The era of the hybrid office

Telecommuting grew in popularity during the pandemic out of necessity. And it helped limit the spread of COVID-19. But studies show that a post-pandemic, remote-only model doesn’t work all that well for many office workers — or their companies.
In fact, research suggests that telecommuting benefits employees and employers when workers spend at least 40% of their workweek in the office. Surprised?

Research shows that the 40% threshold leads to the greatest level of employee engagement. And employee engagement leads to many great things — creativity, productivity, innovation and ultimately, a more competitive and successful organization. So how does time in the office help?

One important factor is the out-of-sight-out-of-mind issue. When an employee is in the same office as their manager and the rest of their teammates, it’s easier for the manager and colleagues to see and recognize achievements and for employees to engage with not only management but their colleagues, according to Gallup. However, fewer opportunities for recognition and collaboration occur when the manager and employees are in different locations. That can leave telecommuting workers feeling undervalued and less engaged. Collaboration, of course, is easier in an office setting as well.

Another reason why a 100 percent telecommuting plan is not the best option for workers is that fully remote workers do not get the opportunity to connect with their coworkers, which can lead to feelings of isolation. It’s a fact: Human beings crave connection with others. Offices are social anchors. Employees form bonds with other employees in office break rooms, lunchrooms and at the water cooler and coffee pot. A regular dose of face time with coworkers and managers can help increase the odds that an employee’s telecommuting efforts are successful for everyone involved. Post-pandemic, many workplaces recognize the value of offering both in-office work and time to work at home. And that can mean a different look, feel and design of commercial offices to maximize the time employees spend in the office.

It can also mean different risk management practices and insurance coverage. Hybrid offices often work more in the cloud, which requires different cyber security protocols and many times, different insurance coverage. Companies working under a hybrid office model should re-evaluate their risk management practices for cloud-based work and devices that leave the office and must be kept secure.

At Accurate Protection, we’re here to help you adapt and thrive in changing times. We’re more than an insurance broker. We’re your source of accurate protection for your business.