Will You Require Employees To Return To The Office?

COVID-19 has taken its toll on the workplace. Many businesses shifted to a work-from-home model completely or a hybrid model. There were businesses that said they were going to keep this model of work for the foreseeable future.

With COVID-19 vaccines being readily now, these organizations and many others are shifting gears. They’re now thinking about bringing their workforce back to the office full-time.

This is causing major issues for business owners and employees. Employees, many for the first time, got to experience the freedom and benefits of working remotely. Remote employees skip the commute (26.6 minutes each way), reduced costs for lunch, the ability to stay at their home, better work-life balance, and more.

Employers fear their employees may not be as productive as they make it sound. They also fear their company is not as connected because they are not all working from the same office. This can create a sense of disconnect.

What will you choose for your employees? Today, we’re going to look at the pros and cons of having a remote workforce.

Cons Of Remote Work

  • Employees may feel isolated
  • Motivational challenges
  • Challenge to unplug from work
  • Increased virtual meetings
  • Decreased cybersecurity

Pros Of Remote Work

  • Increased productivity
  • Increased physical health
  • Reduced overhead in physical buildings
  • Can work from anywhere
  • Work longer hours without noticing

Where Do We Go From Here?

COVID-19 helped many employees experience the joy and freedom of working from home. The thought of returning to the office scares many. For some, it is a depressing idea.

Employees have enjoyed the non-existent commute times, healthier lifestyle, time with family, and not feeling overly watched.

Employers have struggled with the idea of a workforce they cannot see. They believe a butt in the seat is a butt doing a job. They also believe communication and employee connection are dissolving rapidly.

I’m not sure where we go from here. The challenge is going to be real for employees and employers. Employers will face the struggle of getting employees back in the office, even when using safety measures such as perspex cut to size to separate booths, for example, especially the ones who enjoyed working from home. Employees are going to struggle with the return to a physical office and the lack of freedom they experienced.

There is one thought that could be done if you’re thinking of making your employees return to the office.

Consider a hybrid model of work from home.

What is a hybrid work from home model?

The hybrid work from home model is an interesting idea. It isn’t completely in the office. It also isn’t completely a work from home model.

With the hybrid model, employees have the opportunity to return to the office for part of their workweek. The other part of their week can be done remotely.

This may look like the following schedule:

  • Monday – Employee comes to the office
  • Tuesday – Employee works from home
  • Wednesday – Employee comes to the office
  • Thursday – Employee works from home
  • Friday – Employee has the choice of working from home or in the office

The hybrid schedule allows employees to enjoy the benefits of working from home and in the office. They will have the connection points when they’re in the office. They will have the benefits of working from home on other days.

There are plenty of things to think about as businesses are returning to the office or continue the work from home trend. I encourage you to consider models that have not been normal in the past. You may discover something great as your employees want a flexible working environment.

Will you require employees to return to the office? The choice is yours.

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