Vaccines are being rolled out and things are looking up. With more and more Filipinos inoculated, we can expect more establishments to open, and this includes the majority of offices. Since most companies are adapting to the times, they might try a hybrid workplace setup for the first few months or permanently. What is a hybrid workplace setup anyway?
Simply put, a hybrid workplace means having a combination of in-house employees and remote workers. Some people from your team will be assigned to report to the office while some stay at home. This has a few advantages for the employers: they can resume supervising their employees while costs are cut since not everyone is there to use the office space. However, for the employee, there might be a few cons along the way.
Is your office planning to implement a hybrid workspace? Find out the pros and cons here:
Pro: You get that office environment back
After over a year of confinement in the four walls of your room, you’ll finally step foot in an office. Remember what a clean, working environment looks and feels like? Remember centralized aircon? Being in an office means no more catfight noises, no more roosters crowing, or being distracted by house chores you need to do. A hybrid workplace gives you a taste of a calm office space, a much-needed break from your cramped home.
Con: You have to haul all your stuff back and forth
Prepare your laptop bags because you’re going to carry yours everywhere from now on. And what about some employees who don’t use laptops but don’t have personal PCs? They might find it difficult to haul that back and forth. Since hybrid work means you work from home some days and at the office on other days, you’ll want to pack your important stuff and bring it with you. On one hand, you don’t have to worry about littering your desk, on the other, if you’re lazy, you’re doomed.
Pro: Actual officemates! Yay!
At long last, no more virtual officemates — for some days at least. You get to interact with them in the flesh and finally greet the newest additions to your team. Granted all you’ll probably see are their eyes, thanks to face masks but that’s okay. At least you get to rant about your job face to face instead of typing it all out and worrying about sending your messages to the wrong person. Hybrid work also eases you back into society. Are you used to being a nomad by now? Don’t worry, you don’t have to interact with everyone 5 days a week, you can do that twice or thrice a week and that’s already a great compromise.
Con: Hello, commute, my old friend
Ugh. One thing we liked about working from home is we got to say goodbye to long hours of commute and getting stuck in traffic. It’s not like all of us have cars or can afford to carpool every time we go out. Reporting to your office means you get back on the public transpo and even if let’s say by that time half of the population is inoculated, it still won’t feel safe.
Pro: It’s the best of both worlds
Can’t decide if you want to go back to working at physical office spaces? The hybrid workplace model will give you a taste of both office life and work from home. You could say it’s a great balance. Your monotonous quarantine WFH will be broken with weekly visits to your office.
Con: You need to adapt — again.
When the pandemic hit we were forced to work from home and adapt to the demands of that kind of setup. Everyone had different paces of settling in. But now that we’re all cozy in our upgraded nooks and office chairs thanks to online shopping sales, we need to adapt to yet another kind of setup. That means more rules, more team meetings to attend in the first few weeks.
Pro: Your well-being is still being prioritized
If your company decides to put its employees in a hybrid workplace model, that already means they’re prioritizing your well-being. They could’ve easily required you to report to work every day but they chose an option that could be difficult but achievable. A hybrid workspace also leaves enough room for social distancing since not everyone from the team will be there. Choosing to go hybrid also means that there’s already a level of trust from employers that their employees will deliver great work even unsupervised.
Con: Watch out for more ground rules and processes
There came a point when online WFH meetings were a pain and we simply adapted to it. We spent time working on the ground rules and processes of work from home and they weren’t easy. But enter hybrid workplace and it looks like it might be an even more confusing setup. Some of your teammates work from home, and some on-site which means meetings are a mix of physical and virtual gatherings. Your company and your team will have to sit down and discuss your process for sure.
So what do you think? Would you like to try a hybrid workplace setup?