By sensitizing your employees to cybersecurity, you can minimize human errors and reinforce your company’s security in the face of increasingly frequent and sophisticated threats. Employees can inadvertently become […]
What is hybrid work?
Although this concept has been around at some companies for many years, “hybrid work” or “hybrid workplaces” have been widely adopted and become part of our mainstream vocabulary. While the COVID pandemic contributed to the widespread acceptance of this method of working, technological advances, particularly with smartphones, cloud technologies, and easy access to the internet from anywhere have made it possible to work wherever we want.
What is hybrid work?
To give an exact definition, hybrid work encompasses everything between fully remote work and day-to-day work from the office.
More specifically, hybrid work gives employees the ability to work from both a dedicated office (“on site”) and from home (or any other place outside their official office). Some companies impose tight control around this way of working, for instance by allowing remote work only one or two days a week or even dictating the specific day. Others leave a lot more freedom, sometimes even letting employees decide how often they want to work at the office.
Some work better at the office, while others are more productive at home or even at a café. In any case, we all know that going into the office is still important for keeping up social ties with colleagues and managers, for teamwork and sometimes even for our own well-being. Hybrid work gives employees the option of changing their environment to match their needs, while maintaining a balance between two worlds. It offers a flexible way of organizing our days and work weeks and a greater feeling of autonomy.
What are the benefits of hybrid work?
Benefits of hybrid work for employees
Hybrid work offers a number of advantages for employees. Besides the flexibility to organize their day/week how they want, employees reduce their commute, which can be significant (a 2020 Airtasker survey counted up to 1.4 extra days of effective work per month for employees working from home). This in turn improves productivity.
In general, since the widespread adoption of hybrid work, employee satisfaction scores have all increased across the many studies and surveys conducted on the subject.
Benefits of hybrid work for organizations
While hybrid work can sometimes reduce a company’s overhead (workspace-related costs in particular), companies are realizing that it makes their employees more productive. This model is considered to increase the inclusion, dedication and well-being of everyone. Those are important factors for attracting new talent! The flexibility that comes with hybrid work is therefore now a real selling point for recruiters.
Hybrid work and changing workplaces
Hybrid work: equipment and security
One of the prerequisites for allowing employees to work from anywhere is undoubtedly the security of data being accessed or exchanged by employees. Another factor is the equipment they are provided with to ensure the same level of performance for everyone, whether they are working on site or remotely. Companies therefore need to have thought about these issues beforehand and provided all their employees with the right digital tools.
Although hybrid work seems to be the ideal solution for catering to employee well-being while maximizing productivity, it does require some adjustments within companies.
Providing high-performance collaboration tools for hybrid work
Flexibility in the workplace means that teams could be scattered across different geographical locations at any given time. It is therefore essential to have high-performance collaboration tools so that teams can communicate properly and remain as effective remotely as when they are face to face.
Companies need to rethink their tools and data infrastructure in order to ensure the same conditions, the same access to information and the same ways of sharing no matter where their employees are.
With the implementation of hybrid work, some companies are seeing the need to change their workplaces.
There is generally a greater need for meeting and conference rooms, with employees coming into the office to collaborate with their colleagues. These meeting rooms need to be equipped with videoconferencing equipment when part of the teams are working remotely.
Company buildings have become more of a collaborative space where employees come to meet up and share ideas, while the need to isolate themselves for in-depth personal work is easily met on days when they are working out of the office.
In addition, a number of workspaces can remain unoccupied for several days at a time, which can generate significant costs. Some companies are therefore turning to hot desking (shared work spaces that are no longer dedicated to a single person) in order to adapt to the number of employees physically present at the office each day, rather than the total number of employees at the company.