This article came to me through BNET Alerts [A terrific resource – they provide a whole day’s worth of business-related reading (just what I need right?!), and are related to TechRepublic and ZDNET].

Tele-commuters, Beware!

The latest entry into the “next big thing” race may be something called “Hot-Desking” – where those folks who aren’t at the office 9-to-5, M-F, get to “share” a work space with X-number of others, at the same desk! Apparently designed for outside salespeople, but could be applied to any other part-timers , too.

Is Hot Desking a Cool Idea — or a Catastrophe?

The link is currently broken, but I have a feedback note on file at BNET – will update it as soon as it’s fixed. [Never did get a response from them, but the above link DOES work, now. 5-24-08]

My comment referred to Cat-bert (the evil HR person in Dilbert), but on reflection, I think the “Pointy-Haired Boss” would be more likely to come up with this hair-brained (as-it-were) scheme! (Sorry, HR people!)

It smacks of “bottom-line-only” thinking, where no one counts the non-direct-dollar cost of a process change/”improvement”.

In addition to the vital collaboration and connection costs mentioned in the article, I can see it taking a half-hour or more for each person to drag out their personal stash, adjust the chair and monitor, find all their files, and get down to business. Times that by 2 or even 3 times a day for the various users, add in the time it takes to put it all away at the end of your shift, and you have automatically generated a daily hour-an-a-half or more of totally non-productive time for each hot-desk!

Plus, really, who gets to monitor the “schedule”? Probably some already overworked, under-appreciated admin-type, who will bemoan this silly added task to her network of friends (and potential co-workers) (including the international thousands of Ask Liz Ryan members!)

Let’s nip this idea in the bud, any chance we get – !!