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When & How: Look Beyond Where in Your Hybrid Working Strategy

Screenshot 2021-02-08 at 09.22.16 Lukáš Foglar | October 05, 2021, 4-min. read
Look beyond your hybrid working strategy

The great reshuffle that brought remote working - once desired benefit - to the masses, led us to believe that the end of office culture was upon us. With growing concerns over telework sustainability, businesses started realizing that the ideal operating model might rely on a well-balanced mix of office & remote-based work at the end - and that the ideal ratio might be dependent on much more than just the business vertical and company culture. 

After a prolonged trial and error period, we could see multiple hybrid model permutations proliferating. While many businesses have been focusing on Where, a very few have stopped to think about the flexibility in terms of When & How. Looking beyond the pandemic, here are a few reasons why embracing this conversation should be on every leader’s agenda now: 

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The essence of work itself is shifting 

Long gone is the industrial age, and with it should be related working practices. With extensive digitization, automation as well as the uptake and adoption of artificial intelligence, the real value of human work is no longer dictated by input (like hours worked) but rather by the outcome (the why behind the desired output). 

To be able to respond to rapid market developments, shifting customer demand, as well as to unforeseen challenges, companies have already been shifting their operating models in numerous ways to become more flexible and adaptable. But true agility, the inseparable twin of innovation, will require leaders to break up the hierarchical command systems, dropping the deeply rooted presenteeism cultures. 

Millennials, the purpose-led generation

Younger generations, that are joining the workforce now, have grown up in a technology-led world. Quite logically, they cannot understand these communication silos, nor the traditional boundaries between personal life and work. 

Regardless of how many people call them lazy, entitled, or worse, due to their lived experiences, millennials also bring a fresh perspective to the workplace. A perspective of purpose and meaning, adding yet another question to the trinity of Where, When & How. Why. 

Millenials | The purpose-led generation

Simply put, the pandemic has highlighted the things employees value the most. As a result, many focus on finding a better work-life balance, seeking much higher flexibility, even if it means sacrificing some of their income. 

The pool of talent has no longer borders 

When work is no longer place-bound, an untapped pool of global talent opens to businesses. With workers being scattered across time zones, working hours naturally shift outside the traditional 9-to-5 schedule, giving way to alternative working arrangements. 

However, this can put a lot of strain on employees, requiring leaders not only to embrace tools & processes for greater asynchronicity but also to observe the right to disconnect. 

The takeaway is clear: The future of work is fueled by technology 

Scattered workforce and asynchronous work will require businesses to once again rethink their technological landscape. While video calling apps served their purpose as an essential instrument after the pandemic outbreak, successful asynchronous work strategies will focus on end-to-end employee experience, providing people with simple tools to communicate, collaborate, and stay on top of their work, productivity & performance.

Consumer technology has shown people how useful and easy it can be. Also, younger generations grew up with digital tools, and are accustomed to their simplicity. This means they know there are better and faster ways of doing things - usability and usefulness should therefore stand at the very core of your employee software toolkit.

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