Working remotely and working in the office both have their pros and cons. For example, remote work spares employees from stressful commutes. However, virtual meetings can never fulfill their social needs like congregating in one physical space ever could.
Thankfully, companies can now maximize the benefits of working in and out of the office by implementing hybrid work setups. The question is, what should business owners like yourself include in your hybrid work policy to make it work for your company? Here are the top items that you must consider:
You need to specify the equipment required to fulfill every job role. To work remotely, for instance, employees must have reliable internet access at home, at a coworking space, or wherever they choose to work. If they don't have reliable internet access outside the office, you can provide them with pocket Wi-Fi devices or an allowance for a home internet connection.
If you let staff members use their personal devices, you'll want to compartmentalize these when possible. To secure company data, you must create a professional user account that's separate from the employee's personal account. The professional account is for handling everything work-related — and IT admins can monitor, maintain, suspend, or delete it without ever affecting the personal account.
If your business subscribes to Microsoft Windows 365, then you can simplify IT resource provisioning by providing your employees with Cloud PCs. It's like giving laptops that are complete with operating systems, apps, and settings, except that those laptops are in software form and accessed from the cloud to any device. We repeat: that's any device. Since resources, such as processing power, memory, and storage are provided by Microsoft cloud, a Cloud PC is not limited by the physical device it is being streamed onto. In fact, you can allocate more resources to a Cloud PC for users who need the extra oomph, such as structural engineers.
Last, you should also specify who handles the upkeep and maintenance of the equipment. For example, if a company-issued laptop breaks while a remote worker is using it, is it that employee's responsibility to fix it, or is the responsibility yours? And should you provide a backup laptop while repairs are being made?
You must set rules for determining who can work remotely sometimes or all the time. To do this, you must first take into account each job role and its responsibilities. Certain positions, like those that require the use of on-premises equipment, are not well-suited for remote work.
You'll also want to consider each employee's performance and tenure. An employee who has consistently delivered high-quality work and has been with the company for a while can be given remote work privileges as a reward.
Team dynamics and social needs
How much time a team spends in the office, in virtual meetings, or apart will depend on how members want to go about achieving team goals. Perhaps working in the office on Mondays and Tuesdays and working remotely for the rest of the workweek would be best for them. Or perhaps jobs are so individualized and require little teamwork that bi-weekly virtual meetings and monthly office gatherings would be enough.
Beyond team dynamics, you must also consider that staff members are human beings with social needs. Compared to virtual meetings, face-to-face interactions give us more communication cues, such as proximity, posture, and gestures. Since we empathize and understand one another better with more complete communication, encountering co-workers in the office is a far richer and more genuine human experience.
And, in the context of working in a company (pun intended), it's easier to gain a sense of belonging and shared purpose when people are literally closer to one another. Therefore, instead of just letting people go about their separate ways and put their noses to the grindstone when they come into the office, occasionally incorporate social activities like team lunches or a quick foosball tournament.
Let our IT experts at SpectrumWise take care of the IT side of things when you implement your hybrid work policy. To learn more, drop us a line today.