Before the global pandemic forever changed our cultural and economic landscape, many of us never gave remote or hybrid work much thought. Today, that mindset has shifted, and though many workers are returning to the workplace, they are not returning to the same office spaces they left. In an effort to accommodate the emerging preference for remote work, organizations are feeling the pressure to apply underdeveloped solutions that ultimately do more harm than good.
Navigating significant culture changes and implementing new technologies isn’t easy. To undergo a successful transformation to hybrid work, leadership must cater not only to the external customers who engage with their services but also to the internal customer — their employees and shareholders.
Solution delivery specialists give companies the tools and the guidance needed to address the needs of the internal customer and effectively adopt a hybrid work model without losing productivity or the ability to deliver on key objectives.
The Future Is Flexible
Hybrid and flexible work models aren’t going anywhere. Companies that want to maintain resilience during unprecedented change must adjust to meet the growing needs of the modern worker. In a survey of 140,000 U.S. employees, Gallup found that of the 60% of employees who worked in-office before the pandemic, only 9% expressed wanting to return to the office full-time in 2022.
So what does this mean for organizations who don’t want to offer remote work? According to that same survey by Gallup, 54% of fully-remote workers and 38% of hybrid workers said they would look for a new job if remote work were no longer an option. And during a time when job hunters have more bargaining power than ever before, and a potential recession looms on the horizon, the thought of losing a pool of talent is a big gamble many aren’t willing to take.
Between developing inbound recruiting campaigns, interviewing multiple candidates, and lengthy onboarding processes, recruiting new employees isn’t only time consuming from a productivity standpoint — it can severely affect a company’s bottom line, too.
One Size Doesn’t & Shouldn’t Fit All
When lockdowns forced workers home, companies found themselves rushing to implement new work-from-home policies to keep operations running — policies that were never meant to last. Now that some of those same companies are attempting to bring employees back to the office, many realize the practices developed to carry them through the height of the pandemic aren’t practical for long-term growth.
Companies wondering if they’re carrying over policies that won’t work for hybrid models in the long term should keep an eye out for these signs:
- The schedule of when employees go into the office is dictated by leadership rather than the individuals themselves and their managers.
- There are not enough opportunities for fully-remote and hybrid teams to interact casually and build meaningful relationships.
- The company is still using work-from-home best practices implemented during the lockdown.
- Individual performance is based on visibility rather than outcomes.
- Video calls have been reduced, and text-based communications are limiting opportunities for in-office and remote individuals to collaborate.
Often when making major decisions, the external customer is, rightfully, top of mind. But this can come at the expense of the internal customer, especially when switching operating models. Rather than risk losing internal customers and repelling potential recruits by sticking to outdated work models, organizations need to appeal to workers in a profound, supportive, and effective way. By treating the transition to a hybrid model as a dedicated way of working rather than just a company bonus, organizations can better align themselves with the desires of current and future employees.
Maintain Productivity with Solution Delivery
When adopting a flexible work model, solution delivery can help an organization maintain productivity while it makes considerable changes to its processes, policies, and systems. Solution delivery addresses complex issues by clearly defining goals, identifying pain points, and understanding individual and team needs.
By identifying potential obstacles and clearly defining the advantages of a transformation from the start, leadership can more accurately gauge the success of the transition. Though every company’s circumstances will vary, here are a few of the most common pitfalls and benefits an organization may encounter when reimagining the workplace:
- Lack of rapport between employees
- Reduced leadership visibility
- Synchronization issues such as time zone differences
- Increased opportunities for miscommunication
- Diminished company culture and team camaraderie
- Access to a bigger talent pool by expanding hiring outside of the headquartered region
- Increase in employee productivity and performance
- Increase in employee wellness and mental health
- Lower operational costs of maintaining a full office
- Improved trust between employees and leadership
For companies navigating the logistics of a significant transformation, solution delivery specialists can guide them towards success by addressing needs on a more granular level. From agile transformations that foster collaboration to creating in-depth training guides that give teams a detailed resource to turn to, solution delivery develops highly customized plans that are unique to the company and its teams.
Hybrid Work: Make It Work for Your Company
The future of the workplace will continue to evolve. If you want to be a pioneer in successfully adopting a new work model, it’s not enough to simply apply a boilerplate panacea and hope it works for your company. The solution delivery specialists at SEI can develop a roadmap to guide you through the transition to hybrid work without losing sight of project delivery.
We collaborate closely with everyone from stakeholders to front-facing staff to understand your organization from the inside out. From there, we develop customized programs and provide end-user training for company-wide alignment — the result is a balanced team and improved operational processes.
Own the implementation of a new operational model and reap the full benefits hybrid work can offer by reaching out to SEI today.