Full time at work? Full time from home? Or a hybrid workplace? The discussion about to be, or not to be, at the office that is, has become a hot topic and the trend is that more and more people want to keep the opportunity to work from home, at least in part.
In an interview with McKinsey, Bryan Hancock, McKinsey Partner, states the following:
“One reason I think hybrid is here to stay is that it’s what employees want. In a survey we did, 30 percent of employees said they’d be likely to switch jobs if they were required to be fully on-site. And more than 50 percent of respondents said they’d like to work at least partially remotely.”
But of course there are other benefits to a hybrid workplace, in addition to making your employees happy.
One of the benefits is increased flexibility. Both for the employees and for the company. When employees can work from wherever they wish, the company gets more to choose from regarding the labor market. When you do not have to keep distances in mind when hiring your staff, you can hire over a much larger geographical area.
A hybrid workforce also means a lower footprint, purely on an environmental level. Both when it comes to travel to and from work, made by employees, but also with smaller premises that draw less electricity and so on.
According to information from Microsoft, the opportunity to be able to work at home also leads to better mental health for the staff, as the life puzzle gets easier to put together.
Clearly, there are advantages to a hybrid workplace, but of course there are traps as well. That is why it is important to have a clear plan and a good framework for how staff and managers should work so as not to lose momentum regarding productivity and culture.
How to build a well-functioning hybrid workplace?
1 Clear goals
Without clear goals, it will be difficult to run a geographically dispersed staff. What is the group or individual expected to have accomplished at the end of the day, week or month? Have continuous stand-up meetings where you quickly get an overview of the current situation and expectations and follow up on whether this has been achieved or not.
2 Trust your employees
When employees work from home, it becomes more difficult for managers and team leaders to get a visual overview of how things are going in different projects because that quick conversation by the coffee machine is lost. Here it is extra important to trust your employees. Many managers tend to want to control projects in detail, something that hinders both creativity and progress. If the staff has been given clear goals, there is no need for a meticulous insight into what each employee does during the day.
3 Focus on productivity, not activity
A hybrid workplace gives staff the opportunity for greater flexibility in the working day, something that is one of the great advantages of that arrangement. Many employers are concerned that their staff are not working their specific hours, but instead of focusing on the staff being active between certain times, focus on employees meeting their goals.
4 Make leaders and decision makers easily accessible
For a hybrid workplace to function as efficiently as possible, employees must be able to easily reach decision-makers when questions arise. It is not entirely uncommon for managers to be busy in meetings all day, but here you need to create a culture where you can easily reach out to those who decide. Whether it is by phone, email or chat, it is up to each department to decide, according to what suits them best. Accessibility needs to become part of the culture of a hybrid workplace.
5 Have the right tools in place
Technology is obviously an important part of creating a successful hybrid workplace. When collaboration is to take place at a distance, tools for communication and collaboration are required to promote this. Remember to make communication easily accessible and create alternatives that work for different groups. Telephony, video, chats and information pages, all that is required for staff to be able to maintain efficiency and productivity at a high level.
6 Encourage social initiatives
Something that entrepreneurs often worry about, when it comes to a hybrid workplace and teleworking is the cultural aspect. To create a successful solution, it is important to encourage social initiatives. It can be anything from planning continuous after-work opportunities to investing in a simple chat tool so that the staff can easily communicate in an informal way.
Those who invest correctly in a hybrid workplace can enjoy great benefits, as long as the implementation is done correctly. Want to know more about Soluno’s technical solutions for promoting a hybrid workplace?