Although businesses are beginning to fully open back up, many are finding that employees don’t want to return to the office 5 days a week. This is leaving companies with excess office space and disrupted work schedules. Here are few popular solutions many companies are exploring.
The Hybrid Schedule
Although many people thrive while working from home, it’s not a cure-all answer to creating a more balanced work life for everyone. Many individuals missed having physical contact with co-workers, and a lot of newer first-time employees struggled with adapting to their jobs while working from home. There’s a lot to learn from more experienced co-workers in an office setting that can’t be observed and learned in the same manner while working from home. It’s also harder to connect on a social and personal level. From a study of over 30,000 people, the 2021 Work Trend Index is showing that the majority of employees want a mix of returning back to work while also having the flexibility of working from home sometimes. Working from home 24/7 may not be forever, but a hybrid work schedule may be inevitable. A hybrid work week can look like two days in the office and three at home or vice versa, but the options are unlimited.
Excess Office Space
- Downsizing Locations
- Alternating Desk Space
- Using Space Creatively
Many companies that are having only a few employees return to the office, either full time or on a hybrid schedule, are dealing with the problem of excess office space. Some businesses located in places with very expensive leases like California and New York City are completely closing down their physical offices or downsizing to other locations. For business staying put, it’s time to get creative with the extra office space. If employees are only doing 2-3 days in the office, they could share desk space with someone who will be present during their off days. Or perhaps closed offices could be opened for other employees to share or be converted to a studio space for creative projects.
The overall pattern of day-to-day office life is once again changing. Although things are opening up, for many, the everyday work routine will not be returning to the “normal” before 2020.
How are things changing at your agency? Are people returning to work or pushing to remain working from home? Tell us about your experience in the comments below.