If there were a horoscope for work, it would say all signs point to the hybrid model. This will put pressure on organizations to foster new forms of collaboration and reinvent the employee experience.
We’re already redefining the workplace. When thinking of work, we’re no longer thinking of the office, but more of “how can I set up my desk at home” and ”is it a good idea to have my working area in the bedroom?”
Foundry researched the future of work this year and, according to their results, 94% of organizations shifted to some sort of hybrid work structure due to the pandemic and this forced the creation of new, and more efficient work processes.
In other words: the world is changing, and, if organizations want to stick around, they need to adapt. It wouldn’t be wise for a company to see that all its employees are opting for a hybrid model of work and still push them to come to the office.
There needs to be some kind of adaptation, and hybrid work leaves plenty of space for that: you can still respect your employee’s needs while making 2 days of office work per week to schedule creative meetings or your usual weekly.
To better understand all these changes and what are they fueled by, we’ve gathered a list of trends that are shaping the way we work, and, in the end, we’ll talk about future workplace trends so stick around to see what’s around the corner.
Trends that are shaping the way we work
For everything that’s happening in society, there are trends. The working environment is no exception. You may think that work is work and that is influenced only by what’s happening in that specific area. Yet, the perfect example is the pandemic. Many trends that are shaping so many aspects of our lives now started from there. Thus, there is more to it:
If someone were to tell you 10 years ago that in 2022 you’ll be working 2 days from the office and 3 days from home or that you’ll be able to only work 4 days a week, you wouldn’t believe a single word.
Change is happening, whether we like it or not. And with change come new behaviours. We’re adaptable beings. Look at where we are now: hybrid working, remote working, and so on.
All these are forcing organizations and companies to make changes. If not, they will be left behind.
This comes as no news: technology is shaping the way we live and will live, and the working environment is on the list as well.
Big data, the cloud, robots, AI, collaboration platforms, full-on cloud computers, and other technologies that we don’t even know about are changing the way we live and the way we work.
Some robots are forcing us to fear for our jobs, we have access to so much information and there is so much more to come in this field.
Having online team buildings wouldn’t have been possible 10 years ago. Yet look at us now.
Today, your location doesn’t mean that much anymore. You can live wherever you like and still work for the company of your dreams.
As long as you have a stable internet connection, you have access to the same information as people who work in an office and you can stay connected with them the whole time.
This is why many people choose workations, moving to the countryside and chasing their dream of becoming a farmer while still having a full-time job.
Organizations can now remove boundaries. The world is becoming a big city. You can work with companies located on the other side of the world and have employees from around the globe.
We all speak a common language, we can make transactions, and we can see each other on video if necessary. Globalization is also fueled by technology, as it allowed us to do so much with a phone and a laptop.
Engaging employees in the company’s purpose
Millennials and Gen-Z especially want to work for companies that have objectives beyond profit. They need to feel that they are part of something bigger than numbers.
So companies need to adapt to this: they need to make sure their employees know and feel that their roles and opinions matter.
Future Workplace Trends
As we established some trends that are shaping the way we work, it’s time to look at some actual future workplace trends. Whether you’re beginning your career or you have some years behind you, you need to stay up-to-date with everything going on, as it will impact your life as well:
Remote and Hybrid Work
If an organization were to go back to on-site work, it would risk losing up to 39% of its workforce. If you translate that to money, it’s a lot.
This is why, based on the social trends we discussed above, hybrid and remote work are here to stay. Companies can deny it no longer and, instead of fighting it, they should adopt it. You can’t risk losing so many of your employees, and you can’t risk ruining your image as a company.
Employer Branding is important and if you want to be seen as a great employer, you need to adapt. Listen to your team’s wishes and find ways to make things work.
Virtual Team Building
As teams are located all over the place and as remote work allows you to get things done from anywhere, team building may seem like off the table.
Having team building is beneficial for your company and especially for your teams. Because your teams are remote, you need to come up with different ways of connecting them. There are all sorts of ideas, and to help you with that, we have a whole article dedicated to virtual team building.
Flexible Working Hours
If we don’t have to come to the office, why should we all start working at the same time? With remote working and having team members all across the globe, flexible working hours will do the trick.
You can set up an interval: everyone should log in between 8 and 11 am. This way, if someone wants to start working at 10:30, they can do that. You need to make sure people understand that they still need to work their full-time program.
Another idea is to set up some hot hours. This means that everyone should be available in that specific period. This way, you’ll help teams work smoothly, and avoid miscommunication or delays.
Managers’ roles are changing
With fewer opportunities for face-to-face interactions with their teams, managers need to be more intentional and step up their game.
They need to establish and develop healthy relationships with their team members while making sure there is a balance between personal and professional life. Organizations need to provide managers with the right tools and training, as a good manager will keep the team content and motivated.
Going online doesn’t mean we can allow lousy management. It’s now more critical than ever to have a competent and well-prepared manager.
Traditional employee experience indicators like engagement surveys and turnover metrics will have to suffer some changes. Well-being should also be taken into consideration. We’ll need to measure the current experience of overall well-being. Happy employees are employees that are productive and proactive.
You need to set up some ways to ensure your team gets the help needed when dealing with personal or professional problems.
If you’re looking for an alternative to the office or you have team members from other countries, try a Nooka. It’s a dedicated space for you to work in, it has a nice view and it allows you to offer a hybrid experience for all your employees.