A “Hybrid” Future of Work: The Increasing Demand for Flexibility

For decades and generations, work has always looked the same. Though some places had unique work models, for many of us, going to work at nine and leaving at five was the norm. Then came the global pandemic. Whatever worked before COVID is now a thing of the past. As we find ourselves departing from traditional work models, new buzzwords have also emerged over the past year. Like how the word “Zoom” became the Google equivalent of internet browsing for video calls, what will be the new buzz in 2021?

Employees Want Flexibility

Just like Zoom, hybrid work is a concept that will likely take over 2021 and the future of work. In HR, that means giving your employees the flexibility over where and when they get their work done. This could mean allowing your employees to work in the office or from home on certain days of the week; or having both full-time on-site workers and remote workers simultaneously.

The idea of a hybrid workplace came to light as recent studies find that 55% of employees want a mix of home and office working; while 47% say they’d look for a new job if their employer didn’t offer flexible work arrangements. We already know that working from home is here to stay, but it doesn’t have to be 100%. As stated by the study, “the best advice is to plan to work from home about one to three days a week.”

Key Benefits of a Hybrid Workplace

It’s clear that flexibility is no longer just a “nice perk” to have, but fundamental appeal that can define overall employee experience. On the other end, there are business owners who are still wary about letting their employees work entirely from home. This makes the hybrid work model a perfect compromise for both sides of the table. Here are other key benefits of a hybrid workplace:

  • Increased productivity: Just as every individual is unique, the time and place your workers are most effective will also be different. Allow your employees to choose and take control over when and where they prefer to work.
  • Less likely to be burned out: Long commutes to the office and after work responsibilities such as childcare and housework can often lead to burn out. The option to stay at home and not having to commute can save your employees enormous amounts of time as well as energy.
  • Wider talent pool: In terms of hiring, a hybrid model gives employers access to a wider selection of candidates. Not only does it appeal to more job applicants, but it gives you the opportunity to hire diverse talents from cities or countries elsewhere.
  • Flexible office space: For companies that have an office environment, with strategic planning between remote and in-person work hours, this could minimize the overall space an employer may need – leading to potentially lower rent costs even if the company is growing quickly.

Invest in Company Culture

As we’ve mentioned time and time again, not being able to bond in person can lead to a different experience. To make hybrid work for your workplace, where it’s not always possible to swing by someone’s desk for a quick chat, having a strong company culture is more important than ever. Check out some of our previous blogs that may help:

A successful hybrid work model isn’t simply just telling half your employees to stay home and the rest to work in the office; it needs to be strategically thought out. Start the conversation now with your employees so you don’t risk losing talent!