Office building seen from outside

Meeting Rooms – The New Hard Currency of Companies

Felicia Berglund Workplace 1 Comment

- "Knock knock" – When is this room free?
- Why are there never any available meeting rooms?
- Excuse me, I have booked this room.

High demand on meeting rooms, (experienced) lack of meeting rooms and getting "kicked out" of, or have to kick out colleagues from booked rooms are commonplace at many workplaces. This is, among other things, because of the increase in information and meetings at todays companies. As a consequence, meeting rooms have become a kind of hard currency for many companies. We at Meetio are, if we may say so ourselves, quite sharp at meeting room management – e.g. by means of room usage statistics*. We know, it doesn't sound particularly sexy, but statistics is a powerful tool to gain insights about the actual usage of the spaces – something that often leads to smaller aha-experiences...

Many meeting rooms at an office seen from outside

How does room booking systems for meeting rooms usually work?

The most common way to schedule meeting rooms is via the calendar in the email client that one's organization is using (e.g. Exchange or Google Calendar). In addition, more and more companies realise the advantages of using so-called room managers such as Meetio Room, as a part of optimizing their room booking systems. Room managers are displays with a software that integrates with the calendar system. They are mounted outside the meeting rooms and helps to bridge the gap between the digital calendars and the physical space by showing the room's status. Moreover they facilitate situations where someone needs a room quickly e.g. for spontaneous meetings or phone calls.

The value of (meeting) time

For the sake of simplicity, we'll show an example that illustrates the value of a functioning room booking system:

  • Think of a company with 100 employees and 10 meeting rooms. The company has 80 hours room availability a day (10 rooms x 8 h working day).
  • The booking rate is 60% where every meeting is 1 hour long.
  • On average, 48 meetings are held every day (60% of 80 h = 48 h), that is 120 work hours of meetings a day (48 h x 2,5 participants/meeting (the average number of participants in Sweden)).

25% of all scheduled meetings are what we call spontaneous meetings, which means they are booked on the spot  either via a room manager or a phone app. Imagine a company that doesn't use any tools for scheduling spontaneous meetings and that those 25% who need a meeting room ad-hoc then would have to spend at least 5 minutes of their time to find a room  all of a sudden you've lost 5 minutes on 12 meetings (25% of 48 meetings = 12 meetings). In other words, that is 1 hour every day that's being spent on searching the office for meeting rooms. Translate those working hours into money and it escalates quickly...

Did you know?

  • 28% of all scheduled meeting rooms end up empty due to "no-shows" i.e. when the person who booked the room doesn't show up or forgot to cancel the booking. This means that one meeting room is booked 2,2 hours every day (28% of 8 h), while it's actually available. That's one of the reasons why so many people experience a lack of meeting rooms.
  • If the total booking rate of rooms is higher than 60%, it's experienced as difficult to get a meeting room.
  • If the total booking rate of rooms is higher than 80%, it's experienced as impossible to get a meeting room.
  • Companies have on average 1 meeting room per 10-15 employeed.
  • Our data shows that a typical Swedish meeting is 60 minutes long. Abroad, an average meeting is 90 minutes.
Meetio Stats on a Mac that's standing on a desk
Meetio Stats where you can see utilization rate of the rooms, number of participants, meeting lengths, no-shows etc.

As you can see, companies have a huge potential of development when it comes to meeting room management, where statistics can be a valuable tool. Our statistics module Meetio Stats is included in our Meetio Room licenses and provides you with everything you'd want to know about your meeting rooms.

This post is part of our series about smart workplaces.

*All numbers presented in the article are based on user data from hundreds of companies using our own statistics software Meetio Stats.

Curious of how your organization can utilize the meeting rooms smarter?


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Meetio Room that blinks showing the traffic light colors

About the Author

Felicia Berglund

Digital Marketing Manager at Meetio.

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