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The World Is Moving To Hybrid Workplaces (& You Should Too)

Cover Image for The World Is Moving To Hybrid Workplaces (& You Should Too)
Reid Hiatt
Reid Hiatt
Last Updated:

A few months ago, Microsoft released its new “hybrid workplace” guidelines, giving employees added workspace flexibility and even allowing them to relocate to new cities around the country. This is a monumental step taken by a tech giant trying to adjust to the constantly changing needs of its people during the ongoing pandemic.

Kathleen Hogan, Microsoft’s chief people officer, said in an official company blog that, “[Microsoft] will offer as much flexibility as possible to support individual work styles, while balancing business needs, and ensuring we live our culture.”

It’s not just Microsoft adopting a hybrid office model. Across the country and around the world, companies of all sizes are reopening their offices (or leasing newer, smaller spaces) while continuing to allow employees to work from home when they prefer.

The hybrid workplace model might have been inspired by the current pandemic, but it isn’t temporary. It’s a transition years in the making that will soon cease to be the exception, cementing itself as the rule.

What Is A Hybrid Workplace?

The hybrid workplace is a business model that combines telecommuting with “normal” office work - taking the best of each to accomplish newfound levels of productivity while lowering costs.

With a hybrid office, employees get the flexibility of working from home on days whenever they like, giving them the power to skip the morning commute or be closer to family in times of need. At the same time, it gives employees access to a dedicated office space they can take advantage of anytime they need more face-to-face collaboration with teammates or whenever a conference room is better suited for a meeting than a Zoom call.

For many employees, a hybrid workplace is the ideal scenario for finding the perfect balance of sociability and autonomy.

Why Now?

Years before COVID-19 closed our doors and locked them, remote work was trending upwards fast. In 2019, for example, a survey revealed that 99% of workers would like to work remotely, at least some of the time, over the rest of their careers.

All the Coronavirus Pandemic did was accelerate the change by taking away our options. Now, ten months into the pandemic, we’ve learned that working from home has its upsides as well as its pitfalls. Enter the hybrid workplace, with all the benefits that come with it.

Increased Productivity

With a hybrid workplace, employee productivity reaches new heights. If we’ve learned anything from the pandemic, it’s that there are tasks that get done faster and better when we do them from home and others that benefit from in-person collaboration.

A hybrid office model is the only model that allows for both to be achieved simultaneously.

Lower Costs

Sure, open concept offices complete with rock climbing walls, bottomless beer & snacks, and desk space for every employee were fun. But were they practical?

Adopting a hybrid model of work means you can make decisions on your future office space backed by data. This means less wasted space and a healthier bottom line.

Higher Employee Satisfaction

Flexible work plans are an employee’s best friend. Need to work from home to be there to let in the repair guy? Done. Need to go to the office to get some facetime with your manager? Done.

The flexibility of a hybrid workplace keeps employees happy, engaged, and proactive.

Tools To Facilitate A Move To A Hybrid Workplace

Tactic - With Tactic, your employees can schedule time in the office and book conference rooms while you manage office capacity, conduct health checks, and get detailed reporting on office usage -- all in one easy-to-use platform.

Zoom - It’s 2021. You know what Zoom is.

Lucid Whiteboard - A visual workspace combining diagramming, data visualization, and collaboration to accelerate understanding and drive innovation

Conclusion

The past 18 months might have been the longest of our lives, but if there’s one hidden gem that makes it all worth it, it’s that we have been given the power to re-tool the workplace and create offices that are optimized for productivity, longevity, and, most importantly, happiness.

The hybrid workplace is here to stay.

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