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13 Hot Desking Equipment Ideas for Your Hybrid Workplace

With return-to-office dates constantly changing thanks to continued COVID concerns, management is reinventing the office to better meet public health guidance and employee demands. Enter hot desking.

What is hot desking? Simply put, hot desking is the term for non-dedicated workspaces; employees have a different desk or space each time they visit the office. As a result, smart office technology options are morphing into essentials; this makes smart office features such as space utilization software and collaboration tools key to the success of a hot desking initiative. Read on to learn more about hot desking solutions for a hybrid office and how electronic lockers can help with the transition. 

Why Offer a Hybrid Office

As Brent Hyder, President and Chief People Officer of Salesforce, explains1: “The pandemic is not over. It’s moving into an endemic. The ‘return-to-office’ dates, for me, are irrelevant. I don’t understand them. We need to find ways to meet safely.”

From using hot desk booking software to allowing coworking and flexible seating, many companies are finding ways to offer or promote flexibility in corporate office design. Hybrid work is emerging as the frontrunner for the future of work as there is a pressing need for collaboration, community, creativity, and culture inside corporate America.

13 Best Hot Desking Ideas

As employees split their time between working at home and in the office, hot desking equipment becomes paramount. If you are an employer looking to allow hot desking or other hybrid work arrangements, here are 13 must-have pieces of hot desking equipment to update your office environment.

#1 Desk & Workspace Scheduling Software and Apps

Hot desking software is essential to manage who is in the office and when. This hot desking solution allows employees to reserve a desk as well as locate who else is in the office. Many of the desk booking platforms offer integration with other enterprise software, such as Google Workplace, Microsoft Exchange/Outlook, Jira, Slack, and/or Microsoft Teams.

#2 Conference Room Scheduling

By the same token, hot desk employees gathering for a productive in-person meeting need to ensure there’s adequate space to hold their meeting. Having the ability to reserve a meeting room ahead of time will help minimize scheduling conflicts.

#3 Smart Lockers

Another type of innovative office technology is a smart electronic locker. Without a permanently assigned desk or cubicle, there’s a need for a method to safely and securely transfer documents, badges, laptops, and other physical resources. By leveraging an indoor parcel locker system, employees can retrieve personal belongings or other deliveries within 10 seconds by entering a unique access code or scanning a barcode from their mobile phone. 

“Everyone wants to control their personal effects,” explains Jeffrey Gay, an architect, and designer for MOI2. “With the open office colliding with the hybrid workplace, you don’t always know who is in the space. You want to know that your things are safely locked away.” Learn more about the benefits of smart lockers for enterprises here.

#4 Flexible Furniture

With a hot desking solution comes a new world of rolling desks, filing cabinets, and chairs. Any flexible furniture must ideally meet ergonomic needs and provide sit to stand options. A flexible workplace with these accommodations and pieces of furniture can create an easier transition to in-office working from remote work for its employees.

#5 IT & Technology Infrastructure

Of course, every office needs a fast Wi-Fi connection. However, employees also need easily accessible power outlets, dongles, and docking stations as they untether from a fixed desk or workspace to a hot desk; this can also help employers provide a more flexible workspace configuration.

#6 Space Utilization Data

Executives are also demanding good space utilization data – such as peak vacancies, room utilization, and unused work areas – to make informed decisions about a shared workspace. IoT sensor data that integrates with other software platforms is critical. Having access to real-time data takes away the need for any guesswork, and provides facility management teams with a constantly updated source of accurate information.

#7 Sanitation Centers

Smart offices today are creating a sanitation center upon entry – either with a hand-washing sink or sanitation area. Desks are also spaced farther apart to reduce the risk of disease transmission.

#8 Desk Hardware

Even if a hot desker brings in or accesses their own computer, they still expect an efficient shared workspace with a good monitor, mouse, and keyboard. They might also need headphones, lighting, webcams, and speakers.

#9 Upgraded Video Monitors

The standard single video conferencing monitor for all remote workers joining a meeting is a prime example of a model that needs to change. Experts suggest devoting one monitor per virtual attendee so that each video image is given the same importance and respect as the employees physically in the room3. Adding microphones, lighting, and changing the typical conference room set-up allows virtual meeting attendees to collaborate better. Microsoft, for instance, is reconfiguring its conference rooms and improving the employee experience for hybrid workers by installing eye-level cameras and huge wall screens.

#10 Phone Booths

When employees are in the office, they need the ability to have private and quiet conversations – ideally away from their assigned desk and without disturbing others. “Acoustics is going to become the next new buzzword,” states Holly Williamson, Regional Design Lead at architectural firm Nelson Worldwide4. Crowe UK, for example, designed a new hybrid office that not only features a flexible office space but phone booths as well.

#11 Create “Hang Out” Space

When Deloitte moved into their clean and ‘green’ futuristic new building, the Edge, in Amsterdam, they implemented a new hot-desking initiative. According to Ron Bakker, Partner of PLP Architecture, “a quarter of this building is not allocated desk space, it’s a place to meet”5. Creating spaces with flexible seating arrangements can help foster connection and collaboration between employees.

#12 Plants

Easy to overlook, natural elements such as plants bring the outdoors in, creating a calm and creative work environment.

#13 Storage & Coat Racks

Again, without dedicated workspaces, employees tend to store all sorts of personal belongings – coats, jackets, gym bags – under their desks or on the back of their chairs. To keep things clean and organized in your office space, consider dedicating closet space or setting up coat racks for hot deskers to store as soon as they get to the office.

The workplace is shifting towards a hot desk/hybrid work model. To be successful, it requires implementing new hardware, software, and practices that improve the employee experience and boost productivity while also promoting employee safety.

To discover how an office parcel locker can help facilitate a hot desking model for your workspace, contact a Parcel Pending by Quadient representative today!


  1. Cutter, Chip. The Wall Street Journal. Companies Face a Dilemma: Delay Office Reopenings Again, or Take a New Approach?. (2021, November 21). https://www.wsj.com/articles/companies-face-a-dilemma-delay-office-reopenings-again-or-take-a-new-approach-11637490601.
  2. Proctor, Carolyn M. Washington Business Journal. Post-Covid offices are bringing in welcome design changes. (2021, July 16). https://www.bizjournals.com/washington/news/2021/07/16/post-covid-office-design-changes.html.
  3. Keane, Jim & Heiser, Todd. Harvard Business Review. 4 Strategies for Building a Hybrid Workplace that Works. (2021, July 22). https://hbr.org/2021/07/4-strategies-for-building-a-hybrid-workplace-that-works.
  4. TechTarget. Hybrid office design will drive tech purchasing. (2021, October 1). https://www.techtarget.com/searchunifiedcommunications/news/252507608/Hybrid-office-design-will-drive-tech-purchasing.
  5. Density. Hot desking for the hybrid workplace. (2021, September 8). https://www.density.io/blog/hot-desking-for-the-hybrid-workplace.