Before the disruption of the COVID-19 pandemic, only 30% of the US workforce was working from home, even part of the time. Overnight, that number doubled as stay-at-home orders were put in place. The majority of the US workforce has been operating remotely for over a year, and as vaccines are rolled out, companies are making the tough decisions of how and where to do business going forward.
For most, they will implement a hybrid work model where employees are still able to work remotely but are also have set schedules to work at the office in person. While COVID-19 proved, on a massive scale, that working remotely doesn’t hinder productivity, executives still struggle with the decision to allow employees who want to continue working remotely long-term.
Gartner is dispelling some of the top myths associated with hybrid work in their latest report, and we are summarizing those findings below.
- Myth 1: Companies existing remote work strategy will work for a hybrid workforce. Unfortunately, most companies did not have a remote work strategy in place before the global shutdown, so policies were created overnight to complete short-term goals. A true hybrid workforce strategy however goes far beyond remote work and needs a set of business objectives to determine where, when, and by whom the work gets done.
- Myth 2: Employees are less productive outside the office. On the contrary, most employees reported higher productivity levels while working from home. In a hybrid work model, removing barriers for employees to be their most productive is key.
- Myth 3: Companies need in-person contact to sustain culture. Many leaders fear that lack of in-person contact will hurt their company culture; however, cultural values are changing. When polled, the majority of respondents cited collaboration, agility, and trust as the most important cultural values – none of which require a physical location.
- Myth 4: Hybrid workforce models hurt DEI strategy. In reality, hybrid workforce models make it easier to tap a diverse talent pool. Having a remote work policy allows organizations to recruit top talent across the globe better than traditional workforce models.