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Allan MørchJan 10, 202210 min read

Maximizing Meeting Productivity: 3 Easy Steps to Stop Wasting Time

Stop wasting time in meetings -

use these easy steps to win back lost productivity:

Are meetings a waste of time? Learn why a one-hour meeting is never just a one-hour meeting and get three easy steps to optimize time spent on meetings in your organization.

What you will get in this blog:

 Are you not a fan of lengthy blog posts? No worries.  This article is based on the E-BOOK:


wast less time on meeting management


Are meetings a waste time in your company?

Meetings are a necessary part of the business. You meet to share ideas, make some progress, gain some results, move forward, collaborate, learn, improve, grow. This is a reason that people end up in a ton of meetings every week in a professional context. It is simply the way modern organizations work these days. Therefore, meetings are an integral part of business life.

But, what is not necessary is the amount of time spent arranging these meetings. Stop for a while and just think  about how much time you spend on planning a single meeting with, for example, 4 people. You need a room with a whiteboard and a presentation screen, and you need to book some beverages for the meetup as well.

Meeting room bookings can be a minefield filled with anarchy - just ask your poor receptionist or office manager! For organizations with a lot of meetings, meeting rooms, and especially meeting rooms located across locations and time zones, finding an available room and booking associated services can be a nightmare for employees and a real productivity killer.

Statistics show us that 40 percent of workers in large organizations waste up to 30 minutes a day searching for space to collaborate, and business professionals spend 4.75 hours of a typical workweek arranging an average of 15 meetings per week.


Why is meeting management such a problem?

People forget to look at the calendar. They see that the room’s empty, so they think it is free and once inside, it can be difficult for anyone else to work out who booked the room without interruption. Interruptions kill productivity and waste time. Without a clear overview of today’s meetings, you waste space and meeting room resources. And without an integrated meeting room booking tool into your company’s productivity infrastructure like Microsoft Exchange or Office 365 you waste a lot of time and resources on cumbersome processes and context switch between 3rd party applications.

For many companies, a flexible work environment with the right management tools is key to their future success. Anything that helps people to book and manage desks, huddle rooms, meeting pods, or conference rooms effectively, and with a constant overview could save thousands of dollars per day and enhance productivity instantly harmonizing the needs of both individuals and organizations. The Activity-Based Workplace Model  flips the traditional office model by making the open work stations the quiet space (as in a library) and the enclosed spaces become the places for conversation as well as privacy.

It allows not only flexibility in working style, but affords the Corporate Real Estate executive flexibility in their real estate strategy with a workplace that allows for contraction and expansion in demand and headcount over time


A one-hour meeting is not a one-hour meeting

At a company meeting, organizers are tasked with getting a group of busy people together at the same time and place. This may involve communicating back and forth with attendees via email or phone. Once everyone agrees on a time to meet, meeting organizers must find a meeting room that fits their needs and criteria as well as order audiovisual equipment, catering, and other additional services, register guests at the reception, and ensure the right information about the meeting is available for the finance department for tax reasons. When they are finished coordinating a meeting, meeting planners may find that they’ve spent more time scheduling the meeting than they will spend in the meeting itself.

Now, count in all the time spent and activities supporting a meeting from the different organizational units involved in meetings. Facility Management needs to ensure that the right amount and configuration of rooms are available. Facility Service can deliver the right table arrangement. The Corporate Kitchen provides food, beverages, or other services for the meeting. The Reception needs to keep track of today’s visitors and manage check-ins, print out visitor badges, notify the host of the meeting about the arrival of the attendee, and check out the guest. Finance needs to settle the cost of the meeting or manage everything related to tax and cost centers. A 1-hour meeting is never just a 1-hour meeting.

Due to all the related and surrounding activities to meeting room booking, meeting management is a true cross-organizational discipline that requires management focus, to ensure you do not waste time on poor processes and kill employee productivity due to context switch between systems. Without the right tools that integrate processes and bind organizational units together, you end up with a situation where a good 1-hour meeting in reality becomes a bad 5-hour meeting


What is the consequence of lost productivity?

Do you know how many unproductive meetings professionals attend every single week and how much time people spend arranging these meetings?

A study conducted by Atlassian suggests that most employees attend up to 62 meetings every month! This is supported by Ovum and by LogMeIn who reported an average of 17 meetings per week for Senior Executives.

Ovum reports:

  • Eight meetings per week, on average, across all employee types and company sizes.
  • 10 meetings per week for all employees above junior level.
  • 12 meetings per week for executive management and higher.
  • 17 meetings per week for VP, director, and c-level roles in highly collaborative industries—such as financial services, technology, and media
  • There is no disruption to your business because we take care of everything behind the scenes and keep your infrastructure clean.

