Hybrid work is here to stay. It is clear that most people who apply for office-based work expect to have some remote working. This is despite the fact that there has been a lot of upheaval since the Pandemic. A recent survey by YouGov reveals that employers are increasingly seeing the benefits of remote work.
The poll compared remote work before and after the Coronavirus Pandemic. The poll asked businesses whether their employees allowed to work from home before and after the Lockdowns. This was done to understand the rise in remote work (working from home), and also the evolution of hybrid working (mixing remote and office working). 17% of the businesses polled allowed their employees to work remotely before, rising to 24% afterwards. Overall, 66% allowed employees to work remotely during the Pandemic. This number has increased to 76% after restrictions have been lifted. This indicates that hybrid work is a part of the daily practice of these businesses.
The UK workforce is seeing hybrid working in an increasing number of ways, though to different degrees. The practice has many benefits for employees, including increased productivity, better health, and a better work-life balance.
Acas, the government-funded Advisory, Conciliation, and Arbitration Service, released guidance to employers in response to the growing trend toward flexible and hybrid work. Ensure that remote staff have the same opportunities and benefits as employees in the office, such as training and team building activities.
Employers are faced with the task of making sure all members of their team are treated equally, even if they are located in different parts. Employers must also ensure that work is effective and efficient. What can employers do to ensure their team is productive and efficient despite being far from each other?
1) Invest in Tech
If employees don’t have the right equipment, they can’t work effectively at home. There are many ways to tackle this problem.
Ringfencing is a traditional method that allows employees to purchase devices from the company’s budget. This can be a problem for smaller businesses, since you need to have a plan for tech maintenance and contingency plans in case of an emergency.
- b) Grants and Investments
Companies can also apply for grants or investment programs to help them make an investment in technology provision for their employees. The Gov UK website is a good place to start looking for information about these programs. It has a database where you can search by industry, type, and company size. Sometimes it takes patience to wait for the right scheme, and not all applicants are successful.
- c) Tech Benefits Packs
Employees who work in hybrid environments, such as those where they are working from home, can benefit from tech benefits packages that allow them to stay current with the most recent devices. These can be used for both personal and company use. This means that employees will need to pay for their own insurance and maintain their equipment. The company can then use the funds for other expenses.
2) Ensure effective communication
Email is fine for small businesses. However, as your business grows, you may need additional support to enable your team to communicate effectively and complete projects. Email threads can become long and convoluted, which can lead to overloading inboxes.
Software that allows collaboration and communication can be used to create a virtual office for your company. Your team can log in at any time to leave comments on different “channels” and communicate with each other. This allows everyone to stay up-to-date with any project’s developments. It is not only useful for remote workers and hybrid workers but it also keeps projects on track during annual leave.
These programs come in a variety of formats. There are many options available, and it’s worth looking around to find the one that best suits your needs. These are just a few of the many features:
- Google Workspace
- Microsoft 365
- Promote company values
It is easy to get caught up in the details of creating a successful hybrid team. However, it is important to remember that a great workplace needs a positive culture. It is more difficult to achieve this when people work remotely or separately. Tech can support positive work culture in many ways. This could be the foundation of a blog post. Here are some ideas to get you started:
- a) Edit emails
Before you send emails, ensure that you have read all messages and collaborations on company communication platforms. This will allow you to edit your messages so they reflect the company’s values and tone.
- b) Recognize the Contribution
Credit where credit is due. Praise team members who produce work that exemplifies the workplace’s ethos. You can use recognition platforms to publicly and subtly recognize outstanding work. Some even allow you to give tangible gifts to staff.
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- c) Create Content
You can create positive relationships with your employees by filming yourself discussing company values and the most recent company news. Filming yourself conveying important information can be more effective than writing lengthy text messages or internal memos. You can also show your personality and decode yourself, which helps break down the barriers that may sometimes arise when people communicate only through technology.