If we have learnt anything from our time under the restrictions of the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s that allowing employees to work remotely is a successful strategy for many companies.
That’s why over the next year, we’re going to see an increasing number of organizations adapt to a new way of working. The hybrid workforce model, in which employees split their time between in-office work and remote work, is set to be a trend of the 2020s.
In fact, the hybrid workforce model is rapidly becoming a reality. For many organizations, that reality is already here. For others, plans to fully transition to a work-from-anywhere model where employees mix their hours between office time and work-from-home is well underway.
So, with that in mind, what do organizations need to do to fully prepare for the transition to the hybrid work model? In this blog, we’re going to look at the benefits of hybrid work, as well as some tips for transitioning to this model for the first time.
Why the hybrid workforce model is here to stay
In a recent report, The Accenture Future of Work Study 2021, the majority of workers (83 percent) said that they prefer a hybrid work model that allows them to work remotely at least 25 percent of the time
More than 40 percent of workers felt they could be healthy and effective whether they were on-site or remote, with only a small segment of workers feeling as if they couldn’t be efficient or healthy anywhere.
Of those employees who feel they can be productive everywhere, 85 percent say that they plan to stay with their company for a long time.
Most tellingly, however, is that 63 percent of high-growth organizations have already enabled productivity anywhere workforce models - and a staggering 69 percent of negative or no-growth companies are still focused on where people are going to physically work (favoring all onsite or remote rather than enable hybrid).
The report states: “Location should no longer be the focus for leaders. By offering the right resources, workers can be healthy and productive...wherever they work.”
Preparing for the transition to a hybrid work model
Adopting a hybrid work model is now critical over the coming months and years as organizations improve their operational flexibility and build a company culture that’s better suited to their employee’s expectations.
With that in mind, what resources do organizations need to prepare for their transition to a successful hybrid workforce model in which employees are productive, efficient, collaborative and happy?
Here are a few tips:
✔️ Build a culture of collaboration, and have the right technology to enable it to happen
Employee communication is a prerequisite for a successful hybrid work model. It’s crucial that remote and in-office employees have a work environment where they feel comfortable communicating with their team and collaborating with their peers on projects.
A lack of the right communication technology is often one of the biggest hurdles in the communication of a hybrid workforce. Implementing tools such as video conferencing, instant messaging, as well as in-office huddle rooms and meeting rooms will go a long way for creating an atmosphere that encourages strong communications between team members.
✔️ Establish clear rules and procedures for your team
A hybrid workforce can be confusing and unproductive when there’s no clear guidance from management on what is expected of your employees. Employees shouldn’t be left guessing whether they are needed in the office on a certain day or free to feel like they can come in when they fancy it.
Instead, there should be a clear structure (of course with flexibility where possible) of what’s expected of your employees. For example, some hybrid workplaces may have one group of employees come in one week and a second group the next week, while others may have a process where employees are in the office for two days a week and work from home the remaining three days.
Clear structure will allow your organization to plan collaboration and in-person meetings seamlessly around your employees schedules.
✔️ Frequently gather feedback from your employees
Any successful hybrid work model requires an organization to improve how they listen to their employees. Understanding what’s working for your employees and what they might still need is crucial to understanding their wellbeing, productivity, engagement and motivation.
To do this, you can do something simple as an employee survey every week, month or quarter. This should give you a good indication of what your employees still need to successfully do their job long into the future.
Want to learn more about building a successful hybrid workforce and the technologies you’ll need to make it happen? Contact Genesis Integration today. Our team of collaboration experts would love to discuss this in more detail.