In an agile workplace, no two days—heck, no two hours—look the same. Employees should have access to the workplace resources they need to be productive—whether they’re cranking out focused work in a quiet space, brainstorming over lunch in the kitchen, or gathering for a team meeting in the afternoon.
A key resource is meeting rooms. A seamless meeting room reservation system allows employees to book a room for their meetings ahead of time, adding structure to a flexible workplace. You can make the most out of your workplace—and your employees’ time—with a room reservation management system. Keep reading to learn more about how to select and implement one in your workplace.
What is a meeting room reservation system?
An online room reservation system is a centralized tool for booking meeting rooms. It streamlines the room booking process and helps employees avoid the frustration that comes when more than one group needs a room at the same time. The result? An organized workplace and more productive employees.
In practice, your reservation system should sync with other workplace technologies and be seamless. Each meeting room should have a display screen that’s connected to the tool, showing a calendar of who’s got it reserved and when. A good online room reservation tool will not only allow employees to reserve a room from the scheduling screen, but also from their computers and mobile devices.
Features to look out for in the best meeting room reservation system
Your conference room reservation process should be as flexible as your workplace. That means when you’re shopping around for the right system, you should consider features that make it easy to book, reschedule, and cancel meetings.
Also, make sure your system is simple to adopt. The last thing you want to do is add extra work to your employees’ already-full plates! Keep employee needs top-of-mind as you assess these six features:
- Space usage analytics – Are your employees typically booking meetings in advance, or calling ad hoc gatherings? How many people are in a typical meeting? How often are meetings kept or canceled? This data can inform your working policies and office decisions. For instance, if your rooms are underutilized, you may want to convert some meeting rooms into quiet spaces. If your rooms are overbooked, you may want to convert more spaces to meeting rooms or encourage more hybrid working.
- Easy-to-use functionality – You want your system to be as simple to use as possible; remember, it should enhance employee experience, not add stress to it. Create a seamless experience with features that allow employees to check into the room to start the meeting, end it early to free up booking slots, and book or change meetings from their devices on the go.
- Schedule displays – Look into your system’s display capabilities. Meeting room screens should be easy to read and intuitive to understand. For instance, the conference room screen could have colored indicators to indicate status: red for in use, green for available. It should also display a schedule of upcoming meetings so bookers can figure out where their meeting might fit in.
- Privacy controls – Of course, some meetings are confidential, and you might not want all of your details displayed on-screen for all to see. Look for a system that has customizable privacy settings so that employees can book meetings safely.
- Slack notifications – Your online room reservation tool should also sync up with your workplace communications platforms so that all calendars are in one place and updated in real-time. Look for integrations with Slack, Microsoft, Skype—whatever your team uses to organize and align—to receive check-in, cancellation, and booking notifications.
- Admin alerts If a room ever goes offline, you’ll want to know. Look for admin alert features so that users can stay in the know about their meeting room and avoid confusion down the line.
Keep an eye out for features that work with your workplace. At the end of the day, the best room reservation program is one that you don’t even notice because it flows so smoothly with daily operations.
Upgrade your workplace
As hybrid, agile, and flexible workspaces become more common, it might feel difficult to create a space that accommodates schedules and working styles. But with the right workplace technology, you can manage your space, optimize employees’ time, and create a strong culture of collaboration.