The COVID-19 pandemic has permanently changed the way we are working. Home office has had some benefits for employees: Some may have benefited from eliminated travel and more time with family, among other things. On the other hand, not everyone wants to work exclusively from home. In particular, they don’t want to miss out on the social aspect and they appreciate the short communication channels. Hybrid working is intended to remedy this situation.
Hybrid working is a combination of mobile, semi-mobile and office-based working. A flexible working model that leaves room for individual needs and life situations – if implemented correctly.
The benefits and challenges of hybrid working
The hybrid model is on the rise. The challenge for organizations will be to find the right implementation for themselves and their workforce. That’s why it’s important to address questions such as “Are there any departments for which hybrid working is out of the question because of the scope of their activities? How is the cross-location flow of information ensured?” at an early stage.
Employees have different personalities and values. The ideas that affect the daily work routine also diverge widely. The hybrid model offers the opportunity to find the best way of working. For organizations, this means a happier workforce, higher productivity and stronger employee loyalty.
According to a study by Barco, a hybrid work model is the most attractive option for employees. Three days in the office and two in the home office is the optimal split to combine the best of both worlds: social contacts and easier collaboration, on the one hand, more flexibility and freedom on the other.
The advantages for you, summarized at a glance:
- The best of both worlds is combined
- Travel costs and the associated stress, especially for commuters, are reduced
- Work can be organized in a family-friendly way
- Some work more concentrated at home than in an open-plan office
- Employees appreciate the flexible work schedule
- Presence days foster relationships with colleagues and superiors
Adapted to your organization
The biggest challenge is to adapt the processes to one’s own organization in such a way that everyone can reap the benefits.
The concrete implementation of the hybrid model depends heavily on the respective organization and the goals it is aiming for. The corporate culture also plays a decisive role here.
How the hybrid model works
We have put together a few tips for you so that hybrid working can also succeed in your organization:
Foster trust and autonomy
- By giving your employees more responsibility, you strengthen and promote autonomy. The focus here should be more on work results and less on the working hours performed.
- Discuss expectations and requirements clearly and coordinate them with your employees and, if necessary, with the team. Are there specific deadlines? When is the team working in the office? Who is responsible for what? Software-based solutions can help your team to always stay up to date.
- The hybrid model offers every employee the opportunity to find the best way of working. Some people want to work together on-site as a team, while others find it difficult to concentrate in an open-plan office. Doing a value and passion analysis will help you identify what’s important to your team, as well as the best way for them to work together. When we work according to our values, we are more productive.
Rules and boundaries
- People who work from home often feel that they have to be available all the time. This is a major stress factor that should be avoided. Set core working hours and binding appointments to ensure presence. Use office appointments specifically for communication and innovation work, while home office is ideal for concentration phases.
Keep everything in sight
- It is particularly difficult for team leaders to keep an eye on the team’s development in addition to the work results achieved, despite the fact that the team works independently of location. Digital queries accompany employees in the team context and analyze the team’s potential. This provides answers to questions such as “Where is unused potential? Where is the optimal area of application for an employee?” And specific impulses for action are provided.
Hybrid work models allow freedom for different life circumstances and can also have a positive impact on motivation and productivity. However, the prerequisites for this are clear structures and new processes. Data-based applications help managers to measure team effectiveness and make evidence-based decisions. A value base paired with measurable data makes it possible to leverage the full potential of teams, even when the team is working together from different locations.
Through regular and scientifically based queries, the platform for team development decodes the key challenges and strengths per team across 16 factors, including focus, interfaces, feedback, or agility, among others. With data-based improvement measures that have already been successfully implemented in comparable teams, the untapped potential is successfully developed. Optionally integrate your existing training, learning journeys, or coachings into the platform and measure what really has a sustainable impact on your teams.