Hybrid working

Hybrid work – yes or no? 6 articles for and against

Teodora Penkova

It’s hard to tell what the future holds for us. But if I had to guess one thing, I would say uncertainty. 

The ever-changing restrictions due to the pandemic are pressing companies to be more flexible than ever when it comes to writing policies about the future ways of working

We would’ve thought that hybrid work is seen as the best option by everyone – employers, HR and employees. Surprisingly or not, this isn’t the case and people are divided by different views

Some see hybrid work as the perfect balance between work and personal life, while others prefer to be in the office most of the time. 

The truth is that there’s no right or wrong. There are many things to be considered, from tackling inclusion and proximity bias to how much people worry about their impact on the environment. 

We found 6 articles that give a good overview of both opinions. 

1. Hybrid Working Isn’t Working — Go Remote

Callum Adamson for Forbes

The pandemic thought many organisations that their staff doesn’t have to be in the office full time to be productive. However, many of them still can’t give up the office completely and are trying a new approach – shifting to a hybrid working model. 

Many organizations are embracing remote working as part of their post-pandemic return to the office, but a hybrid approach will create new problems. It's better to go completely remote.

But why is this not going to work? And should companies use hybrid work as a stepping stone to embracing fully remote working? 

According to this article hybrid makes it harder to hire talent and people have to deal with an unequal environment which means those on-site are more likely to get higher pay raises and bonuses. On the other hand, remote working makes it possible for businesses to recruit people from any part of the world. 

These are all valid challenges that organisations will face if they choose to go hybrid and that’s why is important for business leaders to listen to their employees before implementing new policies. 

2. Why workers might eventually reject hybrid work

Bryan Lufkin for BBC

Is it possible for employees to be the ones who will fall out of love with hybrid work first? According to this article, the answer is yes. 

The author is stating that employees who often work from home could perceive a negative impact on their career, linked to a lack of interaction with colleagues and managers. Some people might find it difficult to switch between home and office and for employers it is almost impossible to set up two workplaces that are equipped well enough. 

 

No matter where they are working, they are almost always someplace trying to do something without some necessary tools.

Annita Woolley

The positive effect of meeting colleagues face-to-face and socialising in real life is also mentioned in the article, explaining that these interactions help employees feel more engaged with work. 

As we read further we can see that In the centre of it sits a very strong argument about the link between proximity bias and presenteeism and the career progression in the hybrid world.

And as much as we are on the side of hybrid working, we agree that companies should really think about how they can create an inclusive workplace where everyone has equal opportunities to succeed. 

3. Business Leaders Are Changing Their Minds About Hybrid And Remote Work

Joe McKendrick  for Forbes

A survey of 1,500 executives released by Riverbed and Aternity, shows that 97% are comfortable with at least some employees working hybrid for the long term. A majority, 83%, expect at least one-quarter of their workforces to be working longer-term in a hybrid model.

So why are business leaders not fully embracing the possibility of hybrid work? 

For many, the concern is about equal opportunities rather than managerial perceptions: ​​at least 88% are concerned about digital disparity between in-office and remote employees.

 

Business leaders, who typically depend on face-to-face relationships, will now need to master employee engagement in environments in which people aren’t physically connected

Ed Boyajian

president and CEO of EDB

The article is a good overview of possible pitfalls when it comes to hybrid work. It’s not completely against adapting fully to the new model of working but rather than that it can be viewed as a starting point of what business leaders should think about when creating new working policies. 

The best arguments for hybrid work

1. Is The Hybrid Work Model Worth It? Or Is It All Hype?

Nick Leighton for Forbes

When we talk about the effects of hybrid work we should consider employees’ and employers’ points of view, and this article is evidence that the hybrid model can be positive for both – from a more balanced life to higher productivity and profits. 

For many, this new work model has introduced an appreciation for a better work-life balance. Sure, they may still have to report for daily meetings. But this has still introduced a new level of freedom and control of their time.

Most of the studies conducted on the topic of hybrid prove that it works equally well for people and for the business. But leaders still should listen to their employees and make a decision based on their specific company requirements. 

2. Planning for hybrid working

Advice on how organisations can plan and manage a move to hybrid working

CIPD

The CIPD’s Embedding new ways of working post-pandemic report shows that some 40% of employers said they expect more than half their workforce to work regularly from home after the pandemic has ended.

The article covers many of the benefits of hybrid work. Some to name are better work–life balance, greater ability to focus with fewer distractions and more time for family and friends. Other benefits for the business include saving on office space and reduced absenteeism. 

 

 

The full benefits of hybrid working as a specific form of flexible working are yet to be fully researched but we can expect that it will, when properly implemented and supported, lead to similar benefits for both employees and organisations alike.

It also offers a guide that can help business leaders to establish this new way of working .

 3. How Companies Can Thrive In The       Emerging Era Of Hybrid Work

Josh Millet for Forbes 

The pandemic is forcing business leaders to reconsider their assumptions about how and where employees work. The transition to remote work certainly wasn’t smooth but a significant proportion of companies found that it was surprisingly effective.

The transition to hybrid work isn’t just a logistical challenge — it should also prompt companies to reassess how to build and sustain a healthy workplace culture.

The article focuses on how companies and employees should take full advantage of hybrid work but also how to avoid any cultural problems and burnout. 

Even though many companies are leaning towards a hybrid working model there are still things that need to be decided. It’s hard to say for sure if long-term this is the best approach but it has many benefits and it’s clear that employees will demand more flexibility and freedom in their working lives. 

 

Our Returning to the Workplace survey allows you to  gather meaningful feedback from your employees, and helps you decide what would work best for your organisation. 

It’s fast, easy to set up, and free. Learn more:

Use the Returning to the Workplace survey for free

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