In December 2020, Google announced that the company required employees to work from the office at least 3 days a week and the rest they are allowed to work remotely, where PwC recently announced to allow its 40,000 staff in the US to work remotely from anywhere in the country except when they are occasionally needed to be in the office for meetings, key company events, or client visits. Since then, many companies all over the world have tried to adopt this practice in their working policy. While some of the surveys told us that many staff are satisfied with the Hybrid Work which allows them to work from anywhere instead of working at the office only. Another interesting result showed that some of the staff would consider quitting their jobs if they have to go back to work at the office everyday. Consequently, many companies are facing ‘The Great Resignation’.
As you know, the key factor for employees who consider staying or quitting their jobs is no longer related to Covid-19 situation alone anymore, but it’s more related to the change of their lifestyle and their needs. Therefore, it’s a new challenge for the companies to be ready for this transition. Also they need to consider using the advanced technology for Hybrid Work model in terms of management, communications, and company engagement.
For example, National Language Processing (NLP) can be used to analyse messages from the company survey to reflect the needs of employees as well as to show the problems that need to be solved immediately. Also the results are accountable, unbiased, and accurate which the management team can use to plan for human resource strategy in terms of talent acquisition and employee retention effectively.
Humu, an AI technology company, has developed the Nudge Engine which will analyse survey information to suggest the skills and competencies that each employee or team should improve based on their needs and personal interests. Moreover, Nudge Engine has a notification system to remind employees to improve themselves in many aspects to maintain team relationships and happiness at work such as the system will nudge employees that it’s time to praise their colleagues or remind the manager to ask for opinions from their team members. And of course, the algorithm has already analysed it well enough that it should be done.
Moreover, management team should consider and prepare for the new change such as encouraging everyone to use online document or share drive in basis, considering to change the working environment from the permanent working desk to be the ‘hot desk’ by using application to book their desks when they need to come to work at the office, and reducing working space to increase the common space as you know that the employees will not show up at the office just for work anymore but to participate in seminar, join the key company events, and join the meeting which will be best done in person. Last but not least, the biggest challenge is to connect and streamline those people who work physically at the office and work remotely. In my opinion, online meetings will be continuously used as the key practice and I am sure that we will see some development of new features to enhance the Hybrid Work model in the near future.
The sign of workforce transformation of many leading companies all over the world has jumped into the Hybrid Work model. I believe that many companies in Thailand will consider and start adopting this new transition as well. Keep in mind that the business is driven by human resources. Therefore, a well prepared strategy and the use of technology are the key to help your business move forward and survive through any challenges in today’s uncertainty.