The pandemic has changed many things, but little did we know it would revolutionise the way we work. Offices across the globe, both large and small, are now incorporating a ‘hybrid working model’ into company culture – and to great enthusiasm. In fact, it’s hard to imagine our employees settling for anything less, post-pandemic.
So, what exactly is a hybrid working model? And how can it be implemented into a modern workplace?
A hybrid working model is a new flexible working arrangement that allows employees to split their time between in-person office working and remote working. It enables companies to accommodate the needs of their entire workforce, taking into account considerations such as physical health, mental health, family commitments, travel time, work-life balance, and the ability to do their job efficiently.
The model will be different for every workplace, depending on the nature of the work. For example, some roles in your organisation will need to be primarily on-site while some can be primarily remote. You may also wish to assign specific days for departments to come in together and connect. Essentially, the hybrid working model itself should also be flexible to meet the specific needs of your business.
And that’s not all. With many jobseekers now expecting remote working options from the organisations they apply to, if companies wish to attract and retain the right talent, a hybrid working model is becoming an essential and sought-after system.
Since lockdowns began easing, a variety of hybrid working models have been created in companies across the world. You can construct your own to fit with your employees’ current needs and your future aspirations as a company, but there are a few common models that seem to be springing up:
Mainly Remote: Many workplaces are finding that most workers are preferring to spend a large proportion of their working life at home, with only one or two days at the office. Models that are primarily remote may need to reduce the number of desks at their office, or space them out, or maybe even incorporate more creative brainstorming areas or video conferencing areas.
Split time: For those employers who favour balance and compromise, a split-time arrangement seems to work best. This may look different in different companies, and could be strict set-days or quite relaxed, allowing employees to book the days they want to be on site. Other techniques could involve having half the workforce in one week and at home the next.
Mainly on-site: Some employees find their company operates more smoothly with everyone on site as much as possible, while still giving workers the opportunity to spend a few days at home each week.
Employee decision: Some workplaces are recognising that each individual will have different opinions on the matter, with family life, home set-up and distance from the office all being factors affecting how much time an employee wishes to spend in the office or at home. As such, some employers are leaving it entirely in the hands of their employees to decide how many days, if any, they wish to spend in the office. These offices are likely to rely heavily on a hot-desk booking system.
It’s safe to say that most hybrid working models will require a new office layout and set-up to accommodate this blend of remote and in-person working. A new layout will also need to consider social distancing and other health measures, along with the increased need for video conferencing and virtual meetings – allowing remote workers to log on and speak to their on-site colleagues, if needed.
An office refit or re-design can help with this transformation towards a new hybrid future that accommodates your employees’ working needs, along with supporting their expectations for good physical and mental health. This may include bespoke furniture, lighting, zone creation, screens, and much more.
For professional space planning and office fit-outs, the team at Ashlar can help. Our approach is simple: design, plan, fit. So, whether you’re looking to refresh your office space for new hybrid working, or you want to update the company brand with tailored furniture and decor, we can help. Simply get in touch today – we serve companies across the UK.
Our dedicated in-house team can design, plan and organise the fit of your space. Our goal is to create innovative spaces designed just for you.
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