2022 and beyond | How to make your hybrid working model work for you long-term

How to make your hybrid working model work for you long-term

By Rosemary Smart, Employee Experience, ServiceNow

Before the pandemic, organisations treated hybrid working as a concept of the future – but now that the purpose of the office has changed, it’s quickly moved to the top of every board’s agenda.

There’s been many benefits to the shift for employees, both personal and professional. But using flexible work as a temporary solution is one thing; creating a strategy to make it an effective, permanent policy is another.

In this blog, we take a look at the benefits and challenges of hybrid working for business, HR, and workplace leaders – and the best ways to make it a permanent part of the future of work.

The benefits and challenges

Hybrid working offers a range of benefits, both for employees and businesses.

Firstly, stats have shown for some time that allowing employees to work in a way that suits them not only boosts productivity, but increases wellbeing, too.

Secondly, reduced commute time means employees have more time to focus on what really matters, using those extra hours gained on training and other business opportunities. At the same time, a reduction in travel cuts a business’ carbon footprint, and also reduces travel costs.

There are significant benefits for businesses beyond day-to-day operations, too. By no longer limiting yourself to a fixed pool of potential employees in one city, you’re far more likely to create more diverse teams. And that boosts not only innovation, but also financial results.

Harnessing all these benefits, however, requires a range of different considerations when creating a fully-fledged hybrid working strategy:

For workplace leaders, how do you create a work-designed approach, not a property occupancy approach? And how can you avoid a piecemeal approach that leads to a fragmented employee experience – and unsustainable working propositions?

For business leaders, what is the client impact of proposals, and how do digital and automation plans impact this? Does a shift away from the office mean businesses need to reconsider the services they provide?

And for HR leaders, does the shift to hybrid work adequately reflect and encompass the legal, regulatory, union, environmental, and cultural nuances of a business?

How to get there

Addressing all these considerations in the right way requires a targeted approach. For HR, this might include processes such as revamping new legal and policy procedures, conducting employee experience research, and outlining comprehensive concept validation.

Business leaders more generally can look to undertake specific analysis of the requirements and constraints of each individual business unit, while maximising stakeholder engagement to ensure processes work for all colleagues while meeting business needs.

Workflow technology can provide a comprehensive platform for this targeted approach and
one example of a company getting this right is Standard Chartered Bank.

With demand surging during the pandemic, they wanted to use this as a catalyst to change ways of working. Their focus on a new, sustainable, functional approach saw them use ServiceNow tools to support their hybrid working system and make it simple, and easy to adopt.

The results of this new workflow-powered system are clear. More than 46,200 colleagues are now involved in their new flex-work programme across 8 different markets; that’s 54% of the workforce. The broader campaign received 12,179 campaign clicks and drove 291,887 article reads on myHR. Overall, 3,682 enquiries have now been resolved – securing an overall satisfaction rating of 4.7. Learn more about their story.

The time for change is now

With everything that’s happened over the past eighteen months, it’s understandable that some businesses would love to just stop and let the dust settle for a moment.

The thing is, there is so much opportunity at our feet. The potential benefits of getting hybrid working right have significant impacts for our employees and our businesses. This is no time to stop and making it more permanent doesn’t need to be a massive undertaking. With the right processes and tools at hand, you have every chance of making a success of it!

Learn more on how ServiceNow can help you manage a better employee experience in the new way of working.

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