Going forward, many businesses are trying to implement innovative approaches to be able to cope with the rapidly changing markets and work models. Speaking of which, hybrid work models already seem to be here to stay, so if you’re still sticking stubbornly to the old model, it’s high time you rethought your strategy.
Ignoring the gig economy and remote work would be unwise for more reasons than one, which doesn’t mean all businesses need to transform their work model overnight. It’s totally fine to start small and go from there, observing the changes and listening to employee feedback.
Are You Happy With Your Working Model?
As a matter of fact, there are six solid hybrid work models that can also be observed as different phases, if you like it better that way. E.g., you may start with applying partial remote work to accommodate separate teams and move on to more advanced remote work models as time goes by and your business is getting ready.
Let’s take a look at different hybrid work models, to illustrate:
- Almost entirely on premises – limited remote work, large office space the majority of managers and workers
- Partially remote work, with flexible office space – no permanent offices; rented flex space used for periodic collaboration (but not connectivity)
- Partially remote work, multiple hubs – multiple offices with the workforce dispersed among them
- Partially remote work, large office space – the majority of managers and workers spend most, but not all, of their time at the office
- Almost entirely off premises – mostly remote work with no office space
- Multiple microhubs – management and employees are dispersed across small microhubs located in different cities (or countries, depending on the scope of your business operations)
Whichever model you choose, keep in mind that as long as you’re employing remote workers, you’ll need to take their specific situations into account. E.g., more and more people are resorting to digital nomadism, so they may either run sole proprietorships of their own or want to renounce their U.S. citizenship to avoid paying stellar taxes, so you should be ready to offer different contract types to accommodate them.
Make sure to actually research the matter to be ready for the upcoming changes of all sorts.
Are You Training Your Team Effectively?
The matter of employee training comes next. While offering flexibility is a must, it is just the prerequisite for an overall transformation of your business. Think in these terms: managing happy remote teams won’t help your business if communication is lacking, and that’s just the first thing to consider.
That’s why it is paramount to offer innovative eLearning tools, keeping in mind employee preferences. There are really so many different methods to employ — from AR learning to gamification — that every business should be able to find the optimum measure.
However, another matter is closely linked to this one: offering up-to-date tech.
Technology is advancing rapidly, in fact, much faster than people and businesses are able to keep up with, so it is essential to keep track of the developments and update your apps and tools regularly.
Trends are also indicative; presently, the following is the norm:
- IoT for asset management
- Cloud-based software for remote work
- Artificial intelligence for business automation
- Inventory management software for supply chains
Can You Make It Easier for Frontline Workers?
Frontline workers are in dire need of help, that is to say — better management and advanced tools. The latest pandemic has made it clear that this category of workers is the most vulnerable and also the most dissatisfied.
While it is true that frontline workers rarely have the privilege to have access to modern apps and tools like, e.g., remote workers do, it doesn’t mean that nothing can be done to rectify the situation and make their work more enjoyable.
For example, every business can (and should!) use a clocking app, so that, at the very least, manual tasks shouldn’t be cumbersome for your frontline workers.
Next on, reconsider frontline team management. The majority of managers, sadly, lack real experience in the field so they don’t have the expertise needed to understand the needs of frontline teams. Make sure to address this issue by changing the approach when training your managers and set up an anonymous feedback system so that they are up to date with employees’ needs.
Are You Consistently Supporting Green Initiatives?
Lastly, keeping up with the trends means that you should pay attention to green initiatives. More and more people are looking into sustainable options, so even establishing a sustainability team may not be a bad idea.
You can start small here, too. I.e., offering EV charging stations may not be as expensive as transforming your entire business rashly.
As you can see, there are various issues to tackle in order to make your business more operational but also a happier place for everyone involved.
Starting small is the keyword here as big initiatives need proper time management in order to be truly successful. Take your time, listen to employee feedback and grow with your workforce!