Amidst the changes brought to the world by the 2020 Covid-19 pandemic, the transitions in the workforce may have been one of the most apparent and impactful on the world we live in today. Work environments shifted largely to hybrid and remote environments, resulting in more people working from home and away from their coworkers.
Today, employers are having to do things much differently than ever before and now must decide when or if they will ever have employees returning to the office. In the meantime, they are learning how to support employees from a distance.
For employers to understand how to effectively operate in the new workplace environment, they need to understand the evolution of the hybrid workforce along with the current trends. The most effective trends that employers are using include:
- Providing equipment to help with at-home workstations
- Regular meetings and consistent communication
- HR adjustments in hiring and onboarding procedures for remote work
- Including wellness and fitness programs in benefits packages
2022 is well into its second quarter, and employers need to lean into the change and plan for hybrid and remote work as a mainstay for the foreseeable future. They also need to understand where it all started and how it has evolved. Studies show that 81% of executives believe that the hybrid work model will be the foremost working model by 2024.
With 2024 right around the corner, it’s time for employers to familiarize themselves with the hybrid work model and its history.
The Hybrid Work Model is the New Norm
In the past, hybrid work models were a rarity. Companies rarely provided much in the way of equipment and benefits that extended to hybrid workers. Now, however, the model is far more common, and employers are expected to keep their workers productive and cared for in the new hybrid environment.
In order to solidify a hybrid workforce, employers should consider extending benefits that go beyond the standard medical and dental insurances. Many on-site workforces have historically included a gym or workout area on the premises as a wellness benefit. Some companies even offered incentives for using the gym and staying fit. Hybrid workforces can now offer the same type of benefits, if not even better than ever before.
Business leaders are seeing the benefits of offering fitness and wellness programs to their hybrid workforce. Some platforms, such as Peerfit, can offer employees a chance to find gyms and workout programs in their areas as well as a space for employees to share fitness progress and help keep their peers accountable for their goals.
A quality wellness program can not only keep employees motivated and cared for, but it can allow for a new level of community that hybrid workforces need to thrive. The biggest change – and biggest rebuttal – for companies utilizing hybrid work models is finding ways to foster a sense of community that was previously thought impossible.
The emergence of digital workspaces has begun to change this notion. Softwares like Slack and Opentable are quickly becoming more and more popular and effective at giving employees a place they feel like they can openly interact with each other in productive and genuine ways.
Because hybrid work models are here to stay, employers must find ways to continue the evolution of the model, rather than hinder it. Forcing a return to the office is something that might sour the impression employees have of a given company. With more remote and hybrid opportunities than ever before, business leaders need to do all they can to stay on top of things.
The world has shifted to hybrid and remote work models in droves, meaning that employees are more confident in switching jobs than they were in the past. This means that employee retention should be a top priority for employers with a hybrid workforce.
One of the ways top business leaders are tackling this problem is by offering diverse benefit packages that meet more of the needs employees are looking for. Wellness benefits are a good place to start. Traditionally, businesses only offered medical, vision, and dental insurance to keep their employees healthy and cared for. But today, there are many ways to offer more.
Regular physical activity can often go overlooked by both employees and employers. Offering fitness benefits can not only result in keeping seasoned employees happy, but attract other talented prospects that are looking for hybrid or remote work.
Working from home can sometimes lull people into a state of stagnation. When surrounded by comfort and familiarity, people often forget to exercise regularly. Giving employees a wellness benefit that motivates them to lose weight, stay fit, or meet fitness goals can give employees a reason to stick around.
The benefits of exercise extend beyond basic health benefits. Regular exercise can also benefit mental health. When a workforce knows they are being cared for, both mentally and physically, they may be more likely to stay with their company.
The hybrid workforce is going to stick around, likely becoming permanent. With this in mind, employers need to make the necessary changes and adapt to these new work environments. Keeping employee retention in mind, employers can build on the foundation of the hybrid work model and offer employees hybrid wellness benefits that will help them to stay productive, happy, and healthy.