There’s no denying it – hybrid work is here to stay. With the numerous benefits for employees and organizations alike, it makes sense why its presence in businesses globally is on the rise. In fact, 74% of U.S. companies either are currently using or plan to implement a permanent hybrid work model.
As advantageous as hybrid work models can be, they need to be both implemented and maintained effectively for a positive outcome. This involves creating a successful hybrid work environment. But what exactly does it take to foster one?
By taking note of these four essential tips, you can create an ideal hybrid work environment for your employees that supports their experience, performance, and retention.
1. Connect With Employees
Fostering strong connections with your employees is essential, regardless of whether they are working in person or remotely. Creating a positive work environment starts with meaningful human connections, and it is proven that this is not only motivating, but also boosts happiness and employee job satisfaction. By connecting with employees through frequent check-ins, and creating opportunities for both parties to share feedback, you can build trust within your organization. This ultimately ensures that management and employees are aligned in their values.
In a divided hybrid workforce, where employees are working from different locations on varying schedules, effectively connecting with others is a way to create cohesion. This contributes to a successful hybrid work environment where employees feel supported, resulting in better performance and decreased attrition.
2. Set Realistic Goals
Keeping employees on track is a vital part of a positive and productive work environment. By setting well-defined goals for the business, you can help provide your employees with clarity and create a sense of consistency. This is especially important in new hybrid work environments, where you will need to make workers aware of their expectations and encourage a positive employee experience. With clearly defined goals, employees are more motivated and driven. When staff have an idea of where they should be heading, they’ll be able to create their own path on how to get there.
One way to ensure that your employees are aligned with their goals is by having hybrid or in-person meetings for the goal setting process. Allow employees to suggest their ideas, insights, and visions for the short- and long-term goals of the company, and what role they will play in achieving these goals. Encourage open communication for employees to voice any concerns or challenges related to these goals.
3. Use the Right Technology
A successful hybrid workforce needs to be managed effectively, and for that, you’ll need to support your workplace with the right technology. The beauty of the hybrid model is the flexibility it provides employees, and a workplace management solution is crucial to enable this freedom. This software allows employees to book desk space as they please, and to come into the office when they want to.
Perhaps employees want to collaborate with coworkers at the office. A workplace management solution allows staff to book a meeting room. Additionally, this solution would provide your leadership with analytics to make key decisions, fuel success, and ultimately drive an ideal work environment.
4. Establish a Positive Culture
A positive work environment goes hand in hand with a positive culture. To do this, ensure that there is equity between your remote and in-person workers. Be equally as available to your remote workers by connecting with them online and providing them with the constructive feedback they need. Make time for your employees regardless of where they are.
Here are some more ways to create a positive workplace culture:
- share key values to guarantee alignment across the organization
- motivate your employees by highlighting their accomplishments
- organize social opportunities both online and in person
By establishing a positive work culture, you are creating a welcoming environment that your employees will want to be a part of for the long term. Put the wellbeing of your employees first and show them that they matter. By doing so, you’ll create a hybrid work environment that exceptionally supports your employees and provides them with the best experience.
Success Starts With You
With the right care and consideration, you can guarantee that the hybrid work environment you create is a successful one. A little time and effort can go a long way — yielding great returns for your business and keeping your employees happy.
Workplace experience encompasses an employee’s total environment at work. It begins as early as the recruiting and onboarding experience and continues for the duration of the employee’s tenure at your organization.
Workplace experience includes the physical workspace, the digital suite of tools given to an employee, and the people at the company. It incorporates the feeling of belonging to the company and the connection to the company culture as well.
A positive workplace experience is essential because it leads to highly engaged and productive employees. And when employees feel supported by their workplace setup, they can achieve their best work.
If the workplace experience is negative, your organization risks a greater churn in the employee base. Employees become less productive and potentially isolated. When physical and digital workspace fail to promote collaboration, staff experience weaker connections to the organization. There could also be friction or frustration between employees and technology, or even worse, that employees do not feel included.
Strategies to Enhance Workplace Experience
A hybrid work model has the potential to improve workplace experience. Other work models, such as remote work, offer flexibility and autonomy for employees, but little utilization of the physical space. Other risks include a weak connection to your company and challenges with the digital suite of tools.
Fully in-person work does not promote work-life balance or flexibility for employees. However, occasional on-site work improves in-person collaboration, connection to the company culture, and reduced dependency on digital tools.
Hybrid work can improve the workplace experience by:
- promoting a connection to your company culture
- providing autonomy through flexible work models
- encouraging work-life balance
- enabling innovative digital tools
In fact, according to research from Gallup, 59% of workers would prefer a hybrid work model. As of February 2022, 42% of workers were already hybrid. Ultimately, a hybrid work model has the opportunity to positively impact all aspects of workplace experience.
Rolling out a Hybrid Work Model
Using a workplace management solution to roll out a hybrid work model ensures the best workplace experience for your employees. Using these tools results in less employee stress and anxiety about entering the office. This is because employees can book their space in advance and identify who will be occupying the desks around them. Additionally, all staff in the office must declare their health before entering.
A workplace management solution can also increase connection to the physical space and company culture. It increases visibility into office policies, which promotes equity. As well, it supports employees managing their own schedule and flexibility. Employees can also foster important social connections by creating valuable in-person relationships at the office.
Most importantly, a workplace management solution is the integration between the digital and physical workspace that encompasses the workplace experience. It is part of your company’s digital suite of tools, but also encourages employees to visit the office. It further blends the physical and digital through a virtual rendering of the office space.
Measuring Workplace Experience
If you’re focused on improving workplace experience, it’s important to quantify the improvement to understand success. Measuring workplace experience can also help identify areas of improvement and provide a benchmark for success.
Firstly, leverage space analytics to understand how the physical space is being used. Metrics such as frequency of office visit and space use can indicate the connection your employees feel to the physical space. Space analytics can help identify if your office is effectively enabling collaboration, which is an important element of workplace experience as well.
Use employee pulse surveys and analyze the results to understand which employees could be at risk of a negative workplace experience. Interfere early to ensure that changes are made to support the experience.
Workplace experience is unique because there are many varying factors for each individual. When assessing the results of the survey, look for trends or feedback to identify areas of improvement. This way, you can measure the change over time and upgrade accordingly.
Why is Experience Important in the Workplace?
When employees have a positive workplace experience, they:
- feel connected to the company
- effectively utilize the physical workspace
- and are supported by a digital suite of tools to fuel their success.
By specifically enabling a workplace management solution, the workplace experience can be connected between the physical and digital realms. Understand the improvements you’ve made by validating with data and employee feedback. Create the optimal workplace experience for all by rolling out a hybrid work model.