The hybrid workforce in the immediate future will essentially still be, in the main office based, but it's the frequency and mode of usage that is now rapidly evolving. It is generally accepted that organisations will still require a central head quarters but a broader solution to embrace 'home working' is underway.
It is necessary to determine the 'role' of the office in your organisation, what it needs to be as function and why.
In our research we've seen there are clearly 3 camps:
1. All back to the office - Vaccine done
2. Employee focused - asking them what they would like and try to accommodate (work from home, office 3,4,5days per week)
3. Future brands - already embracing hybrid working and technology
In a recent survey of 100 CEO's by Deloitte it found that, 26% of business leaders we're considering a reduction in office space. This is a direct result of a home working, a workforce demanding to commute less, having a better work life balance and access to technology enabling flexible working.
The pandemic has simply accelerated a movement, already driven by enhancements in technology in the workplace, towards flexible working and improving employee wellbeing.
Coworking pre-pandemic was the biggest buzz word and was the driving force behind the workplace change. Many succesful flexible office providers had already been adapting to demand by offering a variety of wellbeing facilities; such as gyms, zen dens, breakout spaces, yoga classes, all simply to re-create and improve the office experience. These spaces continue to evolve having a focus on space, collaboration and innovation and at the core a flexible unbranded workspace solution.
It is agreed that 'work near home' and 'working from home' is for some a feasible business practice and solution to the work life balance challenge. The 15min walk, cycle or drive to work is disrupting the traditional need to commute hours to work, as employee's put a greater emphasis on work life balance. 'Work from home' does of course come with it's downsides, as its seen by some as 'all work and no play' and comes with a risk of feeling isolated. it is also risks destabilising a companies culture, if teams are not able to collaborate freely.
Before making a decision about your organisations set up, it's fundamental to understand your own company culture, if you want to embrace the elements of flexible working and the potential benefits. In conclusion, technology is the enabler, collaboration in any format is essential and flexible working is here to stay.