The world is finally opening up after two major waves of COVID-19 outbreaks and vaccine rollouts. Employee preferences have changed about how they work. According to Accenture’s Future of Work Study 2021, 83% of employees favor a hybrid Workplace, which combines the best of both onsite and remote worlds. This isn’t the only shift that has occurred at work.
Canva has released the bridging The Hybrid Workforce Divide report. This report was compiled from 1,000 employees. It revealed some interesting insights about the shifting work environments post-pandemic, and how organizations should deal with them.
Here are some key insights from the study.
Hybrid Work May Pose Challenges in Fostering Participation
Traditional work models considered working at home and remotely as the norm. This is changing. The study found that 21% of employees plan to continue working entirely remotely and 38% will work in a hybrid setting. This means that less than half of the employees (41%) will work entirely onsite.
This shift in work culture offers workers the opportunity to choose their work environment to be more productive. However, it poses significant challenges for employees in terms of fostering inclusion and participation. A study revealed that more than three-quarters of respondents (78%) believed that it was difficult to encourage participation and inclusion between onsite and remote employees. This means that new technologies and processes are needed to make hybrid work successful.
New Collaboration Tools May Be Needed
Most organizations were able to move their communication online during the pandemic. This was possible through instant messaging, video calling, emails, and platforms like Zoom and Slack. Although there was a lot of technology and tools available, more than three-quarters of employees (77%) felt that collaboration was harder during the pandemic. A further 84% of employees stated that they require better technology to collaborate in virtual workplaces.
Collaboration is difficult in a hybrid workplace because it requires seamless communication between workers working at home and those who work onsite. Software and tools that facilitate collaboration and creation are needed. Collaboration tools must be intuitive. For example, around 45% of respondents stated that they have difficulty using presentation software. This reduces the overall productivity.
Online collaboration is a core part of nearly all work today. Employees need tools to promote creativity, facilitate collaboration, and bring people together.
New Tools Are Needed To Foster Creativity and Engagement
A staggering 85% of respondents stated that they require new software to engage the audience and encourage creativity in order to make remote work more successful. Many people prefer presentations to communicate this message. In a digital world, interactivity and visual communication are common, slides can be tedious.
Canva’s study found that 89% of employees multitask or are distracted by others when they are present. Checking social media (28%), completing other office-related tasks (28%), reading news (26%), or shopping online (25%) are the top distractions. About 27% of respondents even admitted to using the bathroom. 26% also said that they made a meal or snack while preparing for the presentation. These presentations were boring because of this. Most people complain that these presentations are too long (60%), contain too much information (54%), or lack inspiration (52%).
Michelle McQuaid, a psychologist, organizational change expert, and psychologist, says that one way to keep people involved is to make sure they feel connected. This can be done by asking questions or showing gratitude. The pleasure hormone, Oxytocin, is increased when we feel a joyous connection with another person. This immediately reduces anxiety and improves concentration.
Organizations Will Have To Include Everyone Equally
Hybrid work can bring people together when done well. The study revealed that the choice of working in a remote or hybrid setting is influenced by whether an individual is introverted or extroverted. Introverts were 19% more likely than extroverts to give up on returning to their physical workspace. Organizations must ensure that no one is left out of their workplaces.
Furthermore, 54% believe that working remotely makes it easier to collaborate, brainstorm, and participate in tasks and ideas. The right technology can make it easier to communicate and contribute. These benefits must be maintained by organizations as more people interact with each other.
People have different comfort levels when it comes to different communication methods. Organizations need to be aware of this fact. Some people can speak fluently, while others prefer written communication. A hybrid workplace with the right technology can increase inclusivity and give employees more options for how they communicate at work.
Processes and Technologies Are Key To Succeed in Hybrid Work
Microsoft stated that a hybrid Workplace is the next great disruption. Flexible work is here to stay. At least for a while. During the pandemic, most organizations were able to adopt remote work. They will now need to adapt to remote and onsite work. Implementing policies, processes, technologies, and processes that enable people to collaborate, participate, and engage better in work environments will be key to adapting to changing work cultures. It is possible to reap the benefits of a well-executed strategy for employee happiness, productivity, and inclusion.
Just make sure that you’ll be training your employees with the new collaboration tool. One example is SharePoint Training Course that your employees can access anytime and anywhere.