According to a study conducted in September 2010, business professionals spend 4.75 hours of a typical workweek arranging meetings, including ordering and booking additional resources for meetings as well as re-ordering and re-arranging associated bookings and services while meetings get rescheduled and relocated all the time.

This is supported by new research from eShare. Their survey of 1,005 office workers in the UK revealed that the average worker spent one hour nine minutes preparing for each meeting and one hour 22 minutes attending it. That is simply insane. Now add the time spent per meeting for the rest of the organization to support that single meeting.


Win the lost productivity back in three easy steps!

1. Know your company’s needs

Ensure that there is a match between supply and demand when it comes to available meeting spaces and the technology available inside these rooms. Too often we experience that all meeting rooms are created equally. Well, to be honest, that is not the case, and that is not what you nee.

First, you need to figure out which types of meetings you have in your organization. Do you have a lot of internal meetings, project meetings, sales meetings, external meetings, stand-ups, video conferences, or…? Those different meeting types or purposes define the need you must think about when you design and configure your meeting rooms.

Secondly, figure out which kind of equipment is needed. There can be a wast difference in what yo need for, say, an external sales meeting, compared to what you need for an internal presentation in your company.

So go ahead and ask yourself some questions about your situation:

  • Do you want large screens or projectors?
  • How do you want to share content on that screen?
  • Wireless or cable connection?
  • What is the need for video conferencing in your organization?
  • How many rooms must be equipped with a conference camera?
  • Are you going for video conferences using systems like Cisco or Polycom, or are you a Microsoft kind-of-company?

All these different questions about meetings are important to ask to get a clear overview of how you should layout, design and configure your meeting and conference rooms, to support the specific needs in your organization. If you are able to answer these questions, then you are ready to deliver a meeting room solution which meets your users needs and criteria.


2. Know your people

So, with a good overview of the types of meetings you have and a great plan for your meeting room layout, it is time to think about who is involved in the meeting process in your organization. Here are more questions to get an overview of the people involved:

  • Do you book a room yourself or do ask an assistant or receptionist to do it for you?
  • If you order food or beverages for the meeting, who manages this?
  • If guests have to be announced at the reception, who are you contacting?
  • If you order a certain table arrangement, who is in charge?
  • When managing costs for the meeting, who is taking care of the cost center or tax reports?
  • If management wants an overview of meeting room utilization, who delivers these dashboards?

Make a swim lane diagram to get an overview of processes, time spent on different activities, and systems used. With this little exercise, you get a great understanding of where the productivity killer is lying in your organization.


3. Know the tools that change the game

Implement a solution like AskCody to manage all processes related to meeting room booking and meeting management. A solution like AskCody can completely change the way meetings are booked and managed, and how all associated items and resources are ordered for meetings across organizations and locations – all inside your organization's Microsoft Outlook and Office 365.

The AskCody product suite streamlines room booking and management and even finding hot desks -  all aspects of the business that are recognized as hurting productivity and increasing time waste. AskCody lets people search for and book rooms based on availability, the number of people, the purpose of the meeting, and in-room equipment right inside Outlook, and book and order associated services along with booking the room, from inside Office 365 or Outlook’s familiar interface.

With AskCody, you can provide the flexibility your employees need to stay productive and hence effectively and efficiently manage their time and activities in the modern workplace. Now you can ditch 3rd party applications or the use of other cumbersome processes like email, phone calls, or even sticky notes to book meeting rooms or services. Everything is now integrated into the familiar Outlook and Office 365 interface empowering the employees to achieve more with no need for context switch between systems.


What are the benefits for your business?

Your organization stands to benefit from the implementation of an integrated meeting room booking software because meeting room management processes have a direct impact on your overall performance and financial standing. All meeting room users free up time to do what is important to your business instead of spending time on cumbersome, unsynchronized processes

Whether it is a large corporation or an SME, too much valuable resources are being wasted in inefficient meeting management processes, which could be better spent elsewhere. Changing this will entail a collective focus on the approach to meetings across the business world, but AskCody is an all-in-one productivity platform that helps you simplify meeting scheduling and conference room booking. Save precious time and eliminate the nightmare of interruptions during meetings.

With AskCody, it is a great day for meetings! AskCody helps you create a happier, more productive and efficient modern workplace while optimizing available resources. With AskCody and Microsoft you can win the battle of the meeting room with an integrated meeting room management suite for Microsoft Outlook and Office 365.



Learn how to improve employee productivity booking and managing meetings, and enhance utilization and organizational processes from an integrated meeting management system.


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Allan Mørch

CEO & Founder, AskCody. Empowers organizations worldwide in creating better workplace experiences using AskCody.