It's crazy to think we're closing in on the seventh month of 2022. Almost a year ago Auckland was about to begin a 100 + day lockdown and we were watching as the delta variant swamped the country. It feels as if the last two years have rushed past us and that we're constantly changing and adapting to the world around us, especially in the workspace. Well, good news! Hybrid working is here and I think it's sticking round for a wee while. Despite the fact I am recruiting for positions in Wellington, I talk to candidates working remote from their lifestyle block in Kerikeri or working from home on a cold day wrapped in blankets by the fire, and of course those who are integrating back to their office in the CBD. However much I would love to be the first candidate with my own lifestyle block, I'm currently switching between working from home as well as coming into the office - something you'll hear and see people call "The Hybrid Work Model".
So what exactly is this hybrid working thing? It's exactly what you're thinking - the best of both worlds like Gus in the series Sweet Tooth or that hybrid Toyota Prius that picked you up last weekend after the rugby (better luck next time all blacks!). Hybrid working is a flexible working arrangement that gives you the ability to work from a physical office as well as remotely weather that be at home or somewhere else. This can be very case by case but in most cases it gives 2 -3 days working in office and the rest of the time working out of office. So, what do the numbers say? Is this model working you might ask? Gallup has done some research and we can see that employees who aren’t offered hybrid models are showing the following:
- significantly lower engagement
- significantly lower wellbeing
- significantly higher intent to leave
- significantly higher levels of burnout
One of the largest contributing factors to this is the commute – as a road and transport geek myself I honestly don’t mind my drive – train – walk triple combo each way especially when it’s half price public transport! But I also love the option to either sleep in and roll out of bed or by taking the extra time to get outdoors and see some daylight outside of work time. Majority of us will find our commute and job itself take up the only ten hours of daylight each day which makes the winter months a bit more depressing than they really are. Hybrid working models allow us to have that extra time back – a real work life balance and I love that. I’m seeing this model rolled out in roles such as Personal Assistant and Executive Assistant – a role that ten years ago people would never believe would work from home. Who knows what kind of roles will be working remotely or from home in 2032!
It’s the 2022 way and if you’re not already offering hybrid options you need to jump on the bandwagon as soon as you can. In one study 83% of employees said they preferred hybrid working – we’re in a candidate shortage and overseas candidates are not the answer when kiwis left right centre are leaving the country with the travel bug. If you’re not already offering options like this, have a read, do your research, give it a trial and watch what happens. For me personally, it takes away the stress of missing the train, more time with friends and whanau, I even became a cat Mum to Zeus below! The extra opportunities surrounding hybrid working are endless: an extra hour to play sport, do homework with your kids, cook and eat healthier - whatever your thing is hybrid working is the new way