Clean desk (policy)

Definition

The clean desk is the practice of keeping one's desk clean, organized and free of clutter and unnecessary documents at the end of each working day. Employees put away their belongings, including electronic devices, papers and other documents, to ensure that their work surface is empty and ready to be used the next day by another employee, if necessary.

To facilitate the application of this practice by all employees, it is common practice to offer a summary document called a "clean desk policy". This policy lists all the items that need to be tidied up, encouraging uniform adoption of the practice. You can also find advice on how to optimize workspace layout. For this document to be widely accepted, it needs to be co-constructed by employer and employee.

To what extent is clean desking practiced?

Clean desking is often practised in companies that have adopted the flex office, i.e. where employees do not have a dedicated workstation. Efficient organization of the workstation can also be supported by the company with ergonomic chairs and adapted storage accessories.

The clean desk policy is a recommended solution in work environments where information security is a priority, as well as in companies that place great importance on data confidentiality. By keeping desks clean and uncluttered, employees help reduce the risk of disclosure of sensitive information and maintain a professional, organized workplace.

What are the advantages?

Keeping a clean office has many advantages:

  • More efficient use of the shared workspace: with clean, tidy desks, employees can easily set up at any workstation.
  • The clean desk policy is good for the planet. Some companies are getting involved in the fight against climate change to reduce their carbon footprint, for example by reducing printing to important documents only.

With the right storage solutions, you can provide an office free from visual distractions, allowing :

  • Reduced stress
  • Greater concentration
  • Greater productivity
  • Make a good impression on customers or service providers visiting your premises

In a nutshell

The clean desk concept involves keeping an office clean and organized by removing all clutter and personal belongings at the end of each day. A "clean desk policy" is often put in place to encourage and clarify the rules around this practice. It is common practice in companies with flex office spaces, and a priority in terms of data security.

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