Is Hybrid Here to Stay?

8th August 2022, Tara McManus

As we enter our third year living within a pandemic, it is hard to remember the days before hybrid and remote working. The traditional 9-5 office hours were thrown out the window in March 2020 as the world went into lockdown and businesses were forced to close their offices.

Now we can evaluate our previous work practices and wonder- why did we ever work that way? 

What is Hybrid Working?

Hybrid or flexible working is the distribution of either working at home or in the office for a portion of your week. There is no specific format, many organisations are open to how much time their employees spend in the office. Some companies have staff that work remotely full time and others that are based in the office. It is all dependent on the company and employees and what their needs are. 

Why hasn’t it been done before?

In 2019, CIPD described the progress of flexible working as a ‘glacier’ as companies rarely implemented it. The same study found that in 2018, working remotely or with a flexible schedule was career-damaging in the long run and looked down upon by colleagues and higher-ups. There was also never an actual need for flexible working across the board. The pandemic reset the work schedule and introduced a new way of work-life that some never knew they were missing. 

Perks of Hybrid Working 

In 2022, employees largely welcomed hybrid working as the new way of working. It cuts down on commute time, making people more well-rested in the mornings and provides an option to those with children who struggle with childcare issues. It’s also shown improvement in employees’ mental health and work-related stress. 

Employees Mental Health 

Many employees have reported that their mental health has improved since working from home. They have more spare time, with reduced commute time and the ability to spend time with family whilst working. Distributing the workload between home and the office allows more employees to explore what works best for them. Working from home can also serve those who prefer to work alone, rather than in a busy office.

Flexibility 

A hybrid model allows employees to choose what is best for themselves- not everyone has the environment at home to work efficiently and therefore might thrive better in an office. The flexibility of this model can adapt to the employee’s and employer’s needs. Open and honest discussions allow a business to make informed decisions. 

More Productive

With less time spent commuting and preparing to go to an office, workers reported being able to complete their tasks faster and more efficiently. They also said there were fewer distractions from other people in the office, including office chatter, tea and water cooler breaks and unnecessary meetings.

How to Hand in Your Notice

The Negatives of Hybrid Working 

Like most things in life, hybrid working is not universally loved! For many, hybrid working proves a challenge and disrupts the usual methods of working. Returning to the office full-time can be a sign of normality. Everyone’s lives were turned upside down when the pandemic began, so pre-pandemic routines can provide comfort!

Household

Working from the comfort of your bed might seem like a dream, but in reality, it can be a real pain. Many people don’t have the space to accommodate remote working, having to squish around a coffee table or work in a pillow fortress.

Spending all your time in the same space, unable to separate your leisure and work schedule can prove very difficult. Many people report struggling to switch off when working remotely and end up losing personal time. 

No Communication 

Whether you’re working from home or in the office, hybrid working can cause communication issues. Instead of being able to pop over and ask a question, we have to rely on the internet or phone calls. Calls can drop, the internet can be unreliable and some people don’t have all the tools necessary to complete their tasks. 

Tired

Although many reports feel refreshed from remote work, hybridity can exhaust people more. The constant change of routine can throw people off, even if it’s just a couple of days of home working. Workers have reported forgetting documents at either location, hindering their ability to work efficiently!

Unseen and Unheard

For many, perceived efforts mean a great deal, and working remotely can negate it. Some workers can feel stressed, worrying that their boss won’t recognise their hard work as they’re not in the office. On the flip side, employers have to either trust their staff to work and may implement keylogging software to monitor them. 

It is a hard tightrope to walk! Even within a hybrid model, some may feel their efforts being noticed less!

What’s the Future?

Some companies have taken back work from home days. House of Fraser decided to retract its work-from-home Fridays, stating that employees were abusing it by relaxing on social media.

Despite the negatives, the hybrid model undoubtedly offers more flexibility for employees and employees. We conducted a poll on our LinkedIn asking whether employees would reject a job offer if the company couldn’t offer hybrid working. 64% said they would not accept an offer without hybrid working, with some voters saying that “hybrid is here to stay” and that companies need to face “the painful adjustment”. 

Connectment work with in-person, hybrid and remote working positions! We can help you find a job that suits your particular needs, no matter the circumstance.

Connectment Ltd is a consultancy-based recruitment company based in the North East, operating globally. Our reputation is based on proven results, as we are dedicated to providing our clients and candidates with the best possible service. If you are interested in working with us, get in touch today.

Connectment, connecting you to success.