The COVID-19 pandemic drastically changed the work lives of many, especially those working in offices. New challenges and opportunities are arising for both employees and employers in almost every industry. Many workers want to return to the workplace, but they also want to keep the benefits and flexibility of remote work.
But getting a hybrid work environment to function correctly is a complex and difficult task. For leadership beginning to take on this challenge, here are some tips and approaches to consider for hybrid workplace success.
Rethink the open plan
For many years, office environments trended toward a more open plan with individual workstations as well as collaboration areas. But as people return to the office today, these spaces need to shift. Collaboration spaces need to be open and flexible for quick meetings and connections. Meanwhile, individual workstations need more enclosed spaces to accommodate the privacy that people have become accustomed to while working from home.
Connect digital and physical experiences
IT infrastructure and security are a crucial part of getting the hybrid-remote experience right for your employees both today and as configurations continue to evolve. Using a cloud technology allows your company to maintain order and security across all work environments.
Adopt a ‘remote-first’ attitude
In a hybrid work environment, inequalities can quickly creep in. It can be easy for remote workers to feel left out or almost completely ignored. To solve this issue, keep your remote employees top of mind. For example, you might need to schedule more check-in meetings with remote employees since you are not bumping into them throughout the day. And when you plan meetings and events, always be thinking about the remote experience.
Balance focus and collaboration time
As employees shifted to working from home full time, workplaces saw an average drop of 37% collaboration time, according to a 2020 report from Gensler Research Institute. As leaders attempt to re-boost collaboration, it’s important to remember that effective teamwork happens when there is balance in group work and individual focus time. People need time to process their ideas and execute on their assigned tasks. As a solution, talk to your employees about what works for them and be open to a fluctuation in working styles.
Adapt to remote recruiting and onboarding
Recruiting and onboarding practices shifted to virtual during the pandemic and many HR decision-makers believe they continue this approach for its numerous benefits. Companies can now interview candidates from anywhere, which opens a wider pool of talent to pull from. It also provides the opportunity to create a more consistent onboarding experience.
Follow these tips to ensure your organization implements a thriving hybrid work experience. The best policies are well thought out and consider every employee’s needs. (BPT)
Ways you can help local small businesses thrive
Small businesses aren’t just for tangible goods. Many provide important services, such as your local mechanic, dentist or insurance agent. So, no matter your needs, try and find businesses that are active in the community.