Workspace trends have quite changed recently making it a little confusing for different businesses with one of the areas being the use of desks in office spaces, namely the hot desk and the dedicated desk.
Coworking in Nairobi is a growing trend. Coworking spaces offer people different working plans based on their needs.
In this article, we will look at two types of coworking space arrangements, namely: hot desk and dedicated desk, the differences, and how you can plug in.
To better understand these two arrangements, we can use the analogy of a movie theatre.
Have you been to a movie theatre in the recent past? When booking a ticket for a movie, you always have two options, to book in advance or book on the exact day.
When you book earlier you have the option to choose the seat you want and have it reserved but when you book on the d-day, high chances are you will get the seat that is available.
This sort of gives away the whole concept of dedicated and fixed desks.
The basic definition of hot desking is where you turn up at an office space full of desks, pick one and get to work.
In the modern workplace, a “desk” might be nothing of the sort – it could be a sofa, a cubicle, a breakfast bar, or a pod – but the name still applies.
A company might use hot desking for its employees, i.e. there are 20 employees and 20 desks, and people just fill them as and when needed.
But there’s also hot desking in places like coworking spaces, where people from different companies share the room with freelancers, entrepreneurs, and so on.
Our hot desking option helps make connections with Nairobi’s entrepreneurial community in a Club designed for your growth and productivity.
If you’re working from home and need a drop-in virtual office space to work from, this is a great option.
Or if you have a full-time office space, but just need something closer to home, or more connected to the entrepreneurial ecosystem – this is a winner.
It should be mentioned that not all hot desking arrangements work on a first-come, first-served basis.
There’s a middle-ground solution where you still have to book your place, but you can do it at the door, or a few hours in advance – this is often referred to as ‘desk hoteling’.
Other arrangements involve booking a slot in the coworking establishment in advance to prevent disappointment, however, you cannot choose a desk in advance.
Whether desk hoteling counts as hot desking is up for debate, but in its purest sense, it’s not the same thing.
Compared with the traditional fixed desk allocation system in a company (where each person has their own desk), hot desking benefits the company because, it doesn’t need to have unoccupied desks during sickness and annual leave, which means a smaller space can be agreed upon.
This leaves room for other hybrid arrangements, such as a workspace membership pass, or access to a hybrid office or what is known as the Flexi space.
For the employees, it gives them a change of scene, and the ability to sit next to people they are working with on projects.
This option gives a cafe vibe with great dedicated internet, a lounge area, and a balcony in case you need to unwind.
Joining this shared office space allows you to access important networks that are crucial for your business growth in Nairobi.
With more businesses asking their employees to work remotely – this is a way for companies to provide a flexible working option for their teams when working from home isn’t convenient.
The downside is that some people need or like their own desk, be that to store the paperwork and activity-based equipment they need, or just to personalize it with family photos and such.
However, in some instances, coworking spaces also offer storage options allowing you to store a few valuables and not worry about carrying them around
One potential downside is that a guest might turn up and all the spaces have been taken. That can be solved by booking a slot in the workspace (rather than the desk itself).
Also, some guests can abuse the system by leaving things on their desks and going off for prolonged periods, which can be frustrating for those looking for a space to work.
In the coworking context, hot desks are the norm, and guests are happy to have the flexibility and cost savings associated with the arrangement.
A dedicated desk is where the actual workstation is booked in advance and cannot be used by anyone else while it’s booked, even when it is not being used. A dedicated desk can be for as long as needed but generally, this extends to a few days or weeks.
The main advantage of this arrangement is that the desk is yours for the duration of the booking.
Nobody can take it while you’re out for lunch and you can even personalize it to a minor degree. Coworking spaces will usually provide lockers for you to store things overnight, too.
It also costs less than a private office, but still has some of advantages.
On the downside, this kind of workspace will always cost more than an equivalent time used with hot desk membership in a shared office.
To make it worth its cost, you need to be sure you’re going to use it, as it’s probably not worth booking a slot for two days if you’re only going to use it for just three hours.
Cost: Dedicated desks depends on company budgets. Look at what your usage of the coworking space would be to select the most cost-effective option while hot desking is more cost-effective on a per-hour basis (coworking usually allows a certain number of days per month)
Perks: In most cases, getting a dedicated desk comes with more perks, i.e more credits for meeting rooms, unlimited access to the space, and so on while the hot desking option comes with a fair share of perks like fewer hours meeting room credits etc.
Personal space: Dedicated desks, are usually allow you to sit in your own corner of shared office space. Tends to be more quiet and private. You can usually choose a specific desk dependent on your needs. On the other hand, the hot desking area of a shared office is not great for privacy but wonderful for networking
Collaboration: Dedicated workspaces only allow collaboration in common areas of the office while the Hot desking area is a great option for opportunities to collaborate with other hot desk users.
While both arrangements have their own fair share of pros and cons, both provide excellent work options while helping businesses and remote workers save costs.
If you’re working from home and need a drop-in virtual office space to work from, this is a great option. Or if you have a full-time office space, but just need something closer to home, or more connected to the entrepreneurial ecosystem – this is a winner.
If your business is settled and works on set schedules, and you need to just get down to hard work with the minimum of distraction, then a dedicated desk could be ideal for you
Ultimately, there’s no right or wrong type of arrangement. As a member of Nairobi Garage, you get more than an office space, you get the benefit of our value-added services giving your business the edge to stay ahead.
While we understand it can get a little bit complicated, you don’t have to worry, reach out to us and let us help you make the right decision to spur your business growth.
Reach out to our team at Join@nairobigarage.com or even better book a tour of our space.