The world of work has changed. In the past, organizations have traditionally followed one of two work models: in-office where everyone is in the office every day, or remote, where employees work at off-site locations.
Today, organizations have been forced to rethink how and where they work. In most cases, the answer is hybrid work, where employees are given the choice to work in the office, remotely, or a mixture of both.
The Benefits of Hybrid Work
There are many benefits that a hybrid work model can offer organizations, including:
- Improved flexibility | This allows employees to work from anywhere.
- Better work-life balance | Gives employees the choice of when they want to come into the office. This allows them time to coordinate their personal lives, reducing their stress and giving them more time to take care of themselves.
- Improved access to talent | Enables employers to recruit the best talent, by giving them access to a wider pool of candidates who live outside their city or province.
Despite these benefits, if a hybrid work model is not properly implemented and managed, it can create challenges across the organization. Here are some things to look out for:
- Increased reliance on technology | As teams become more dispersed, they will increasingly rely on technology to communicate, and if employees aren’t properly trained on how to use those solutions, it can create barriers to effective communication.
- Team-building challenges | In the past, organizations created cohesion by hosting team-building events such as happy hours or sports outings. However, it may be difficult to build cohesiveness when work-from-anywhere employees aren’t able to attend in person.
- Inequity between in-office & remote employee | In-person connection is arguably more powerful than digital connection, and remote employees may feel excluded during virtual meetings if they aren’t given the same opportunities to participate as their in-office counterparts.
Best practices for hybrid work
Keeping these challenges in mind, there are some best practices organizations can follow to bring employees together and create an effective hybrid work environment.
- Maintain constant connection with your teams | Working with dispersed teams requires constant communication and collaboration, so be sure to leverage effective solutions such as Microsoft Teams.
- Create resource library | Provide robust resources to help dispersed teams navigate their roles, maintain the security of their devices, and train them to use your workplace technologies and solutions.
- Create an infrastructure for organization-wide communication | Implement an effective communications strategy that allows you to reach your hybrid workforce all at once. This is great for emergency situations, communicating company-wide announcements and hosting meetings.
- Provide solutions that give all employees the same capabilities | With some of your employees in the office and others working remotely, make sure you provide them with the solutions they need to create an enterprise-grade communications experience, regardless of where they are.
As organizations rethink their operations and employee preferences, it’s clear that hybrid work is here to stay.
Download our Ultimate Guide to Hybrid Work. It highlights what you need to think about when moving to hybrid work and gives you some guidance for the future of work.