Bring Office Workplaces into the Future with Hybrid Models

While the concept of remote work did exist prior to the pandemic, it was only available to a small portion of the American workforce.  Yet when stay at home orders became necessary for public health, 95% of office workers transitioned to working remotely at least part of the time.  After an extended test run that has yet to wholly conclude, the results are in: 97% of workers like working from home.


What makes remote work so appealing?  Those surveyed list a variety of benefits.  79% of workers are thrilled with the elimination of their daily commute.  In extreme cases, commute elimination allowed workers to recover several hours of their day.  73% believe remote work allows them to achieve an easier work-life balance.  Work is an important part of a professional’s life, but it must be balanced alongside other commitments.  A notable benefit related to work-life balance is the chance to spend more time with one’s family, something 46% of respondents reported doing.  These benefits are so treasured by workers that a third say they would take a pay cut to keep them.  Meanwhile, nearly a quarter of Americans say they’re prepared to switch jobs soon in pursuit of a more favorable remote policy.


The benefits of remote work aren’t only seen by employees.  Businesses are reaping rewards as well.  For every employee a company allows to work from home 2 or 3 days a week, that company saves $11,000.  These savings are a mixture of decreased overhead spending, reduced cost of employee absence and turnover, and higher productivity levels from remote employees.  Businesses across sectors and industries are embracing the remote revolution in their own ways.


As beloved as remote work is, only 37% of all US jobs can be done entirely at home.  To maximize remote benefits while coping with the reality of what a job demands, businesses are turning towards a hybrid model.  Employees work in the office when necessary and stay at home when the circumstances allow for it.  Allowing this degree of mobility improves worker productivity and encourages good habits.


So what does a hybrid office look like in practice?  The exact ratio of office time to remote time is likely to vary by company.  Some companies may wish to be remote first and only bring employees to a single location when necessary.  Others may take the inverse approach, only approving remote work on a case by case basis.  Some places may only expect their top leadership to come in every day while others may want every employee to work from the office part of the time.  The balance struck between these two modes is less important than ensuring the result meets both employee and company needs. 


Beyond division of location, hybrid workplaces give managers a lot of factors to consider. Planning office space must become more intentional when workers share desks throughout the week.  Ensuring inclusion and collaboration between locationally divided employees requires focus and attention.  The future has arrived in all its complexity.

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