As hybrid working continues to gather popularity, this article is the last in a series that has explored the pros and cons, how to implement it, and options for the companies that can’t.
Not all organisations may be in a position to offer hybrid working. This could be for a number of reasons. For example, staff may simply not be able to work from home in order to conduct their specific role, or the organisation has concluded through the pandemic that homeworking just doesn’t work for them. Whatever the reason, the increasing popularity of hybrid working could mean that these organisations need to consider alternative flexibility.
Be certain hybrid working isn’t an option
Before looking at alternatives, it is advisable that organisations carefully consider why they do not want to offer hybrid working and can clearly outline their reasons to staff. Employees who wish to start such an arrangement, and feel they have worked effectively from home throughout the pandemic, may be more tempted to look for alternative employment if the organisation remains dedicated to having everyone back in the office.
Other flexible working options
In the absence of hybrid working, organisations could consider other working arrangements that may offer the flexibility that staff are looking for. This could include the following:
- staggering start and finish times, letting staff come in later or finish earlier
- implement ‘flexi-time’, where staff are able to work less hours one day and make it up at a later date
- increased annual leave options, such as the option to buy or sell leave
- job sharing or part-time working options.
As we discussed in our last article on hybrid working, changes of this nature would result in a change to staff terms and conditions, meaning organisations should seek staff agreement. Employees may also ask for changes like this through a flexible working request and usual rules surrounding these will need to be followed.
Other alternatives to explore
Outside of flexible working, there are other areas that organisations may consider in order to encourage continued staff retention when hybrid working is not possible:
- implement pay rises if possible as a thankyou for their hard work during the pandemic
- consider providing bonuses
- take steps to offer increased training opportunities
- offer other workplace perks, such as vouchers, dress-down days and socials.
Listen to staff feed back
To improve morale and staff satisfaction at work, it is also a good idea to encourage them to come forward with any concerns or suggestions they may have. This could be done through an anonymous forum or box, which staff could be invited to leave messages in. As this is anonymous, they may be more likely to be honest, which may be very useful for assessing if changes are needed.