Working from home has helped many staff achieve a better work- life balance and improve their wellbeing while maintaining, or even increasing, productivity. As a result, we are hearing that many are reluctant to go back to five days a week in the office. Yet the news frequently includes news of another well-known company telling employees that they are expected back in the office.
Despite the many benefits of working from home, as the Financial Times put it, “There is no substitute for face-to-face interaction—for understanding how to complete tasks but also for absorbing a company’s way of doing things.”1 And there are many benefits to the employee too, including avoiding the “burnout” some have suffered due to a combination of emotional, physical and mental exhaustion and the absence of a dividing line between work and home.
56% – Over half of those that have worked from home at some point will consider looking for a new employer if denied remote or hybrid work options in the future.3
But forcing employees to go back to the office is fraught with problems. According to a recent Verizon/Morning Consult survey, over half of those that have worked from home at some point will consider looking for a new employer if denied remote or hybrid work options in the future.2 The reality is that, for most companies, the best option is a hybrid model that gives employees flexibility while still using shared spaces. This model can help realize the benefits of face-to-face interaction, improve productivity and problem solving, and retain existing employees.
The hybrid work model has great promise, but for it to be a success, businesses must transform their workplaces. Offices and other shared spaces must be turned into purposeful spaces that employees want to visit—whether daily or just occasionally, provide enjoyable and productive experiences and integrate remote workers seamlessly and thoroughly.
To help you do this, we’ve developed the SMART framework: Safe, Merged, Responsive, Automated and Thrifty. Read on for some examples of how this framework can help you make a success of hybrid working.
Make SMART decisions today, benefit now and in the future
Successfully embracing the future of work will be critical to attracting the best new talent, retaining valued staff and building competitive advantage. It could also make your business more resilient and adaptable to deal with future crises and seize future opportunities.
The ideas on the previous page are just a small selection from our new report, The hybrid workplace for the hybrid workforce. The advice it contains could help you adapt your workplaces for the hybrid model and get ahead of the curve. Read it now >
1 Financial Times, Bosses should persuade staff back to the office, June 2021
2 Verizon and Morning Consult, Look Forward, March 2021, those with no opinions have been omitted
3 Verizon and Morning Consult, Look Forward, March 2021, those with no opinions have been omitted
4 Verizon, Mobile Security Index 2021, April 2021
5 BBC, HSBC boss Noel Quinn scraps executive floor at London HQ, April 2021
6 Verizon, Moving forward sustainably, 2020