The pandemic necessitated the remote model for all businesses, sizes, and types. As employees return to the offices post-pandemic, there is a shift toward the hybrid model, a blend of office and remote work. A hybrid work schedule gives employees an opportunity to connect with their colleagues while affording them a flexible schedule to work independently.
The hybrid work model features several benefits for the organization and its employees, including reduced expenses, increased productivity, and high retention. At the same time, this model also features challenges as organizations need to transform their approaches to how their employees work and readjust their attitudes to align with this approach. Businesses must also engage their geographically dispersed teams while supporting them towards growth to meet the market demands.
To establish a balance in this transition, this article helps you learn how to support a hybrid work model by providing five best practices for navigating this future of work.
1 – Establish Clear Communication Channels
Organizations must appreciate the importance of establishing clear communication channels for a successful hybrid model. As employees navigate new ways of engagement with each other, having regular check-ins and feedback systems will provide valuable insights into what is working, what is not, and what needs to be improved.
Through open discussion, companies can empower employees to voice their ideas, concerns, and potential obstacles. This, in turn, will foster unity and trust within teams. Incorporating employee feedback in refining remote work policies will also demonstrate an organization’s commitment to making the hybrid model a success.
2 – Promote Collaboration & Teamwork
The remote workplace challenges teamwork efforts as it eliminates face-to-face interactions and routines. Teamwork is crucial to the success of a company embracing the hybrid model.
Therefore, encourage virtual participation and collaboration through cubicle mates, conference rooms, and break rooms to promote teamwork and collaboration. Besides boosting team cooperation, such activities will reduce conflict and unhealthy internal competition.
3 – Maintain A Healthy Work-Life Balance
A common struggle with employees in the hybrid model is the stress associated with work-life balance. Some people work more hours than they would when working from the office, neglecting their families and self-care. As such, managers should encourage their employees to set boundaries.
Setting boundaries also includes creating a dedicated work area in your home. Your space should have a desk at the correct work height, preferably 29 inches from the floor, with a good office chair. Your monitor should also be good and set to the correct eye height.
Given the challenges of separating work and personal time in a hybrid setting, self-care should be a priority. To accomplish this, consider the following practices:
- Schedule self-care activities such as meditation, exercise, or a hobby you enjoy.
- Practice mindfulness to ease anxiety from too much work.
- Take regular breaks to stretch your body.
- Maintain your social networks with friends and family to avoid feeling lonely or isolated.
- Guard your eyes by wearing eyeglasses for blue light protection.
- Eat healthy, balanced meals, given the reduced movement when working from home.
4 – Embrace Flexibility By Utilizing Technology
Embracing technology into your hybrid work schedule setup will make your work easy. Learn to use all available tools for efficient hybrid work, including time and management systems. Through time-tracking software and systems like access cards, RFID scanners, online timekeeping, and biometric readers, you will improve your time-tracking experience for your employees, especially if you are managing different shifts.
Implementing time and attendance management systems help to track and manage your employee’ working hours as they prioritize compliance and reduce timecard errors. For maximum efficiency, have a timekeeping system that records work hours, breaks, and meal periods. This way, your HR processes will be more straightforward as you can establish employee productivity, manage payroll and allow employees flexible work schedules.
Finally, to ensure your employees perform to your expectations, optimize time management with an HRIS system.
5 – Support Employee Productivity & Engagement
In a hybrid set-up, you run the risk of having disengaged employees courtesy of the following:
- Absence of regular social connection
- Reduced or no absence of feedback channels
- Lack of managerial support
- Disruption of work-life balance
Employees detached from the company will lose their sense of belonging. Therefore, as a manager, your role will be to recreate their sense of belonging by connecting them to the company with targeted engagement initiatives. These activities include keeping the communication channels open, encouraging healthy competition, public recognition of best-performing employees, regular surveys, bringing in motivational speakers, and providing new employees with mentors to introduce them to the company’s culture and expectations.
Hybrid work models are the future of work in the modern environment. Companies must be prepared to embrace the new work model as this system becomes the new norm.