How automated desk check-ins work + FAQ

Instead of clicking a button or scanning a sticker, users can be checked in to their desks automatically by just walking into their office. Let's walk through how this works:

  1. An admin associates one or many public IP addresses with a building in Robin. This is the address that the outside internet sees when you’re connected to the building’s wifi.

  2. A user’s phone connects to wifi

  3. The Robin app pings our servers over the internet

  4. The user has their work status set to "In office"

  5. We check if that incoming IP address matches one of the buildings the admins told us about. If it does:

    1. Look for unconfirmed desk reservations in that building that are within the check-in window and start no more than 4 hours from now

    2. Confirm any of those we can find

    3. Send a push notification to the user, letting them know what happened 


Common Pitfalls

Don't forget to update your work location status to "In-office" for this to work successfully.


1. How long does it take for automatic check-in to happen?

You might be checked in within a few minutes, or it may take up to an hour. Your presence is regularly checked on a timer, and the frequency of the timer can be unpredictable.

2. Should I still scan my sticker?

Go for it! If you remember to scan your sticker, fantastic! The automated check-in is great for those who have a hard time remembering to check-in.

3. It seems like I only get checked in when I wake up my phone or open the app. I thought this was supposed to be automatic.

Phones will often defer background work until an opportune time to conserve battery. Interacting with the phone, especially with our app, provides a strong incentive to do that background work and ping our servers. If you hadn’t touched your phone, you probably would have been checked in slightly later.

4. I didn't get automatically checked in. Why?

Make sure you're giving it enough time ( at least an hour) for the servers to communicate. However, if you're waiting patiently for hours and maybe you lost your desk to Abandoned desk protection, then that's not the experience we are going for. Check these things in order of most likely to least likely:

      • Confirm your work location status is set to "In-office."
      • Connect your phone to office wifi

      • Make sure you don’t have low battery or are in any sort of battery-saver mode

      • Make sure you’re logged in to the correct organization on the Robin app.

      • Make sure the Robin app is up-to-date, both in the App Store and under Settings > Check for updates within the app

      • iOS: Make sure Background App Refresh is enabled for the Robin app (on by default)

      • Android: Check out to see if your manufacturer is being mean

      • Stuff generally works better if you avoid swiping the app away and killing it, though we should still be resilient against that

      • Make sure push notifications are enabled for Robin app (on by default for Android)

      • Make sure you’ve opted into Desk Checkin Reminders within the Robin app (on by default)

      • Check if you’re receiving the push notifications that remind you to check in to your desk. You should definitely get one ~30 minutes before ADP happens. If you aren’t getting them, something’s wrong. Uninstall and reinstall the app.

      • Make sure the desk you’ve reserved allows confirmations. This is an admin setting. Sometimes admins have to go to the location settings page and click “Apply to all” because individual desks have weird overrides. See the screenshot below. note that “Desk Check-ins” are enabled for all desk types. “Advance check-in window,” “local check-in only,” and “abandoned desk protection” also affect behavior. 

      • Make sure you aren’t using a VPN or proxy server on your phone

      • While connected to office wifi, make sure that your IP address matches the one configured by the admin. You can see your phone’s IP at . IP addresses can change, but US business class internet service usually provides a static IP.

5. What are the requirements for the building's IP address?

      • It should be the IP address you get when using wifi at that location. A simple way to find that is to connect to wifi at the building and go to, but admins should check with their IT people to make sure they aren’t missing additional possible IPs (backup connections, ranges, …).

      • The IP address should be publicly routable. Private addresses like or are a no-no.

      • The IP address should be static - this seems typical for business internet connections. Dynamic IPs are liable to change and might be feasible to use, but the admin will need to keep up with changes and reflect them in Robin.

      • The IP address should be one that employees cannot use from home, e.g. via VPNs on employee phones. Otherwise, we’ll get false-positive automatic check-ins.

      • CIDR ranges are acceptable, limited to /16 for IPv4 and /48 for IPv6. The limit is just because larger ranges are probably user error but can easily be changed

      • Limit of 20 distinct ranges/IPs per building, same reason

6. What if multiple buildings share the same IP?

No problem - we’ll check all matching buildings for desk reservations to check-in. However, you do sacrifice some precision because you might be physically located in Building A and get checked in to your reservation at Building B.





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