allow organisations to take appropriate action.
Information taken from integrated workspace management tools can be brought into advanced reporting tools, enabling the close monitoring of space utilisation of meeting rooms and desks, tracking resource usage, monitoring user behaviour and managing hospitality costs. Advanced reporting generates real time data analysis and collates the information to provide statistics on planned bookings versus actual usage. Business intelligence solutions can harness this data to provide multi-dimensional reporting, enabling organisations to track trends and evaluate key business data across multiple site locations. Comparison of data such as occupancy and utilisation can be used to make intelligent decisions around real estate and workspace, by providing accurate, up to date information about actual usage statistics.
Integrated workspace management tools offer organisations a host of benefits, enabling organisations to enhance room, desk and space efficiency, maximise the utilisation of the workspace through accurate management and analysis of room, desk or space bookings, improve visitor management and seamlessly manage services such as catering, audio visual equipment and more. In an environment where space is money, and where staff rely on having the right space at the right time, workspace management is critical. Harnessing the power of integrated workspace technology, businesses can ensure that they maximise the use of their workspaces for optimised cost and optimised productivity.