Putting your best foot forward: The future of hybrid working
2020 saw the rise of remote working but over the next few months, employers will be able to reopen offices and welcome employees back to the physical workplace. Without a doubt, the office space will take on a new dimension in the new hybrid working world, so we wanted to explore what steps companies can take today to ensure all employees want to experience and enjoy face-to-face collaboration and connection.
Reimagine your workspace
It’s time to brush off the office and policy cobwebs and put plans in place ahead of the long-awaited return to the office. There’s going to be some employees that are raring to go and get back into the office, and there’s going to be some who are content with working from home. As an employer embracing a new hybrid workforce, you’ve got to consider the ways you can make your employees want to come back rather than feeling like they have to. This is about reimagining the office concept for the better and rethinking how you view the workplace - including how and when it is used - and thinking about ways to make the office an inviting space.
Keeping employees in the loop
From rec rooms to coffee making facilities and shared working spaces, employees need to feel confident that the business has a handle on social distancing. They want to know how their employer plans to keep track of both staff and visitors on site at any time to meet contact tracing requirements. And they want to be able to seamlessly collaborate with colleagues no matter their location in a truly flexible way.
Simple apps can be used to sign in to the building, using contactless technology to minimise interactions. This provides a company with accurate and up to date information about every employee, visitor and contractor on site at any time. If any individual becomes ill or tests positive for Covid-19, the business has immediate access to the contact details of anyone who has been potentially exposed, allowing effective contact tracing and isolation.
In addition, the app can be used by employees to book desks in advance – with clear rules set to control capacity in every area. For example in a pod of four desks, only two can be made available at any one time \– all done electronically. Meeting spaces can be limited to specific numbers – enforcing the rule of six, for example. Showing employees that the space is safe and controlled is a great way to boost their confidence about returning to the office, especially for the first time.
Ensuring staff wellbeing
Adding health questionnaires to the sign in and out process is also a simple, effective way of keeping track of mental and physical wellbeing. It’s clear that essential Covid-19 questions such as whether someone is running a temperature or has a cough will be standard requirements within most offices for the foreseeable future. But, this facility can also be used to check an individual’s mental wellbeing, especially if they are using the app to sign in and out of work at home as well as in the office. A simple “how was your day?” when they sign out could make all the difference with showing employees you care.
In addition to checking that employees are not working excessive hours at home – something that has raised concerns over the past few months – managers can use the app to gain a better understanding of how people are coping with the changing working world.
And finally, let’s not forget that...
It’s important to keep in mind there is no one size fits all solution, no set framework for the new working environment and what will work for one organisation may require further process iterations for the next.
But what better time is there than now to consider how the office can be changed for the better? To improve morale, collaboration and productivity via a flexible culture that works for all, underpinned by innovative and adaptable technology solutions.
Ready to get started?
We’d love to share more with you about why implementing hybrid working is such an important part of our culture and discover what steps your organisation plans to put in place to welcome back your hybrid workforce. Get in touch with the team via live chat, email or give us a call - all of our details can be found here.