It's no secret that the COVID-19 pandemic shifted the way that we work. As a result, roughly 60% of US workers now work from home all of or most of the time, and that's the way they like it.
So, how are companies reacting to this workplace change? The hybrid work model has taken the professional world by storm, and it's essential to know how to adapt to it.
We've assembled these important hybrid work tips that will ensure both you and your workers are happy and productive, so read on.
What is a hybrid work model?
The most important tip for any business transitioning to a hybrid work model: know exactly what to expect.
Hybrid work models incorporate both in-office and remote work. Generally, this is done in one of two ways.
Most businesses will have employees work some days at home and some days in the office. The other option is to have some employees work from home while others work from the office.
Benefits of hybrid work
Hybrid work models can work for both the company itself and the employees that work for them. Some incredible benefits you can expect include the following:
- Enhance productivity
- Wider talent pool
- Higher employee satisfaction rates
- Preparedness for future workplace disruptions
A recent survey showed that 57% of respondents believed their organization was more productive overall after switching to a hybrid work model. This may be largely in part to an improved work-life balance for employees.
But, to reap the benefits of hybrid work, you need to follow the right tips. Let's dig in.
Do: Understand what your employees need
In general, employees around the globe rose to the challenges presented by the pandemic. They were able to adapt to the changes brought on by one of the most stressful times in recent history. Their employers need to stay aware of their continued challenges.
For many workers, the personal stressors of the pandemic are not entirely over. As an employer, you can help ease these stressors to better improve workplace satisfaction.
While you obviously can't address each employee's every single need, you can get a general sense of areas where more support is necessary. Utilize employee surveys to better understand what's working for your employees and what isn't.
You should also utilize one-on-ones and frequent check-ins to ensure employees are happy and productive. This feedback can help you adjust your hybrid work model to fit your organization.
Do: Have clear expectations
Employees need to know what's expected of them. New policies need to be concise but clear. Responsibilities and expectations must be clearly communicated so that everyone is on the same page.
Teams should also know who to reach out to when problems arise, whether they're working from home or the office. Knowing which metrics will measure their performance is also of utmost importance.
Implementing one-on-ones, whether digitally or in person, is a great way to make sure both you and your employees have crystal clear expectations of each other.
Do: Use the right communications tools
One of the biggest hurdles to hybrid work is communication. Employees are no longer a few steps away. That's why the right tools are essential.
Every single employee, whether at home or in the office, needs to be on the same page. They should all be using the same communications channels.
Luckily, technology has taken off in recent years to help workers communicate from a variety of different locations.
Don't: Make employees responsible for all the decision-making
While it might seem ideal to let employees decide which days to be in the office and which days to be at home, this can lead to miscommunications and a variety of other challenges.
Hybrid work best practices dictate that team members and managers must communicate to make these decisions together.
For example, if you need to schedule an important meeting, you also need to be sure the entire team is in the office on the same day. Hours can be flexible but need to be communicated and set together.
Don't: Disregard employee safety
Some employees may be trepidatious about returning to in-office work. While we've adapted to pandemic life in a variety of ways, COVID is still present in our communities.
Allow your employees the opportunity to wear masks, socially distance, or clean their workspaces. Investing in other sanitizing measures such as air purifiers and hand sanitizer dispensers is another great way to help your employees feel safe.
Don't: Let teams lose trust
One of the biggest challenges of working in a hybrid model is the erosion of trust that can occur. Management and workers may find that they trust each other less when some of them are not always present in person.
It is vital that communication is clear and that every employee and manager is on the same page. Keep remote workers in the loop, and remember their contributions.
Some potential solutions that can help teams stay up-to-date include the following:
- Daily memos of accomplishments and deliverables
- Weekly meetings to coordinate expectations
- Digital workflow trackers
Socialization activities can also help improve comradery amongst teams.
Let the hybrid work model work for you
With the right tools, the right communication, and the right expectations, the hybrid work model can offer huge benefits to companies across a variety of industries. Employee satisfaction, productivity, and employee retention can all soar when a hybrid work model is implemented correctly.
To get started with your transition to hybrid work, request a demo of our software. With these services, teams can be placed all on the same page so that hybrid work can work for you.