Workplaces have changed drastically throughout history as technology progressed and people adapted to take full advantage of new possibilities to become more productive. From the seamstresses and weavers of centuries past arose the gigantic factories and mills of the Industrial Revolution.

For some, the transition from the first location to the second location was a difficult one. Sure, titans like Titus Salt showed that a business mind could be combined with philanthropy, such as constructing Saltaire to provide a good quality of housing and living for the workers of his mill, but this was an exception rather than the standard.

As the decades rolled on, the office became the typical workplace, pooling human resources under one roof and slowly transmogrifying from a realm of typewriters and filing cabinets in the 1930s to a world of online computers in the 2000s. The office became the second workplace location, surpassing the mill and factory, and for most of the modern era it has been the stereotypical workplace environment. But this is starting to change.

A graph showing the evolution of the workplace throughout history.

The Advent of Mobile

Mobile technology has, within our lifetimes, been both science fiction (Star Trek communicators) and mocked (the ‘brick’ mobile telephone adopted by yuppies in the early 1980s).

The possibility of the technology was first doubted, and then derided—but more importantly, was the enormous underestimation of just how much it could reorder the world of work. Mobile phones became slimmer, more effective. The advent of desktops and laptops only accelerated this transition, eventually paving the way for workers to no longer be tethered to an office. 

We’ve moved from a concrete world of brick mills and paper-filled offices to an ephemeral internet that has unshackled workers from physical workplaces and proved a game-changer for businesses and the self-employed. Even national boundaries have been substantially weakened as an occupational barrier in many sectors.

Nowadays, the workplace is defined more by the task being done than a specific physical location, as the internet enables workers from every corner of the map to easily work together. Collaboration is made even easier due to the predominance of English as a first language in many countries, and a second language in plenty more. Top multinational corporations such as Microsoft, Samsung, SAP, among others, have long adopted English as the primary language to connect their various offices around the globe. 

The Work-From-Home Migration

The shift back to working from home is, ironically, harking back to the Middle Ages in some ways, and it’s not without downsides.

Individual personalities matter a lot, and some people find it very hard to compartmentalize their work and home lives when working from home. There’s no hard stop time, unlike leaving a traditional office and literally going home. The lack of boundaries makes it easy to feel as if we are never truly off work. 

Person stressed from WFH, drinking wine

The COVID-19 pandemic and ensuing lockdowns showed just how vulnerable a traditional business infrastructure can be to black swan events. And while the coronavirus pandemic is the first in a century, it’s also the most recent in a string of new influenza-type infections, following SARS, Swine Flu, and Avian Flu. In such circumstances, offices are simply untenable. Now that we have the technological tools and capabilities to be productive from another location than the office, working remotely is a no-brainer. But can we mentally afford to have our homes double as our remote offices? 

The Office vs The Third Location 

The modern emphasis on work done rather than time in the office is exemplified by the third workplace, which prioritizes productivity over clocking in and out on a set schedule. Not only that, individuals who have greater control over their working lives feel less stress. This means they work more effectively, improving matters for both the worker and the business alike.

A major advantage of an office or co-working building over home working is that every device needed is present. But the same is true of hotel business centers—meaning individual workers (or the business) are not required to shell out for business devices like printers, scanners, fax, Wi-Fi and more.

When comparing hotels with other third location options like co-working offices and cafes, the widespread location options cannot be beat. Co-working offices and cafes are typically located in dense, urban areas. While not a problem for those living in cities, the future of remote work is expanding outside traditional urban lodging imbalances. We’ve already seen this trend accelerated due to the pandemic, but the remote work ecosystem is decidedly broadening regardless.

Concerning safety, hotels have more dedicated staff and protocols to ensure your belongings are secure and your workday flawless compared to co-working centers and cafes. Another important yet often overlooked benefit of working from hotels is the ergonomically designed furniture. Sitting down for hours sounds easy, but do it in a chair that isn’t right and the ensuing back pain is no joke. Unlike cafes, hotels provide comfortable chairs that help reduce the chance of this happening. They can also provide the type of stimulation, aesthetics, and even scenic views that inspire creative thinking, focus, and ultimately, higher productivity levels.

Stunning view from hotel work room.

When in-person collaboration is needed for work purposes, hotel conference facilities enable this to happen easily. Hotels function perfectly for both solo working (private work rooms) and bringing teams together (conference rooms and collaborative, spacious lobbies), presenting businesses with a more flexible arrangement than the typical office and individuals with a better work-life balance than working from home.

People normally associate hotels with vacation rather than work, and these two aspects can dovetail perfectly when using hotels as the third workplace location. With a physical office, booking time off and having a vacation means both being cut off entirely from work and often being forced to spend big during the height of the holiday season.

Working from a hotel means that an individual can spend the day working and come evening or weekend, have a whole new city or offering of amenities to explore. 

Pool view at Thesis Hotel Miami.
Working from hotels like the Thesis in Coral Gables, FL mean pool time is just steps away from powering down for the day.

Private Work Rooms and Collaborative, Stimulating Co-Working Lounges Await

HotelsByDay enables workers to benefit from the third workplace location without breaking the bank. Local hotels with available workrooms can be easily found via the app, and accessed for periods of between three and 12 hours (ensuring that a full day does not need to be paid for).

In addition to comfort, privacy, and free Wi-Fi, workers can take advantage of any hotel amenities can be accessed during breaks and when work is done. A refreshing dip in the pool, a much-needed spa session, an invigorating gym session, are all steps away.  

HotelsByDay offers thousands of hotel options to choose from in places people need them most — whether that’s close to airports, nestled in business districts, or close to shopping hubs or even the beach. Experience the new third location at its finest. Book a work room today.

Work from a hotel. Book with HotelsByDay

Photo Credits:

Featured image property of HotelsByDay

“Workplace Evolution” property of HotelsByDay

“Stressed woman drinking wine” by Zachary Kadolph on Unsplash

“Hotel View” property of HotelsByDay

“Thesis Hotel Pool view” courtesy of the Thesis Hotel, Coral Gables, FL

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Richard Kilner

Richard Kilner is a writer from the UK with more than a decade of experience covering non-fiction subjects including the travel industry, banking, sports, and betting in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, and elsewhere in the world.