The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the way we live forever. One of the most meaningful revolutions we've experienced and are still experiencing is the shift from traditional work to remote work and now to hybrid work. However, do you know the impact that hybrid office workflows have on your business?
If you don’t, it’s completely normal. We’re all experiencing together what it is like to work with a hybrid workforce, and if you’re trying to implement it in your company, you should know that a single variation doesn’t exist. Every company adapts this working model to their needs. Thus, the workplace workflow may be different from a company to another.
Before we continue discussing what a workplace business workflow is, let's look at the workflow process definition.
What is the digital workplace workflow?
Digital workflows allow your company to provide a better customer and workforce experience. Thus, it can grant them viable advantages and may also help with further company development and growth.
It’s also worth noting that this article is named after Adobe’s webinar, “The Impact of Digital Workflows in the New Hybrid Workplace.” This event happened not long ago, and it took into account several topics that are affecting business more than we think. For instance, according to the webinar host, Simon Long Bottom, the digital workplace workflow will "remove" the friction out of the current work system. This way, employees can become more prolific and may be able to focus on high-significance tasks.
During this webinar, it was revealed that Adobe assisted Pfizer while the company was trying to improve the document approval process they were using currently, which was being done via Microsoft teams. Adobe took out manual steps from the process, and according to the results, the efficiency was increased by about sixty percent.
Where is the work industry heading?
There is a lot of evidence that proves that hybrid work is the future of the industry. This includes the inclusion of new hybrid work technology, strategies, and changes in leadership views. Furthermore, it is known that many companies are adjusting it and adapting it to their goals and needs.
Recently, a new CEO survey conducted by Forbes Insights in collaboration with Adobe took into account about 505 CEOs in multiple industries across North America (80%) and Europe (only 20%). This survey asked leaders about workflow solutions and what their companies would do to adapt to the economic changes that the COVID-19 pandemic brought to their business and what they consider as a priority as a result of it.
According to the results, companies are adapting differently to the COVID-19 changes as they are at different points during their journeys. However, most of them have in common that they're bringing in a more "collaborative" workspace.
Other findings say that about 86% of the surveyed leaders think workflow solutions play a crucial role within the hybrid work structure. On the other hand, 52% of leaders answered that workflow solutions are needed if we want to succeed while managing the new hybrid structure. Less than a third of CEOs gave contrary answers.
Adobe’s future plans
Longbottom says that both workflow and collaboration are crucial for both the company and the customer. Furthermore, Adobe plans to switch from a purely remote work model to a hybrid one, at least in the U.S headquarters. These changes have been applied since August 2021.
According to the company’s new hybrid work schedule, employees will be able to work from home only two or three days per week. Selected employees may also be able to choose remote work if they apply for it. Hence, the result is a “flexible” and “digital-first” workplace. Longbottom expects that hybrid work becomes “the new normal” for Adobe.
What about other companies?
The results of the survey mentioned above demonstrate that a great part of the industry has similar plans, as they will add a “hybrid approach” to their companies in the months to come. At this moment, companies are looking forward to “see things from the point of view of an employee or a customer.”
Furthermore, Longbottom continued saying that collaborative tools are crucial if a company wishes to improve the customer experience, and the best part is that everyone benefits from it. He opines that hybrid work may be better than the traditional working model as people won't worry about commuting, which can save them vital minutes and hours of stress. Furthermore, it has been proved that a fully remote work model is still able to achieve high levels of productivity, unlike what's popularly believed. "If you can't see it, it's not happening."
Many employees find it easier to work from home where it is quiet. It is less complicated for them to hear their own thoughts, and they can work at the pace they need in a comfortable environment.
Hybrid work has become the standard among many companies since early 2021. After the experiment we were all part of due to the unexpected COVID-19 pandemic, we know that remote working is another viable work model. However, as the offices prepare to reopen and new advancements are made, hybrid work is the preferred option among employees.
Many employees are refusing to go back to the office, while others prefer working at the headquarters. However, this disagreement doesn't have to be seen as a disadvantage. On the contrary, it is another point that makes hybrid work even more valid. This way, employees may choose between working from home during selected days, while in-person attendance will be required for the rest of their week.
We can conclude that the hybrid working model is here to stay. The pandemic is far from over, and as the world continues moving, we are constantly looking for new ways of continuing with our normal activities. It is clear that most companies won’t be going back to the old ways, as many sources refer to the 9-to-5 schedule as “obsolete.”
All of us are still figuring out how the hybrid working model can work for everyone, and the answer will become clearer in the months to come.
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