Hybrid Workplace: What Will Improve Employee Experience And What Won’t?
The modern work world is a collaboration of innovative physical workspaces and advanced digital mediums. It is a mix of the multiple concepts that different mindsets have had about an ideal workplace. There are 5 types of office models – enclosed workspace, open plan, hoteling, activity settings, and agile team space. The current scenario demands not one of them but a combination of all the five model types.
Now, in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, even when the “stay home, stay safe” slogan is slowly fading away, we know that the world will never be the same. People will be more cautious about hygiene and practice physical distancing for a long time. If we talk about the corporate sector or professional sphere, employers will have to build huge confidence in the workforce to return to the offices. This is where the Hybrid version of the workspace comes into the picture.
Let’s try to understand what a Hybrid workplace looks like, what works, what doesn’t, and how it impacts the employee experience:
What is a Hybrid Workplace?
You must have seen a row of small personal cubicles inside offices with separate workstations. And you must have also seen the large open spaces/areas with a distant cafe-like seating arrangement. A hybrid workplace is a combination of the two.
Besides the infrastructural distinction, hybrid models can also be defined as the amalgamation of virtual and physical offices. The biggest role in such a set-up is played by HR solutions. Even the hiring of new employees will be done using the HR recruitment software. The fact that part work from home and part from office is the new normal, HR technology will be highly imperative to streamline the everyday activities.
Why Needed Now?
With a demanding situation, employees will be expecting a change in the style and execution of work. And it will begin with the layout of the workplace. With time, as the situation gets better, only a small proportion of the workforce will work from home. But social/physical distancing will be ‘in’ for a long time. So, keeping in mind the necessity to stay healthy without blocking interactions, hybrid workplaces will be working wonders in times like this!
“Did You Know?”
As per the 5 priorities of Accenture to reopen and revamp business reports, the working environment would be made safer in order to boost employee confidence in returning to the office. And the prime step is to make them adapt to the physical/virtual hybrid mode of work.
What Would Work And What Won’t?
The implementation of this new style of working needs a few key considerations. There are things that would be beneficial and others to refrain from. Let’s have a look:
What Would Work?
- Separate/special sections for specific functions only
- Adopting smart technologies like a HRIS or Payroll software
- Combination of virtual + physical work
- Airy, sunny, and spaces with greenery
- Flexibility in work and timings
- Daily office sanitization/disinfection
- Security control
What Won’t Work?
- Asking 100% workforce to be present every day; better to start with 20-25% a day
- Calling a particular team/employee every day; rather start by one employee twice a week
- Large open spaces (everything gets mixed up and too much distraction)
- Close and cluttered seating arrangement
Impact on Employee Experience
Lastly, the most positive outcome of implementing hybrid workplaces is that it will drastically improve employee engagement and satisfaction. Technological products like HR recruitment software for the new joiners and payroll software for existing ones will enhance the experience altogether. Thus, try to focus on infrastructural changes, modification in the working ways, and staying abreast of the latest technological advancements as well as adopting the same.