The news on post-pandemic activity is getting better every day. States are “opening up’ and new normal is on the horizon. This leads to new ideas of what the environment will be in the new workplace. Employees are embracing new ways of working, including a hybrid work model.
Many companies held an assumption that a remote work environment would inhibit productivity yet surprisingly, most experienced a successful, productive transformation. Employers now have an opportunity to create a workplace that is more connected and balanced with proven, successful results. Working from home or WFH and Hybrid models are emerging, and they are uniquely serving both employee and employer. A hybrid is necessary for most companies as majority of employees (80%) are eager to reconnect, share camaraderie and collaborate in person.
Gallup reports that 56% of U.S. Employees are working remotely, while 61% desire to work from home and JLL survey says 66% want to work a hybrid work week.
SalesForce took a survey of over 3500 employees worldwide and found the pulse of the future to be a hybrid workplace.
The hybrid workplace is a widespread answer to accommodating differing parts of the country at varying phases of reopening. Hybrid also offers collaborative workspaces that accommodates those who enjoy the networking
The WFH mindset unlocks new growth in many new ways. WFH shifts recruiting strategy and enables recruitment for top talent from all over the world, affording smaller to mid-sized companies a more attractive, equitable playing field. Working remotely is one of the most desired offerings for job seekers. WFH or a Hybrid workweek also allows employers to attract the talent from less-traveled talent pools. The recruitment reach is endless geographically, the 8am to 5pm work schedules and unending back-to-back meetings fade. Expansion does not mean more cubicles and more square footage; it means greater market share. There’s also an upswing in the little things that increase production and the quality of a workday for your employees. Little things like minimized monthly parking fees, long commutes, public transportation stress, workplace distractions and freedom to work during hours that are most productive for the individual. The little things all make for a positive sense of work.
Reduced costs of WFH for companies have proven to save many from layoffs during the pandemic, some have even seen increased profits. No physical building costs, employee turn-over, office supplies, and utilities gave a boost to the bottom line.
The newest outlook for WFH spaces is that work is not a location but an outcome.
Office occupancy would look different to most. The common in-office employee would come together 1-3 days or partial days per week; this includes client meetings, collaboration time, operational procedures, and training.
Re-designed workspaces that encourage connection times for meetings and education that can’t happen remotely is a must.
Increased learning is a benefit of this new work footprint, for the employer and the employee. Webinars, YouTube and Zoom collaboration have made their way into all areas of growth and most online training can continue remotely. However, creating spaces and scheduling in-office times where the employee can get hands-on training are necessary to promote positive experiences and spurs competitive, ambitious goal setting. Look for smaller side conversations and impromptu coffee-station-chats for employees on the creative teams get some of their best ideas while others learn. These scheduled, collaborative times design and inspire the brand and culture you want for your company.
The year of WFH has solidified high productivity and work-life balance. Employees that have experienced higher productivity and home-work balance are happier in their jobs, which produces higher retention rates. Happier employees are loyal to their companies.