Office hoteling isn't the future - it's the present for most multi-state, multi-practice firms. In 2005 the ABA was already saying, "“Hoteling” has been a hot topic in the legal and accounting worlds for a few years now."
JLL's 2016 Law Firm Perspective Report says that the typical US firm has reduced office space by 22.2%, using hot desking, hoteling and remote work to drive real estate efficiency.
And that sucks. It's bad enough that office sizes have shrunk in recent years. This is even worse when at you have to travel all the way to the Poughkeepsie office where no one knows your name, nothing works the way you expect it to, and you get lost in that damn deco atrium every time you go to Starbucks.
Hoteling doesn't have to be that bad. In fact, one could run an office hoteling program like a high end hotel; with friction free check-ins like the W and all the meeting support you would expect from a Hilton.
Imagine you are a visiting attorney or CPA having the ultimate white glove experience...
...a day that goes exactly right.
This story will remain fiction unless you use AskCody. The only meeting room, resource management, or workplace productivity platform that delivers the same feature set as a high end hotel is AskCody. Here are brief descriptions of each of the features that make this story a real possibility (except having an on-time flight out of LaGuardia, of course).
The Wayfinder makes a better map than Disney
This AskCody app generates interactive maps for each floor of every office that include points of interest like bathrooms, coffee machines, and printers. These maps and other information can be included in the meeting invitation, or requested on an ad-hoc basis. Some large firms keep a persistent map up on a TV in the lobby to help navigate large amount of visitors just like a large hotel.
Today+ lets you check in without visiting reception
You can book meeting rooms, check in, or report problems with a meeting room or office directly from a mounted display, provided it is connected to your office network and that you are allowing it to show that information (all data can be kept confidential, too). This is the perfect way to replicate the W Hotel's ability to let you walk right into your hotel room.
ActivityView can share info with guests, or not
This lightweight add-in allows many types os screens to share meeting data, occupant data, or be set to complete confidentiality - showing only that a room is booked. It can also power large meeting room displays, like a big TV customized to show the meeting time.
AskCody's service layer automates a lot
The back-end of our software automated a lot of the activities mentioned in the story, unlike a high end hotel that would provide a concierge and staff to solve the same problems. Things that happen due to automation include notifying reception of arrivals, confirmed orders with internal and external service providers, printing nametags, cost accounting, and meeting reports. An external meeting API is also available if you want to share the data with your ERP.
Roomfinder works: room you need, when you need
The is the crown jewel of the AskCody suite - empowering users to find the resources they need quickly and easily. Roles can be set up to allow users to find and book a function room for 18 right from Outlook. Or you could set up a centralized model that requests rooms for a facilities planner to approve.
Users can search by floor, required amenity, AV equipment installed in the room, or by size. AskCody's business intelligence will match them with the optimal meeting room to fit their needs.
Lawyers, CPAs or their assistants can search for desks and meeting rooms across all office locations. The system will display the availability of the room before users even try booking. Your firm's business logic can also be implemented, reminding users to "book Alpha, Beta, and Charlie to hold 60 people," for instance.
Meeting+ gives you Hilton services with Amazon convenience
Last and most powerful is our services booking tool, Meeting+. This customizable program enables you to order in food and drink, AV and IT services, room stagings, and anything else you may need. This is fully customizable - you can even add one of those old VCRs strapped to a cart if you still have one rolling around.
Hospitality, IT, and reception all get accurate service tickets in seconds. Reports are automatically generated; all requests are catalogued in the AskCody back-end.
This is where AskCody is better than a five star hotel - it can provide all of the same white glove services of a Hilton with the ease of Amazon one-click ordering.
Confidentiality and discretion are important to us
Security and discretion are built into our app because they are a part of our culture. The AskCody software, infrastructure, and cloud hosting are all GDPR compliant (and have the ISAE 3000 audit to prove it).
Your information can be set to complete confidentiality or shared (by default or on a meeting by meeting basis). On one extreme, you could have a small touchpad on every hot desk sharing a the occupant's name and booking duration. On the other extreme, your data could be locked so high up in the cloud that only the person booking the meeting, your managing partner and the CIO could see it.
With luck, or preparation, you'll never need to book an emergency meeting for 20 in Poughkeepsie; if your career is long enough you will probably wind up hoteling somewhere. Ask for a five star hotel experience and if your office manager says they can't do that, tell them AskCody can.