The future is here! The 9 to 5 office workweek has lived out its days. Organizations are now adopting a more flexible approach to running their offices during COVID. And why shouldn’t they? After all, a hybrid workplace accounts for the needs of both businesses and employees.
However, switching from a traditional model to a hybrid one isn’t straightforward. If you have taken the leap already, you know the challenges far too well.
Despite the numerous benefits a hybrid workplace offers, many early adopters report that they can no longer use their old ways to:
- Lead their employees
- Maintain the work culture
- Communicate with their employees
- Ensure collaboration
So, how can companies rise up to meet these challenges?
Well, the hybrid workplace model is young. And because of this, there have been limited opportunities to assess its performance or plan for its long-term results. As a result, you may feel stuck in the ‘experimental phase.’ But there’s good news.
You can overcome these troubles by taking a proactive approach. To help you, here are five ways to sustain a hybrid workplace during and after the pandemic.
1. Get the Job Done Through Technology
Modern technology is the cornerstone of the hybrid workplace. No, you don’t need to transform your workplace into a futuristic -AI office from a sci-fi flick. All you need is the right technology to support your employees. Here is how you can do so:
- Reliable hardware: Many remote workers rely on personal laptops, desktops, or smartphones. This arrangement is not ideal from a security point of view. At-home devices may also malfunction or perform poorly, leaving your workers in a fix. So, invest in robust tech devices that can ensure your employees don’t face any technical hiccups.
- Collaboration tools: If remote and on-site employees work together, they need internet-based collaboration tools. You can pick a platform like Slack, Microsoft Teams, Zoom, or others based on your company-specific needs. Just make sure your employees have ways to connect quickly.
Cloud storage: Move all your work to cloud-based storage systems. So, your teams can work together in real-time, no matter the location.
- Security software: Extend your security measures to your employees’ devices and networks. Provide them with malware blockers and VPNs to prevent data leaks.
2. Create Exclusive Spaces Within Your Hybrid Workplace
While collaboration is necessary, sometimes employees may need to talk individually. So, carve out some private areas in your hybrid workplace where on-site and remote employees can have confidential meetings, undisturbed.
Think of them as meeting rooms, but scaled down. They may be small offices or compact rooms with tables and chairs. Regardless of their size, make sure they are enclosed and soundproof.
3. Create a Hybrid Workplace Policy
To run your hybrid workplace smoothly, you must learn to manage on-site workers, remote teams, and how the two groups interact. Chalking out a hybrid workplace policy is a good place to start.
To ensure your policy is foolproof, you must:
- Define your core values
- Standardize the way your employees work
- Establish rules and encourage consistency
- Allow for flexibility but define non-negotiable duties
- Clarify the expectations and responsibilities
But first, take time to understand your team’s unique needs. Use feedback from your employees, managers, and HR personnel before crafting your hybrid workplace policy. And after you formulate your policy, you must broadcast it uniformly.
4. Make Your Hybrid Workplace Inclusive
When your team members don’t interact regularly, inclusion in the hybrid workplace becomes a priority. While this can be difficult to achieve, it has long-term benefits for your work culture. Sure, but where do you start?
To begin with, make sure all team members:
- Have equal access to the same resources, benefits, and opportunities
- Are treated respectfully and fairly
- Can communicate freely, no matter where they are working from
- Can contribute to the success of their team and their company equally. Leaders consider the thoughts, ideas, and perspectives offered by all individuals.
5. Use Hybrid Workplace Management Software For Your Operations
Let us go back to square one: technology drives the workplace of the future. Not only can it help with the workload, but it can also simplify how the hybrid workplace operates.
When you switch to a hybrid model, you face a host of new responsibilities. Here is how a hybrid workplace management software can help you with some of them:
1. Managing work preferences: Employees can choose their preferred day, time, and work location. They can align their schedules with their teammates and colleagues.
2. Team scheduling: Managers can decide who will come to the office on which days. Then, they can assign their team’s shifts.
3. End-to-end workspace management: Managing the office space in a hybrid workplace can be tricky. You have to account for your employees’ timings and work requirements. And most importantly, you must take physical distancing measures.
Here are some ways management software can help you:
- Floor planning: Create interactive floor plans depicting the number of desks, location, and availability.
- Desk booking: Provide managers with a way to allocate desks to on-site employees, considering their flexible schedules.
- Meeting room booking: Reserve conference rooms for teams as and when required.
4. Monitor Employee and Visitor Access: Monitor all employees and visitors entering the office through digital access management tools like QR codes.
Working from home and flexible schedules have become the norm. You should no longer think if you should go hybrid or not. Instead, focus on making the best of the hybrid workplace and futureproof your company for the years to come.
Remember, keeping a positive outlook and taking proactive measures is the only way to combat the Covid challenges. So learn from your setbacks and keep moving forward. Only then can you can sustain your hybrid workplace and ensure business success.
WorkInSync is a leading hybrid workplace solution that includes a bunch of features like desk booking, meeting room management, employee scheduling, and much more. You can opt for a demo to understand how the app can help you.