Why Companies Should Consider Making Hybrid Work Permanent
The truth is, ever since the pandemic the workplace has seen a drastic change in the way that work can be carried out. It has created new and innovative ways for employees to get their work done. The majority of office-based organisations have incorporated hybrid work into their workplace. However, an article by the Evening Standard reported that PM Boris Johnson encouraged UK workers to get back into the office and return to working the “normal” way.
How is this to be balanced against the fact that hybrid work has become the new norm for many of us.
What is Hybrid Work?
Hybrid work is essentially the best of both worlds. It offers flexibility through the option to work remotely and in the office. The ratio of this is dependent on the organisation and what works best for them as a company.
Computer Weekly reported that 57% of UK workers who returned to the office chose a hybrid work model over full time remote or office work. With almost two-thirds of employees convinced that this method of working is the way forward, we take a deep dive into the case for permanent hybrid work.
Autonomy in the workplace is when an employee can work in ways that are best suited for them. Hybrid work is a great way to provide employees with more autonomy. They are given the choice to decide which days to work in the office or work remotely. The ability to do this will cause an increase in employee motivation and engagement as they are given the power to make decisions for themselves.
Employees having autonomy over their working environment also demonstrates that they are trusted by their employers. Showing employees that you trust them through giving them more freedom is a great way to form solid relationships. More autonomy lets employees not only know that you trust them, but also that you trust in their ability to perform tasks on their own accord.
The hybrid work model offers employees the chance to be comfortable. We’ve all been guilty of wearing a nice shirt in our zoom meetings, whilst on the bottom half we’re in pyjamas. Comfortability may also come from the chance for employees to incorporate their personal life with their work life. We’ve witnessed the warming moment during a work call when an employee brings their pet on the camera (when they’re not wreaking havoc of course). Or when a loved one brings them in a cup of coffee in the middle of a call. These little things give employees comfortability whilst they work, and in turn will have a positive effect on their wellbeing.
Whilst there have been debates on the level of productivity that comes out of hybrid work, it can be used as a great way to increase productivity. Employees can come into the office to work on team based projects which will cut down email traffic. The days of remote working can then be used to work on individual tasks that do not require other members of the team.
Hybrid work also helps with productivity through employees not being confined to work in one specific space. Whilst some employees prefer working in the office, for others it can stifle their creativity and negatively impact their work performance. The opportunity to work remotely as well as in person creates a healthy balance between the two.
Chance to socialise with colleagues ✔️
Hybrid work gives the team a chance to meet up face-to-face. Time to talk, reconnect and build relationships without any tech issues, awkward silences and the best part - it’s impossible to speak whilst on mute!
Sometimes going into the office can be quite intimidating for people when they are alone. To ensure that employees go into the office on the same days, employers can use a spreadsheet or shared calendar for the office rota. This way everyone is able to see when people will be working from the office. Employees can then grab lunch together and have a chance to socialise about things outside of work. This is also a great way to avoid feelings of loneliness and isolation that may occur through having solely remote working options.
These are just some of the reasons why employees are in need of hybrid work as a permanent option. If employers are considering going back into the office full time they should think about how that may unravel the hybrid work lifestyle that employees have found comfort in.