The workplace culture is evolving. At a time when remote working is the new normal and companies are adopting the hybrid workplace model, organisations face the challenge of enabling flexible meetings now more than ever.
With the hybrid work model, only a portion of employees visits the office on particular days, while the rest of them work remotely. So, does that mean you don’t need meeting rooms anymore? Well, that is not so true. With the pandemic, meetings have now become even more important to business operations. As offices evolve, hybrid meetings help ensure collaboration and share ideas.
However, it does not come without its own set of challenges. The most common problems faced with meeting room management are as follows.
- Timely availability of meeting rooms
- Equal participation of virtual and in-office attendees
- Complicated booking process
- Equipment and technology
So, as a facility manager, you need to ensure that meeting rooms are utilised effectively. At first glance, it might seem challenging, but these few tips can help in better management.
- Meeting room bookings system
People aren’t in the office anymore, and there are fewer opportunities for spontaneous communication. Though virtual meetings have become a big part of business operations, most organisations are keen on returning to face-to-face meetings. So, it becomes essential to manage your meeting rooms more efficiently. An automated meeting room booking system might just be what you need.
A centralised booking process allows you to reserve rooms and lets you check the availability of conference rooms in real-time. It offers you the following benefits-
- Allows your employees to plan their meeting schedules and reserve a space accordingly.
- Gives facilities team real-time insight into the workplace analytics
- Eliminates the issue of multiple bookings
- Allows facility managers to effectively utilise the available space and coordinate cleaning schedules
Moreover, ensuring a straightforward booking system for your in-office employees will go a long way. For instance, any employee with access to the system can book an available room and receive confirmation. Then, another employee can look up this information and book a different room, thus, avoiding conflict and overlapping schedules.
- Upgrade your technology
Conducting hybrid meetings in the new workspace scenario can get quite tricky. You need more than just appropriate meeting room space. To connect the in-office personnel with remote employees, you may need to upgrade your meetings rooms with better technology.
For starters, get all your employees to use the same kind of available technology. Install quality microphones that cancel background noise and high-resolution cameras to ensure the remote attendees don’t miss out on any conversation.
For the in-office employees, it could mean a central video screen and screen sharing technology. So that every attendee has an equal opportunity to participate and engage in the discussion.
Further, with a meeting room booking system, employees can book the conference rooms based on the technology available. Thus, ensuring smooth work.
- Focus on space management
Optimum space management is often a subject of concern for many facility managers. Then, as you open up with a hybrid workspace model, having specific meeting rooms for different purposes and occupancy can be a game-changer.
Often, employees might book a big room for fewer people simply because it has the technical equipment they need. This is where space goes unutilized. Then, it becomes essential to not only see if a room is occupied but how it is occupied. So, your aim should be to redesign rooms with varying occupancy levels for better space management.
Consider deploying physical barriers to divide big meeting rooms into smaller spaces. Or use room booking software to manage the use of meeting space. The data insights can inform about the availability of rooms during the day, if their size matches their occupancy, or if there are any reserved but unused rooms. In a hybrid workspace, such insights can be crucial to enhance employees’ experience.
- Plan meeting schedules
How far back do your employees book a room? Probably weeks before the actual meeting? It turns out rooms reserved a while in advance have an increased probability of no-shows than rooms booked minutes before the meeting. Why? Because situations can change over a few weeks. You cannot be sure of how many attendees are present. Or how many are present in-office or working remotely.
Carefully planned meetings will ensure you make the most of your time and the space. By reserving a meeting room close to time, you can book a suitable space as per your immediate needs.
Moreover, a meeting room software will automatically inform the concerned employees of meeting rescheduling, allowing added convenience.
- Ensure meeting room sanitization
The post-pandemic era has increased concerns for safety and cleanliness. To ensure a healthy environment, you need to put a proper cleaning schedule in place. When meeting rooms are used several times a day, it becomes imperative to make them safe and clean for everyone.
You can make good use of the meeting room booking software to scan the rooms in use and coordinate cleaning schedules accordingly. This will also ensure proper allocation of the cleaning team as well. After every meeting, sanitise high contact surfaces with disinfectants and guarantee secure working space for your employees.
No matter the situation, regular meetings are vital for collective decision-making and strong workplace culture. As you adapt your working model with the times, how you approach and coordinate meetings should change too. With appropriate meeting room booking software like WorkInSync, you can indeed facilitate smooth meeting room management. Book a free demo today!