Thought Leadership

Creating A Robust And Hybrid Workforce

Hybrid work is a combination of onsite and remote work that allows extreme flexibility to the workforce. While the culture was steadily rising, the COVID-19 pandemic accelerated it to enable employees to work from home. However, businesses continue to struggle to understand the need for it and the right method to implement it.



Advantages of a hybrid workforce

   1. Employees can choose to work when they are most productive: In conventional 9-5 workdays, employees are pressured to constantly be productive, this often leads to a completely adverse effect. By adding flexibility, employees can work at hours and locations where they feel most productive. This can keep them motivated and efficient.


   2. A greater work-life balance can be achieved: A flexible work arrangement allows for maximised balance and satisfaction. This allows employees to achieve an overall greater sense of fulfilment. A hybrid workforce allows employees to therefore concentrate on work instead of disastrously juggling responsibilities.


   3. Businesses can save on costs: From utility costs to real estate costs, businesses can easily gain higher profit margins by shifting to a hybrid workforce. A McKinsey study found that real-estate costs can reduce by 30% if a flexible system is implemented.


Creating a successful hybrid culture

While implementing a hybrid workforce seems like ‘the answer’, implementing it meticulously is vital. The following are some tips on how to incorporate a flexible work culture.


   1. Arrange various options for different employees: Standardizing employee needs is fatal. While some employees thrive during remote work, others have devastatingly succumbed to remote work pressure. It is critical to offer various work options to employees. Instead of shifting some to completely remote and others to on-site, employees should be allowed to move between combinations of both to maximise motivation levels.

For example, Ford Motor allows employees to continue working from home indefinitely voluntarily and only requires attendance for limited projects.



   2. Maintain no discrimination between employees: It is common for businesses to find remote employees inferior. This is a dangerous mistake that can lead to an organizational breakdown and a drop in trust and loyalty. Opportunities and appreciation should only be based on credit and merit and not on the location of work at all. Since companies can face a lawsuit, it is recommended to implement policies that advocate equality between employees.



   3. Employee communication should be actively supported: Employee bonds and social relationships are important aspects that build employee motivation. If employee connections are weakened due to remote work, it is the employer’s responsibility to connect employees. This helps facilitate collaboration, innovation and communication. A BCG survey demonstrated that employees who maintain social connections with their colleagues report a rate of 2.5 times more productivity than before the COVID-19 pandemic and remote work. For example, companies are hosting movie nights, happy hours and virtual cooking classes to enable team building and mutual motivation.



   4. Keep appropriate infrastructure ready: Technological infrastructure that allows conferencing, scheduling and seamless communication are extremely important. Moreover, technologies that can help easily share data and collaborate are crucial too. The infrastructure can make sure that efficiency and quality of work are maintained without a communication breakdown.

For example, Zoom has developed software and hardware devices to support remote employees.


What is an example of a flexible hybrid model?

Google and Alphabet Inc CEO, Sundar Pichai, announced that Google will move to a hybrid work week. This initiative allows 20% of the staff to work from home permanently. The next 20% of the staff will be moving to new offices and the remaining 60% will be working from their current office locations. Additionally, most Google employees will spend around three days in the office and two days ‘wherever they work best.’ Sundar Pichai also went on to say, “The future of work is flexibility.”



The hybrid work model can boost a business’s standing from all aspects and is evidently the gateway to the future. However, to successfully implement a hybrid work model, it is vital to treat all employees equally. It is also important to make sure that employees are evenly productive in a hybrid model. With these factors in mind, a business is prepared to lead the future labour force effectively.