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Is virus the cold shoulder for hot desk model?

The GovHub model council and State Government want to impose on Bendigo may now be in complete tatters after advice yesterday by Australia's Chief Medical Officer Brendan Murphy.

The good doctor who has been assisting Prime Minister Morrison and the Federal Government guide Australia through the coronavirus pandemic yesterday made it clear there will be changes in the workplace, including how hot desking is managed.

Now hot desking is one of these so-called modern approaches to the workplace that is part of the extravagance of the GovHub model. Put simply, desks shared by any number of staff – wherever there is a spare new comfy chair and desk, that’s where you work, that afternoon or next day it could be a different location.

This is what Dr Murphy said yesterday:

I think hot desking would have to be done in a different way. I think- so, you've got the major features. So, distancing. So, staggered start times and finish times. We don't want everybody crowding on public transport at the same time. We don't want everyone crowding in the lifts at the beginning of the day and the end of the day. So, staggered working start times, distancing. If you are doing hot desks or sharing common spaces, frequent cleaning.

Where does this leave the dud GovHub modelling? Perhaps in tatters as the space between desks may need to be greater – less desks in the same space. Will this set the scene for cost overruns on a project of grandiose extravagance?

Heaven forbid, the Bendigo Bunch may even have to launch some consultation, perhaps with the community included in the process. There is no doubt staff associations representing employees at City of Greater Bendigo will demand new hot desk requirements are implemented.

But then again, why without a business plan or consultation, has Bendigo council blindly embraced such a dud scheme?

Coronavirus might be giving the cold shoulder to hot desking as modelled into the GovHub. We know that Bendigo people are also giving the cold shoulder to council’s betrayal of our future and independence.

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