THE HYBRID WORK CULTURE

The Hybrid Work culture, Remote working, or Flexible working is to help both the employers, employees, as well as organizations. It provides a comfortable and healthy environment of work from home and office. It came into existence due to an outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic.

WHAT IS HYBRID WORK CULTURE?

A hybrid work model is a plan to have employees working partly from home and partly from the office. The Hybrid Work Culture is prevalent in current ongoing business across the world.

Every organization came up with some changes in work culture. It is more dominant in the IT sector than in any other sector.

Now, let us learn about how the Hybrid Work Culture came into existence, its features, merits, and demerits.

PRE-PANDEMIC PHASE

The pre-pandemic situation across the globe was as normal as ever. There was no big change in the daily life of people, offices, and businesses. The working pattern of the corporate world and other services were the same with no hint of the pandemic hitting the world.

HOW COVID-19 HAS CHANGED THE WORK CULTURE?

COVID – 19, or the Coronavirus is a transmissible virus that could spread from person to person. It was first detected in Wuhan, China in 2019. The virus created havoc in the world since its evolution. The outbreak of Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) was a disaster for the human race.

Severe implications hit the country’s economic and health systems. The economic and social life of the community worsened. It was a major setback for all industries across the globe. National and global trade got affected. New working norms like The Hybrid working culture paved the way during this period. Creating and speeding up digital platforms for ease of conducting business needed quick action.  

POST-PANDEMIC PHASE

The uncertainty and imbalance during the pandemic phase slowly came to an end. This however brought many changes in the work culture and the use of digital platforms for conducting business became an integral part of the corporate world.

The Hybrid Work Culture emerged for smooth functioning of industries and focusing on health of employees.

ONLINE WORK MODE

Online mode of working is prevalent even now in the IT industry even after the end of the pandemic. Inbound and outbound calling, BPO and backend operations where high-security requirements are not mandatory are operating in a Hybrid model.

OFFLINE WORK MODE

Offline mode of work is prevalent in other sectors like Financial Services, retail and wholesale units, trading and manufacturing, healthcare, and educational institutes.

The physical presence of employees is a must in manufacturing plants and on-site units. The flexible working model is not suitable for such sectors, as manpower absence can hamper the daily work.

ADVANTAGES OF HYBRID WORK CULTURE

  1. Employees have flexible working hours and places to work.
  2. Giving ownership to employees (employees can prioritize the tasks and work on the most important tasks).
  3. Work-life balance means working at their own pace and making the best out of it.
  4. Flexibility to work in a stress-free environment (garden/park or even a beach).
  5. Money spent on commuting is less.
  6. Meetings happen over a video call, across the oceans with the help of remote work culture.
  7. Can cater to the immediate requirements of the family if working from home.
  8. Suitable for employees who have a system-based job.
  9. Can get the best of both worlds (personal as well as professional).
  10. This tool is necessary to retain the talent of organizations.
  11. This working model is helping companies to realize their Environmental, Social, Corporate Governance (ESG) commitments.

DISADVANTAGES OF HYBRID WORK CULTURE

  1. Out of sight means out of mind, so, many employees lose some opportunities being out of site.
  2. Not suitable for employees working in a plant or on-site. Physical presence is a must to cater to the work.
  3. Working long hours can take a toll on the employee’s health.
  4. Cyber security is at risk, as working remotely could result in hacking.
  5. Less scope for interpersonal communication and improving inert personal skills. Lack of skill development.
  6. The opportunity to interact with friends is less during breaks.
  7. Employees may not be loyal to one company. They are flexible to try other opportunities for a second income.

RESEARCH & SURVEY ON HYBRID WORK CULTURE

Research says the corporate world is making the hybrid work culture a reality.

  1. 83% of the employees are willing to work from home or hybrid work arrangements.
  2. 17% of employees prefer on-site work.
  3. About 73% of the companies in India are evaluating hybrid working arrangements. According to the ‘2022 India Office Occupier Survey’ by real estate consulting CBRE.
  4. Remote working has already set a permanent mark in India’s work matrix.
  5. 36.61% of respondents shifted from leased office spaces to co-working spaces post-pandemic.
  6. 72% of business leaders’ admit that their organizations lack a detailed hybrid strategy. https://www.safeguardglobal.com/resources/blog/the-evolution-of-the-hybrid-work-model.  
  7. About 76% of employees wanted to shift to hybrid work mode in their companies.

HYBRID WORK CULTURE – FEATURES

After the outbreak of the pandemic, the work culture changed in a lot of ways.

