Improve Your Seating Chart in the Office This Year

June 15, 2022
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Improve Your Seating Chart in the Office This Year
Jacquelyn Wong
June 15, 2022

In today’s hybrid workplace, the physical office still plays a critical role in fostering employee connectivity and collaboration. In a 2022 survey, 85% of companies surveyed said they want employees in the office at least half the time moving forward.²

As employees return to the office, managers need to be aware that where employees sit can impact how they do professionally.⁵ An effective office seating chart can boost employee morale and collaboration, while cramped seating can be detrimental to office productivity. This article will discuss how you can improve your seating chart in the office.

What to Know About a Seating Chart Office

It’s no secret that employees are more efficient when they feel physically and mentally comfortable. Where employees sit in the office can either make them miserable or create an environment that helps them focus on their work and collaborate with other creative minds.⁶

There is no one-size-fits-all seating approach that works for every employee. Each individual likely has unique preferences for where to sit and what environment they like to work in.⁶ When considering an office seating chart, consider the following factors:

Spacing

Cramped seating can hurt employee morale, collaboration, and productivity, while too much space may make it difficult for employees to interact.⁷ The goal is to put coworkers close enough to talk with each other as needed and also give them enough space to work independently without distractions.

Temperature

Pleasing everyone with the thermostat settings may be nearly impossible, but you should be mindful of which employees tend to get warm or cold. For example, an employee who dislikes being cold shouldn't sit under a fan or air conditioning vent. Employee seating preferences can be difficult to manage in a large office, so some companies may benefit from allowing employees to choose their seats.

Lighting

A white office with bookshelves, rolling chairs, computers, desks, and large windows

Some employees may prefer sitting by a window, while others feel more comfortable in a corner with cool-toned lighting. Studies have shown that light can impact employee performance, so your office seating chart should put workers in optimal areas for their comfort.

Choosing the Right Neighbors

Conflicts may arise if co-workers end up disliking their desk neighbors.⁶ To simplify collaboration, employees should be seated next to people they can work with from their teams. You may also decide to place new hires next to experienced workers so they can learn from someone comfortable with the job.

Why Employee Comfort Matters

Today’s workplace is centered on meeting employee demands to maintain high morale and attract talent. The “Great Resignation” is a term used to describe the increased rate at which employees are willingly quitting their jobs and finding work elsewhere.⁴

As the labor force participation rate remains low, many companies are looking to hire new employees, which fuels the competition for hiring workers. A 2021 survey found that 23% of employees planned to quit in the coming year, and the desire for better working conditions was one of the highest-cited reasons for leaving a job.⁴

Office Seating Chart for Hybrid Work

Hybrid work has become the most highly sought-after form of work for the U.S. workforce. As employees split time between at-home and in-office work, the physical workspace has a new significance for teams. While traditional offices have focused on individual workstations and rigid schedules, hybrid offices need to facilitate in-person collaboration and in-office flexibility.¹

Despite its many advantages, implementing a hybrid schedule can be overwhelming. Managers may need to adjust employee schedules and office use to meet different needs, which can be difficult to facilitate without the right tools.

The solution? Hotel-style desk booking.

Desk booking is emerging as a cost-effective way to provide employees with flexibility while keeping up office productivity.³

Hotel-Desk Booking

Hoteling is an organized process of reserving a desk within an office. When employees are scheduled to come into the office, they can choose an open desk and reserve it using a hotel-desk booking system.

Advantages of Hotel-Desk Booking

Hotel desking is a simple way for companies to save money. Employees who work from home several days a week don’t need to be assigned a permanent desk that will go unused. Hotel desking allows companies to get away with fewer desks, which lets them cut down on unnecessary real estate.³ 

Flexibility is perhaps the greatest advantage of giving employees the option of choosing their desks and moving around. Workers can choose an area with their preferred lighting, airflow, and neighbors so they can feel comfortable coming into the office. This takes the stress off the manager to assign everyone to a desk they are satisfied with.

Hotel desking leads to happier employees who are more satisfied with their work. A hotel workspace feels less rigid than a typical office but more structured than at-home work. When employees choose where they sit daily, the change of scenery breaks up the monotony of office work and encourages employees to have a better work ethic.³

Implement Hotel Desking in Your Office with OfficeTogether

A group of employees using computers or on the phone in an office with closely spaced desks‍

At OfficeTogether, we know how critical it is to create a work environment that promotes productivity, collaboration, and comfort. An effective hotel desk seating chart could provide the flexibility employees need to enjoy their work and work efficiently. 

OfficeTogether is a hybrid management system that includes desk reservations. Employees can easily manage their time and workstation needs while teams can book blocks of desks and workstations, simplifying collaboration. Whether you work in a fixed seating chart office or an office that utilizes hotel-desk booking, click here to see how OfficeTogether can help you make the most of your office space.

Works Cited

  1. CBRE. “The Next Normal.” CBRE, 16 August 2021, https://www.cbre.com/insights/reports/the-next-normal-how-hybrid-work-will-transform-commercial-real-estate#implementation-strategies. Accessed 7 June 2022.
  2. CBRE. “Spring 2022 US Office Occupier Sentiment Survey.” CBRE, 25 April 2022, https://www.cbre.com/insights/reports/us-office-occupier-sentiment-survey-h1-2022. Accessed 6 June 2022.
  3. Entrepreneur. “A Hotel-Style Hybrid Work Environment May Be the Answer to the Post-Pandemic Office Question.” Entrepreneur, 3 January 2022, https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/403564. Accessed 7 June 2022.
  4. Fontinelle, Amy. “The Great Resignation.” Investopedia, 5 May 2022, https://www.investopedia.com/the-great-resignation-5199074. Accessed 7 June 2022.
  5. Forbes. “Why Your Post-Covid Desk Assignment Could Make Or Break Your Career.” Forbes, 22 June 2022, https://www.forbes.com/sites/josiecox/2021/06/22/where-you-sit-could-change-your-life-the-power-of-desk-assignments-in-a-post-covid-office/?sh=d09e1e12c65b. Accessed 7 June 2022.
  6. Indeed. “Office Seating Assignments: Moving, Rotating and More.” Indeed, 2022, https://www.indeed.com/hire/c/info/office-seating-assignments?hl=en&co=US. Accessed 7 June 2022.
  7. HBR. “Designing the Hybrid Office.” HBR, 2022, https://hbr.org/2021/03/designing-the-hybrid-office. Accessed 7 Jun 2022

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