How To Implement Hybrid Work (5 Hybrid Work Model Best Practices And Examples)
Since the beginning of the pandemic, many organizations have been forced to think of new ways to make their businesses continue working, without endangering their workers.
And thanks to digitalization, many companies were able to shift their work to hybrid work models. So in this blog article, let’s talk about what hybrid working means, what are the TOP 5 types of hybrid work models, and why are they beneficial to both, the company and the workers.
What is hybrid work?
Hybrid work is a flexible working model that allows employees to work partly in the physical office space, and partly remotely – from home or other workspaces.
This type of work has many variations — for example, some organizations allow their employees to work one half of the week on-site, and the other from home. Other companies might divide their workers into groups — those, who work fully remotely, and those, who work fully on-site. And then there are also organizations that allow some kind of combination of the two
What are the main benefits of hybrid working models?
A study from 2021 done by Accenture found that more than half (58%) of the respondents have been working in some type of hybrid working model since the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic.
And they reported that they have noticed major improvements in their mental health, less burnout than those who still worked in the office, and even stronger relationships with co-workers.
So it’s clear that employees see a big value in hybrid work. Now let’s take a look at what attracts workers to a hybrid work model!
1. The possibility to work when feeling the most productive
When you’re working fully from the office, you are expected to be productive all the time from 9 am to 5 pm. And we all know that’s not really possible, as there are many factors that can impact our productivity levels.
However, in the hybrid work model, workers get more flexibility, allowing them to plan their work schedules to match their productivity levels. In other words, employees can complete the tasks when they feel the most productive.
Some people might feel the most productive during early morning hours, while others perform better after lunch.
2. Improved work-life balance
This benefit goes almost hand-in-hand with the last one because by planning your workday schedule, workers can free up some time for themselves or their hobbies.
When working fully on-site, employees get home only around 6 pm, feeling tired and wanting nothing more than to relax by the TV. This can strongly impact their personal lives and relationships with people around them.
With hybrid work models, people are not forced to sit at work for certain hours, even after the majority of the tasks have been completed.
3. Both employer’s and employee’s money is being saved
The monthly rental and maintenance of office spaces cost a looot of money. With working in a hybrid setup, fewer people are going to visit the office, so that means some organizations could consider renting smaller and therefore cheaper places or giving up renting an office place for at least some period completely.
And, for employees, most hybrid working models can help save some money on gas — if the hybrid working model allows employees to work from home, they don’t have to spend a part of their income on gas or bus tickets. Kind of a win-win situation, isn’t it?
4. Chance to hire talents from across the world
This most probably wouldn’t be possible with on-site working models, but with hybrid work settings, you can work with talented people from other countries of the world!
This is an awesome benefit because you can hire advanced people with different sets of skills and views on life, which allows looking for new approaches for your business!
5 types of hybrid work models
Now that we’ve looked at some of the main benefits employers and employees can achieve with hybrid work models, let’s talk about the five most popular types of hybrid work models that you can implement in your workplace if you haven’t already!
This model focuses on allowing employees to prioritize remote working, but can also be applied to working on-site or in co-working spaces.
The idea of a remote-first hybrid work model is to allow your teammates to work accordingly to their preferences — from places they feel the most comfortable. For example, those employees who perform the best working at home can do so, meanwhile, those who like from time to time visit an office space can freely do that.
That way each employee can work from settings they feel the most productive, therefore increasing their work efficiency and achieving better results.
This one is similar to the one mentioned before (by allowing your team to choose whether to work remotely or on-site), only works the other way round — the office-first model involves employees being more present in the office.
Many larger companies that can’t easily manage their work remotely tend to choose this hybrid work model, as it doesn’t require employers to think of too many digital solutions to make things work.
This model also works wonders for teams that have to closely collaborate with other teammates. By working in the office-first model, employees can accomplish all their tasks while still feeling some kind of flexibility with the chance of working remotely from time to time.
This is one of the schedule-based hybrid working models. The way it works is by dividing in-site and remote work days between the employees or employee groups.
For example, one group of people (let’s say, the marketing department) works on-site during the first half of the week, while the other group (might be a tech team or other department) comes to the office during the second half of the week. Or maybe they can switch between days and teams.
This hybrid work model allows flexibility to employees while avoiding overcrowding the office (which is especially important during the pandemic). And, by not working fully remotely, teams can still collaborate and socialize, therefore achieving better work results!
Employee-by-Employee Basis Model
This hybrid working model works the best for companies that require specific employees to work on-site. It allows team leaders to give permission to certain employee groups or individuals to work remotely.
For example, organizations that work in the manufacturing field (like factories) might need power plant teams on-site to work on safety checks, while other teams, like sales or administrative staff, don’t necessarily have to be physically on the spot to do their work.
The week-by-Week hybrid working model is quite similar to the Split-Week model. Instead of dividing the week among certain employee groups for the on-site work, team leaders assign work weeks when certain employees or teams need to be present at the office.
So, for example, the marketing team works on-site during the odd weeks of the month, while the tech team comes to the office on the even weeks of the month. This type of hybrid working model is especially beneficial for organizations with a large number of workers.
How to implement hybrid work models?
Now that you’ve learned about the five most popular hybrid work models, let’s discuss some steps you might need to go through to implement these models into your company as well!
1) Think about cybersecurity
Hybrid work requires working online, therefore you need to store many documents and data digitally. This, of course, increases the risk of cyber attacks — the possibility for hackers to steal your data.
So, by implementing hybrid work models into your organization’s work, you’ll have to think about cybersecurity. Make sure all your networks are secure and documents are stored on safe platforms.
Also, it can be beneficial to educate your employees about good cybersecurity practices they can do on their own!
2) Provide your team with all the necessary equipment
In order for hybrid work models to work efficiently, you have to make sure your employees have every equipment they need to complete their tasks. If they have an old, unreliable computer at home, allow them to take the work computer.
But you have to remember that, when and if you’re willing to implement a hybrid work model where your employees have to be on-site from time to time, your employees should be able to seamlessly transition between the home and the office.
3) Create clear policy
Create policies and procedures that make the move to hybrid working as simple as possible for your teammates. This might require either starting from scratch or revising an already existing flexible working strategy.
The things you should think about when creating clear policies include:
- Deciding on the type of hybrid working model you’re going to implement and how you’re imagining it to work;
- Telling your employees how they can request hybrid working and make clear who is eligible to do so;
- Making sure that each employee knows their responsibilities in regard to the new hybrid model;
- Reviewing how the new hybrid work model works in relation to your current company policies and make any necessary changes.
4) Engage your employees as a team
With hybrid work models comes the risk of developing disconnections between the on-site workers and those who work remotely.
To avoid it, you need to create opportunities for employees to interact with one another outside of the workplace. For example, you can organize different online team-building activities if face-to-face team-building activities are impossible or unsafe during these times.
5) Make training and development a part of your hybrid work model
Your staff may encounter new issues as a result of hybrid working, which they are unlikely to have faced before.
As an employer or a team leader, you should consider implementing learning and development programs to ensure your employees’ productivity.
This includes developing abilities to ensure successful communication between each other, performance management, team building, and others.
The bottom line
There’s no doubt that the pandemic has brought many challenges for larger and smaller organizations, and thinking of ways to continue their work while staying safe is one of them.
The hybrid work models were once thought to be a different way of working. However, as more workers want flexibility (and ways to stay safe during work), it has become progressively more common.
We hope this blog article gives you a clear insight into different hybrid work models and how they can benefit your organization as well. Stay safe!
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