We all were witnesses to the shift from a traditional work model (or "9-to-5") to remote working in 2020. However, since 2021 started, this trend started to disappear as the COVID-19 pandemic stopped being as harsh as it was last year. So now, most companies are opting for a hybrid workplace model where people can alternate between working from home and in-person attendance during selected days of the week.
For today's article, we'll explain everything you need to know if your company is moving to the new hybrid working model. It isn't an easy transition and considering as much information as you can make the shift easier.
What is the hybrid workplace model?
There are tons of companies moving to hybrid work, including large enterprises like Microsoft. Although there isn’t a single definition to what a hybrid workforce is, you can learn some of the most popular trends:
As mentioned above, hybrid working may imply alternating between working from home and in-person attendance during selected days.
However, it could also mean that some employees are eligible to work from home permanently, while others must return to the office.
Some companies are opting for choosing specific units to work at the headquarters, while others will work remotely instead.
Besides what’s been mentioned above, some companies are even giving employees the opportunity to choose the best approach to their work.
We can conclude that companies moving to hybrid work mode may use a rotating schedule or a fixed schedule based on where the employee is working. Others are letting employees decide for themselves how they want to work.
If you have decided to move to a hybrid workplace as it appears to be the best approach to your company, it's worth taking into account the following aspects so that you can be prepared for this new experience. This can range from mindset factors to hybrid office furniture.
Aspects that companies moving to hybrid work should consider
We need balance in most areas of our lives. Our workplaces are no different in this aspect. Thus, it doesn't matter what path you've decided to take; it is essential to bring some balance into it.
For instance, statistics say that 68% of leaders believe that teammates should be present at the office at least three days per week. They consider that in-person attendance is necessary to preserve the company culture. Contrary to this, more than half of the workforce prefers to continue working remotely at least three days per week.
This doesn’t have to be a problem, though. Flexible work opportunities and the hybrid work model go hand In hand. However, that doesn't mean that this model implies some "free form."
Firstly, companies should evaluate the organization chart and determine what positions are eligible for remote work and what others should go to the office, including when. It is also necessary to determine the best communication channel for those units working from home and those present in the office without compromising either team's productivity.
The COVID-19 pandemic is still ongoing. Hence, the main concern for everyone should be safety. However, companies can achieve this so-called balance by taking into account each role's responsibilities and every employee individually. Consequently, it is equally important to take into account role-specific matters and personal context.
2. Productivity and Motivation
Balance and productivity are equally important within a company. However, each person's motivation and productivity are affected by different factors. For instance, an employee that works in a rotating schedule will continue having a mediocre performance, but the scenery change will diminish the monotony.
It seems like giving each employee the choice of choosing the best approach to their work functions better. For example, some employees may be more comfortable while working from home, while others may prefer to remain at the office.
However, you can still get to know what works better by testing different approaches during selected times.
Another major issue for companies moving to hybrid work is connection. It can be hard to feel connected to another individual if you don't see them in person that often. Thus, managers must think of a way to keep their remote teams and their in-person peers connected by organizing meetings to share personal news, for instance. Team bonding activities are hugely crucial in a hybrid workplace model and shouldn't be left out.
Last but not least, it is necessary to figure out what kind of technological solution you will use to manage every team within the new hybrid workplace model. There are many companies that dedicate their time to create excellent resources. Space management software tools are available everywhere; it's just a matter of choice.
It is crucial to choose the right solution so that each team can remain connected and all the company-related data can remain secure within the same place. Furthermore, collaboration tools should be implemented so that every individual and team can continue being productive.
There are tons of upgrades that need to be made to the office spaces. For instance, some companies are opting for solutions like office hoteling or hot-desking to manage those employees that opt for physical attendance.
Hybrid work is here to stay. It is known as “the new 9-to-5,” but it is still uncertain how it will play out once the COVID-19 pandemic is over. We’re all test subjects to this worldwide experiment, and we’re all also figuring out what works best and what does not in different contexts.
It should be easier for most companies to adapt to the new hybrid workplace model in the following months. Considerable advancements have been made since the beginning of the New Year. The industry is constantly evolving and looking for more ways to make hybrid work a more viable solution for everyone.
If your company hasn’t adapted to the new hybrid working model, perhaps all you need to get started is to evaluate your company’s needs and goals and align them with the aspects that the hybrid workplace needs in order to function. Without testing it appropriately, you will never figure out what works best for your company and what doesn’t.
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