After working from home for over a year now, it’s time to look ahead and begin preparations for the future way of working. Will work be office or home based? Or a hybrid method of working?
By adopting a hybrid model of working it allows the future of work to be purpose led. Individuals will still have some autonomy based on the requirements of their role and the need to collaborate and connect. In this method, there are no strict restrictions or policies imposed on employees to how and where they work in the future.
In October, Microsoft gave their annual Future of Work keynote in which they stated that due to the pandemic we are now in a new era of digitisation. Traditional objections to working remotely and flexibility have been made obsolete as the shift to remote work has shown employers that “we can trust people to do their best even when there is no one watching”.
Across the globe companies have developed innovative initiatives to tackle the new ways of working from home to balance home and work life, which you can read more about here in our reflections on the new ways of working. Now we have to determine what the future of work looks like by adapting the existing concepts we have and champion the benefits (both of office and home working) to find the balance.
This process begins with managing expectations in organisational policies. On an individual and personal level, it’s about ensuring employees have good wellbeing, avoid burnout, set firm boundaries between work and home life and have access to suitable professional development. There needs to be agile options for individuals to choose a way to work that works for them within the overarching organisation objectives to ensure all objectives on an individual, team and organisation level are met.
Our prediction is that the future of work could be a hybrid of office and home work. In our view, the future office space would be used for:
- Thorny Decision Making
- Team Building
- Relationships & Cohesion
The space may not be a traditional office space, but it might be informal meeting room or renting out a public space for collaborative work to take place. In this hybrid way of working as well as time in the office, there would be time to work at home or in a local space such as a café or co-working space.
Remote working would be ideal for tasks that require:
- Independent work
- Phone Calls
- One to One’s
- ‘All employee’ comms
This balance of home and office-based work breeds a culture and adopts behaviours that address the benefits and vices of working from home full-time throughout the pandemic.
As the vaccine roll out continues, the future of work and how we return to the office is fast approaching, so it’s important to act now. The change is happening now, our ways of working are still evolving so it’s important to keep reviewing them and remain agile. Be the change you want to see and lead by example with bold strategies that ensure personal and professional wellbeing is prioritised.
Will you adopt a hybrid method of working?