Are organizations prepared for the hybrid work switch?
As COVID-19 vaccination efforts continue to gain traction globally, more organizations are moving towards a hybrid work reality. Despite the rise in new variants of the pandemic, many businesses feel that a hybrid working environment is the best way to keep their employees secured and also maintain productivity.
Initially, most organizations were forced to consider remote working when the pandemic was at its peak, but since then, with concerns that remote working may slow down productivity, some countries are allowing organizations to have their employees back working in offices.
Today, businesses around the world are developing long-term plans and working models for their employees — regardless of if they are working in-person, remotely, or a mixture of the two that has become known as the hybrid working model. The uncertainties due to the pandemic have made organizations wary that business continuity can be ensured should any future situations arise.
Regulated industries, especially banking and finance have begun recalling their employees to fully return to work in their offices — but with the flexibilities of hybrid work arrangements. The American Banker reported that Citigroup has requested employees to return to their offices at least two days per week in certain branches in the US.
Wells Fargo has also delayed plans of bringing back employees to work while Goldman Sachs will require anyone entering its offices, including employees, clients, and other visitors, to be fully vaccinated.
In the tech industry, Amazon relaxed its return-to-work plans and said it will allow corporate employees to work remotely up to two days per week. Microsoft has decided to operate with some employees on-site while others continue to contribute remotely.
Interestingly, Google expects 60% of its employees to be working on-site for a few days a week, with 20% working in new office locations and 20% working from home. Facebook’s offices are expected to open to full capacity in October, but employees who can work away from the office may request to do so. Apple has also requested employees to work in offices at least three days a week.
As such, with a hybrid workforce, organizations can be assured their employees can maintain productivity whether they are in the office or remotely situated. While the hybrid workforce does sound promising, keeping employees secured is still a concern. Organizations need to understand what is needed to secure their hybrid workers.