2023's Definitive Guide to Office Seating Software

Office seating software allows users to plan their day at the office before coming to the office through interactive floorplans.

There was a time when work occurred at a desk, and only at a desk - a particular desk. Now, in 2023, that workplace norm is relegated to the history books for a large number of companies.

With the advent of remote and hybrid work: work happens somewhere between ‘anywhere’ and ‘everywhere’.

As a response to the seismic change the pandemic ushered in, a majority of large companies have reduced their office space in the last 3 years, as workers have been equipped to work from home or anywhere.

Hybrid working has sprung forward as the clear winner as far as workplace policies go, with companies deciding on some unique mixture of in-office and remote working for employees.

Now that employees no longer have a desk to themselves, it becomes crucial that companies have some visibility and control over how the office is being utilized. For that a company needs office seating software.

Office seating software–also known as desk booking or hot desking software–allows those who plan to come into the office to access it in accordance with a company’s hybrid policies.

Office seating software–also known as desk booking or hot desking software–allows those who plan to come into the office to access it in accordance with a company’s hybrid policies.

But what exactly is office seating software, and is it worth investing in?

What Is Office Seating Software?

Office seating software is a program that lets employees book their desk at the office.

Some programs are designed specifically for ‘hot desking’ where an available desk is assigned when an employee arrives at the office.

Other software enable pre-bookings of desks. This is desk hoteling. Staff can access the seating software remotely and book a desk ahead of time.

More advanced office seating software go even further, addressing other office space needs and can be termed office space management software. These include booking meeting rooms, visitor management, or running health screeners.

Zynq: A Popular Office Seating Software

Why Use Office Seating Software?

Hot desking and desk hoteling have both been popular among companies for years - well before the pandemic forced more companies to consider the solution.

They were typically used by employees who regularly worked off-site. Think sales teams or on-the-road consultants. Giving them a fixed desk was a waste of space.

But with the majority of corporations embracing hybrid working, the purpose of office seating software is changing. The vast majority of workers who are able to work remotely are also able to work from any desk.

Instead of a handful of staff not needing fixed desks, almost no one does.

So instead of a handful of employees using office seating software, it will now need company-wide adoption to ensure everyone who wants to, or needs to, come to the office is able to find a space to work.

This system reduces overheads by slashing the square footage companies need, potentially saving millions every year in real-estate costs.

At the same time, it encourages remote workers back to the office.

Software in this category have certainly evolved during the pandemic, becoming increasingly sophisticated and feature-rich. Many of these features are absolutely essential to running a company with a hybrid workplace policy. Excel sheets will not cut it.

Below we walk you through important features to look out for when selecting a software. Depending on the nature of your company’s hybrid work policy, you may need all or only some of these below features.

Software Features

Interactive Floorplans

Some software of times past would only give users the option to book a desk. That was it. Maybe if they were lucky, they could choose which desk.

Products have dramatically improved since then. Fully customizable floorplan features now show users exactly which desks are booked and which are available. More advanced software even shares who is sitting where.

This can help people decide not just where they want to work, but who they want to work with. It also lets you know who is in the office at any time.

Especially with safety still a concern, some appreciate the option to book a desk a bit away from crowded areas. Many will appreciate the choice a floorplan gives them, including:

  • Do I want to work by a window, or away from one?
  • How close do I want to be to the breakroom?
  • Do I want to work in a loud, lively area of the office, or a quieter corner?

Some software even provide a live floorplan view. It shows which desks are booked and available at any given moment. This level of transparency can ease the anxiety of returning to the office for many.

Collaboration Tools

With the availability of remote work and hybrid working, it can be difficult to bring people into the office. They know it’s optional, so why would they?

The best office seating software find ways to motivate people to come back to the office. It encourages in-person collaboration and meet-ups for events.

For example, Zynq’s Buddy Sync feature notifies users when a close colleague has booked time in the office, and can synchronize their office schedules.

Choosing where to sit can also lead to departments overlapping where they normally wouldn't. This organically creates conversations that can lead to effective cross-department collaboration.

Neighborhoods and Desk Restrictions

Office seating software can be completely customizable. The level of choice and freedom staff have regarding when they come in and where they sit is up to you.

Some companies may allow workers to choose from any seat in the office with the vision of encouraging cross-departmental collaboration and productive intra-company connections. Other companies may prefer to suggest or enforce department neighborhoods.

Office seating software caters to all these models, depending on how you’d like your office to function.

Single Sign-in (SSO)

Accessibility and ease is key to a friction free office seating software rollout. It also helps the whole office to run more smoothly.

Good applications remove the need to create additional accounts and simply allows users to sign in to the software using a platform they are familiar with: Microsoft, Azure and G-Suite.

Single sign-ins make a world of difference when it comes to user uptake.

Integrations and APIs

This integration extends to other areas. Existing virtual collaboration software such as Microsoft Teams and Slack can be combined with office seating software to allow for faster desk and room bookings, for example.

Even more complex HRIS software and RFID security systems can also be integrated for even more seamless set up.

Office seating software with API documentation can extend the versatility of the platform to virtually any use case specific to a company.

People appreciate the ability to choose who they work next to. They may want to book near a certain person for social reasons or to collaborate on a project.

As useful as a live floorplan may be, it can be difficult to find who you’re looking for in a large company.

