The transition to a hybrid workforce has been on the horizon for the last decade. With the rise of messaging and project management apps, it’s never been easier to work from home, a cafe, or even the park.
It’s undeniable that the COVID-19 pandemic lit a torch to the speed of the change. With many office workers mandated to work from home by the government, nationwide workforces were transitioned from office work to remote work in days.
While the change may have been forced upon us in an unprecedented way, the benefits to companies and their employees are enormous. As we’ll discover in the article, improved employee satisfaction, a reduction in costs, and the ability to hire irrespective of location, are to name but a few.
The benefits are so clear that reports show 70% of businesses are planning to move the hybrid model, with household names like Spotify and Twitter amongst the many brands that have already made the switch.
This article covers how and why your business should move to hybrid working to get the edge over your competitors in 2022.
Definition of Hybrid Working
A hybrid model of working means that your business allows employees to choose where they would like to work. This could be from home, the office, a local cafe, or a combination of locations. On top of this, a hybrid workforce also refers to a mix of full-time (i.e., permanent/under contract) employees and freelancers. For instance, a company might have employed 5 office employees and outsourced ten freelancers to work on a separate project or just pitch in whenever needed.
But it doesn’t just relate to location. Hybrid working also refers to the ability for employees to choose the hours that they work. By giving workers the freedom to determine their hours and location, hybrid working gives employees the liberty and flexibility to select the optimum time and place to encourage their best results.
A Shift From Tradition
Compared to the traditional 9 – 5 office job, the hybrid model is a massive change in attitude, which may seem daunting for managers or business owners used to the conventional way of working. It’s understandable to be concerned about whether your team will be productive if they can manage their time, and even whether you can trust them to work their hardest.
Unfortunately, these are the questions at the back of the minds of many managers. However, time and again, studies show that a hybrid model offers excellent benefits for the business and the employee.
Hybrid working is popular with companies, with many large brands adopting it early on. But what are the specific benefits for businesses, and why does it give you a competitive advantage? Read on to find out.
Increase Productivity and Efficiency
Many employers were concerned that allowing workers to work from home would reduce productivity. Understandably, managers were concerned that giving people the freedom to work from home would reduce accountability, meaning workers would not work as hard and be less productive.
However, this could not have been further from the truth.
Studies show that people allowed to choose where they work are more productive, with more than 65% of respondents stating they are “productive or very productive.”
Allowing people to work from home means that they waste less time commuting, have fewer distractions, and have a greater ability to manage their own time, utilizing the hours that are most productive for them.
Of course, this will be highly dependent on the work environment at home or other locations. If there are lots of distractions, such as children, pets, or even noisy neighbors, this could impact productivity, and it should be taken into consideration.
Improved Satisfaction and Retention
Employees who work from home or opt for a hybrid option are much happier with a better work-life balance. According to a survey conducted by Forbes, remote employees have improved their work-life balance and retention by nearly 50%.
This job satisfaction is not only good for the individual worker, but it also benefits the company, offering a competitive advantage too. A happier workforce is more efficient, loyal, productive, and more likely to stick around.
But the benefits don’t end there. Agencies that opt for a hybrid model have other mental health benefits too. Studies show that employees feel more in control of their time, can eat healthier, and get more time to spend with their family and friends. All of which boosted their health and wellbeing.
Reduce Operational Costs
Businesses that adopt a hybrid approach also benefit from saving in costs. Opting for a remote-only option would offer the most savings, with owners being able to eliminate the need for a physical location, reducing costs for rent, office supplies, utilities, and so on. However, hybrid businesses can still benefit from significant reductions in these costs.
Studies show that real estate costs are typically up to 10% of the total expenses of a business. This is a massive expenditure coming straight off your bottom line. For each home-based worker, you can save around $10,000 per year, or for those opting for a hybrid model, you can reduce the amount of space needed and significantly reduce your costs.
The money saved on operational costs can subsequently be reinvested into the growth of the business giving you a significant advantage over your competitors.
And, as mentioned above, with a hybrid workforce, companies can hire freelancers, meaning they won’t have to provide employment contracts or other employee work benefits, thus cutting operational costs.
Source the Best Talent
A significant advantage of a hybrid model is the ability to hire workers regardless of their location. This means a business can source the best talent for a specific role without sourcing from the local talent pool.
This is especially beneficial for businesses located in high-cost living locations as they are free to hire from more affordable places. It is also an advantage for companies in areas with fewer people or with a lower-skilled workforce.
Hire for Short Term or Niche Requirements
Additionally, it means that you no longer have to employ one full-time employee for an official job. And the rise of freelance platforms like Vicoland means that you can hire an expert in a particular area for a small piece of work. Vicoland makes this process cheaper, faster, and easier than ever, enabling you to fill up your team with the very best talent from around the world.
What’s more, the hybrid model enables companies to hire (or outsource) talent needed for short-term or niche technologies. This way, they decrease operational costs and can work with specialized professionals for as long as they need (i.e., as long as a project lasts).
To Sum Up
There’s no doubt that the future is a hybrid workplace. By embracing the change, companies can gain an advantage over their competitors by sourcing, or outsourcing, the best talent, reducing costs, and boosting employee morale.
If you’re moving to a hybrid model and looking to source the very best talent, visit Vicoland. We offer enterprises, agencies, and businesses teams of freelance experts to deliver enterprise-level projects.