  • The safety and health of the employees were given primary focus while designing the work model.
  • New work culture came as a relief to organizations of various sectors.
  • The strategy of work culture differed from one organization to another.
  • The hybrid work model was a global success.
  • It reduced the cost of infrastructure/real estate/office supply and operating costs.    
  • Employers could hire people remotely.
  • Customer interaction and satisfaction through online mode became the need of the hour.
  • New employees could work from office for 1 or 2 days a week.
  • It helped create robust tools and platforms for new employees.  
  • It helped fulfill the goals of the organization by increasing the productivity of work.
  • Cloud base solutions have made the hybrid model efficient.
  • Customer engagement solutions have made customer interactions easier.

IMPORTANCE OF IT SECTOR

IT (Information Technology) is the largest industry across the globe. The boom in the IT sector improved the economic development of the world. Information Technology is the backbone of any business to keep it running without hassles. The IT industry is an important contributor in building the digital economy on domestic and international platforms.

IT SECTOR DURING PANDEMIC

The IT sector saw many ups and downs during the pandemic. However, the hybrid work culture came as a blessing in disguise and ensured its smooth functioning. It still stands strong due to new innovations incorporated during the crisis.

ADVANTAGES

https://www.marketdataforecast.com/blog/impacts-of-covid19-on-information-technology-industry

  • Increase in demand for software & social media platforms like Google Meet, Zoom calls, and Microsoft teams.
  • Launch of smartphone apps to keep the employees updated about official work. 
  • Development of health apps during the crisis across the globe helped people to diagnose health, and get treated and operated.

DISADVANTAGES

https://www.pwc.com/us/en/library/covid-19/coronavirus-technology-impact.html

  • Disruption in the global supply chain and a slowdown of production was observed.
  • Recruiting process for skilled workers slowed down due to crises that can affect the future.
  • Hindrance in the company’s expansion plans due to the cancelation of tech conferences all over the world.
  • Cash low challenges were faced by undercapitalized companies.

IT SECTOR IN INDIA

India has emerged as the most preferred place for the software industry and service sector. Indian software companies are holding a prominent position in the global IT sector. Highly skilled personnel across the industry contribute their best to the growth of India’s economy.

PANDEMIC & IT MARKET IN INDIA

A significant restraint in the IT market in 2020 blocked the supply chains due to trade restrictions. Working employees faced difficulties in issues related to infrastructure, communication, and transport.

National lockdown forced employees to work from home. Adverse impact on operational capabilities were witnessed. The pandemic affected business continuity and hit the flow of the work force. 

Amidst all this, the GDP of the IT sector has had significant growth over the years. It is expected to have a positive impact on the Indian economy. IT sector in India is one among other countries that are following the norms of a Hybrid Work Culture.

GDP OF INDIA’S IT SECTOR

FUTURE OF HYBRID WORK CULTURE

This hybrid model is very agile, it can be scaled up or down according to the needs of organizations. It can be increased to 3 to 4 days a week, or only 1 day a week if the process is not in favor of the employer.

A recent survey of senior executives found that 81% of executive leaders believe hybrid work will be the foremost working model by 2024.

TOP COMPANIES VIEW ON PERMANENT HYBRID WORK CULTURE

  • Microsoft: “We view working from home part of the time (less than 50%) as now standard”
  • Ford: Employees can “continue to work from home indefinitely” as part of a “work-office hybrid”
  • Citigroup: Most employees will be “expected to be in the office only three days” post-pandemic
  • Apple: Employees will work “three days a week with the option to work remotely twice a week” 
  • American Express: Employees will work in the “office for three days each week, with two days as colleague choice days”
  • Cisco: Cisco will “roll out a hybrid working plan that has no mandates for how often employees go into the office”
  • Target: Target will “permanently offer a hybrid style of working”
  • Nike: Nike will embrace a “flexible 3/2 hybrid work approach”.

CONCLUSION

Hybrid work culture has given many industries ease to work freely. A positive work culture impacts the productivity, efficiency, and output in achieving organizational goals. However, the current scenario in the market is to see a smooth flow of work.  It carries its own merits and demerits in all aspects. The Hybrid Work culture is here to stay for years.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

How did the COVID-19 lead to Hybrid work culture?

Ans.  COVID-19 took a toll on human health globally hampering the day to day working pattern for industries. Innovative working modules like the Hybrid Work Culture were created for smooth functioning of organizations.

What is the future of Hybrid work culture?

Ans.  Hybrid work is likely to continue indefinitely. It is considered to be a flexible pattern of work and sure to give balance in personal and professional life of the employees.

What are the advantages of Hybrid work culture?

Ans. The advantages of Hybrid work culture are:

  • Work-life balance means working at their own pace and making the best out of it.
  • Flexibility to work in a stress-free environment (garden/park or even a beach).
  • Money spent on commuting is less.

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