How to manage hybrid working
Many employers are seriously considering what “working” will look like once the government allows all office-working to resume. Some employers will make a full return to the office; some will continue working remotely and others will consider a hybrid model of work that sees employees split their time between working in an office and at home.
For those that are thinking about a hybrid approach what are the things that employers should consider?
Decide what the model should look like
There needs to be a decision about where people work when and (to some extent) how they wish to do so. This can include working at multiple sites, at clients’ premises, at home or in other suitable places. Staff may attend the workplace for part of their working week and work from home, or elsewhere, remotely for the rest of the time. Although hybrid working usually involves homeworking, it’s not the same as homeworking, where an employee works all (or almost all) of their working hours from home.
Decide whether alternative arrangements are restricted to certain roles
There are some roles which might be better suited to office working and others where staff need to be physically present in order to do their jobs. The following questions may be relevant:
- Can they carry out the main functions of their role from home?
- Do they need regular face-to-face management?
- Are they self-motivated? Can they separate their work and home lives?
- How much attendance on-site is reasonably required?
- Do they [have] a suitable remote working environment? Will they have to supervise children or look after other people during their working time?”
Flexibility of working hours
Employers will have to consider what hours they wish staff to work and what days they are expected to be in the office. Whichever option is selected it is important to make sure that contractual arrangements are agreed in advance and regular reviews of the arrangements are planned.