THE WAY TO NEW – HYBRID – WORK
The question of how we will work in the future is the most pressing one nowadays. After working remotely for over a year due to the pandemic, we take stock of the issue. What works well, what needs to be worked on and what will the future working world look like?
We recently conducted a quantitative survey in Germany to understand what people actually want from the future: Overall remote work leads to higher work satisfaction and we assume hybrid work could reach even higher levels of satisfaction when properly balanced, leading to a higher work performance.
#Personal communication matters in the end
The quick switch from office work to only remote work has led to challenges for many employees. Our survey showed that communication in remote work suffers in particular. This important factor can often be implemented less effectively online than in the office. Random encounters in the hallway and lunch together in the canteen are no longer happening. Every brief chat must be actively planned. However, many are realizing how important this is in terms of productive work.
Recommended Action: Superiors must encourage regular face-to-face contacts and personal meetings to support social interactions. An ideal working week includes working remote as well as in the office.
#People are tech savvy across generations
Another factor that was examined within our survey are the technical requirements that are necessary for mobile working methods. Here, it was initially assumed that 50+ employees in particular have difficulties switching to remote work. In the course of the survey though, this assumption had to be decisively rejected. Overall, a very high level of confidence with the used technology while working remote could be ascertained.
Recommended Action: Leverage employees existing tech savviness with advanced tools and services to further develop their digital skills. Don’t forget they also learn from private experience.
#A new work-life balance in its making
Finally, the factor of better work-life balance due to the mobile working method was examined. Results show that employees with and without children appreciate this flexibility. The mobile way of working definitely blurs the boundaries between work and private life. However, the majority of interviewees appreciate this new working environment.
Recommended Action: Identifying the right work-life balance based on individual needs and company requirements will be the challenging part of management. Running an internal employee survey could close this knowledge gap.
HYBRID WORK: MORE THAN A TREND
Additional food for thought can be found in the article Hybrid Work – Finding the right balance. Company statements such as from Microsoft and Google strongly support the hybrid work strategy.
“Over the past 12 months, we’ve figured out how to get things done when everyone is working from home. Now we need to rethink how to handle that messy middle—when some people are together in-person, and others are remote.” Jared Spataro, CVP at Microsoft 365
A good read: Microsoft 2021 Work Trend Index and Life at Google post
Hybrid work will definitely define the future of work. We’ll keep you updated!