A feature to be able to look up colleagues and their in-office schedules and seating can help you plan out yours. Good hot desking software make this easy and seamless.

Administrative Controls

In most companies, office administrators need to be able to see and control who is accessing the office and how. Should the need arise, bookings can be overridden by admins.

Office seating applications empower office admins with back-end controls to create an ideal office layout on a daily, weekly or monthly basis to align with company policies or priorities.

Usage Insights and Analytics

Huge sums of data are collected by flexible working software. When desks are booked, when they are used, what meeting rooms are most popular, and even at what time of day. How can that be used?

The software can help you find under and overused resources and spaces in your office. Tracking exactly how many desks are used every day, and for how long, shows you how many you need.

The software can help you find under and overused resources and spaces in your office.

For example, certain areas of the office that were necessary three years ago might be less important now. Scores of cubicles may need to be replaced with open floorplan desk layouts that are becoming increasingly popular among hybrid companies.

Such decisions can be data-driven when a company uses their hot deksing software data.

Metrics can even help predict the future of your office space. With hybrid policies still new, it is important to start building a database as soon as possible.

Metrics can even help predict the future of your office space. With hybrid policies still new, it is important to start building a database as soon as possible.

This database can then inform future space planning and real estate decisions. The data shows you what resources are actually required for your office to run smoothly.

Your analytics may show that you can reduce your office space. With many working from home some of the time, your office may not need to be the size it once did. This concrete information helps businesses save on costs in the long run, only investing in what they need.

Don’t make guesstimates based on what you’ve observed. Use flexible working software to look at the exact number of desks and meeting rooms your office actually needs. If the number is lower than your current capacity, you may be able to downsize.

Alternatively, you can keep the same space and keep growing while adjusting hot desking policies to always remain within the limits of your office space.

Lots of software offers a free demo that shows you exactly how these analytics work before you invest in the product.

Floorplan Customization

Floorplan customization allows management to easily turn on and off desk access. This can be used for a variety of purposes, but most prevalent at the moment is to enforce social distancing.

Some offices need to consider government-imposed social distancing in their offices. Office seating software helps by allowing you to make certain desks unavailable.

The strictest companies could use this to block out every other desk. Others may prefer to block off desks next to crowded walkways for the time being.

Closing access to certain desks also has other uses. For example, blocking off desks near a client meeting for the afternoon could keep the area quiet.

However you use it, it’s an incredibly powerful tool.

Health Screeners

Many offices are running health checks, either when someone arrives at the office or beforehand. This can be to comply with local government ordinances or simply to keep the office as hygienic as possible. Health screening questions can be integrated into office seating software.

Before booking a desk remotely, the software can ask the user to fill out a survey about any symptoms they are experiencing. The software sends the results back to management. Then, the company decides who is allowed to work in the office.

Desk Types

These software give staff a choice of desks, depending on what’s available at an office. It also identifies which types of desks are most popular. This can help you decide which furniture solutions to invest in from now on.

But flexible seating provides even more choice than which desk type workers choose.

Rather than having a fixed desk, desk hoteling allows people to choose where they work in the office. This isn’t just limited to bookable desks. Some people may prefer to work in more open, agile  collaborative working spaces than at a desk.

Hybrid working options give them this freedom. And software that integrates office check-in allows you to track office space usage even if someone doesn’t book a desk.

Mobile Apps

Office seating software can run on the internet or a company intranet. More advanced solutions offer apps to their clients.

These iOS and Android apps have become substantially more sophisticated overtime, allowing users to utilize every feature of a hot desking software right on their personal or work mobile device.

Apps are particularly more useful when the software is utilized by the entire company. Desks can be booked on the go and check-ins can occur seamlessly to get an end-to-end picture of desk utilization at a company.

Meeting Rooms

Just as people like to know they have a desk waiting for them the next day, people feel more comfortable if the guesswork is taken out of having an accessible meeting room when it’s needed.

Some office seating software also allow for meeting room bookings. That way, those needing a meeting room can relax, knowing there is a space available somewhere in the office.

This also provides useful information about how staff use meeting rooms.

People prefer to meet in person than online. So despite emptier offices, meeting room usage is almost at the same level as before the pandemic. Using this software can help companies determine whether they need to invest in more meeting space, or rooms of different sizes.


With many people attending their company offices for the first time because they were hired during the pandemic, wayfinding is more critical than ever.

Office seating software helps users orient themselves on the office floorplan so they can quickly get familiarized with the layout of the office and find where they are sitting.

Plus, live floorplans can help staff and visitors alike navigate the office.

Visitors and External Users

Software often incorporate add-on features to bring in guests to your office that will be visiting as a one-off or for a prolonged period of time, without being direct employees of the company.

They check in to the office the same way as staff do, and can work wherever you allow. The check-in process can be the same or different for these categories of external users.

Take Control with Office Seating Software

Take control of your office space. Rather than muddling through manual desk booking policies and office check-ins, talk to us at Zynq.

Zynq's all-in-one office seating software is easy to use, easy to change, and includes all the aforementioned features. Sign up for a demo of Zynq’s office seating software today. Whether you need hot desking software, desk hoteling, or full office management, we've got you covered. See how much it reassures employees about their return to the office, while keeping you informed.

Share this article: Link copied to clipboard!