The Covid-19 pandemic has resulted in a huge number of employees working from home. In this article, we look at a hybrid model of working – a mixture of home-based and office-based.
What is meant by a Hybrid approach to working?
The Hybrid approach is a plan that incorporates a mixture of in-office and remote work in an employee’s schedule. Employees occasionally can pick and choose when they work from home and when they come into the office.
There is no one-size-fits-all hybrid model. The hybrid model can look different for every organisation, depending on their business objectives and the preferences of their employees.
What are the benefits of using the Hybrid working model?
For employees, full flexibility is gained for the location of their working hours which can be adapted to suit their individual lifestyles. When Covid changed the face of the workplace, working from home became a blessing for many employees, offering a more equal work/life balance, aiding responsibilities like childcare, and saving money on petrol or commuting costs.
For employers, productivity and engagement are more likely to be optimised when employees are working at their preferred location and schedule. Employers can avail of attracting and retaining the top talent if they offer a hybrid approach to working, not restricting employees to working full-time in the office. Throughout the working from home era during the pandemic, it has become apparent to many office-based organisations that employees can be equally productive and focused at home, without being in the office full-time. A hybrid working approach could open up the cost-effective opportunity for smaller work offices to utilise the reduced numbers coming into the office on a weekly basis.
Among employees at Allianz Partners Ireland, 49% want a blend of office and home-work lifestyle, while 51% have expressed they would prefer working from home completely, according to an all-staff internal survey completed earlier this year.
How do you make the Hybrid working model succeed in an organisation?
A hybrid working model can only succeed if it is carefully tailored to the needs of the organisation as well as what can suit the majority of their employee workforce.
It is crucial that two separate cultures don’t develop as a result of the Hybrid working approach – an in-office culture and working from home culture. To prevent this, employers should ensure all employees are up to date on policies, staffing changes, company successes, and tips for making the hybrid work options work. Employee engagement should be closely monitored for all employees whether they are in-office or working from home to ensure sufficient productivity and motivation are being fulfilled.
Ultimately, a hybrid working approach will only flourish if it works for both the organisation and its employees. Post-pandemic, the focus needs to be on creating a warm work environment, both in-office and at home, while becoming more productive than ever.