The effects of the pandemic has meant that businesses have had to change and become more flexible, almost overnight. For many, this meant switching from working full-time in the office, to full-time at home, and now to hybrid working.
Hybrid working can offer the best of both worlds. So, in this blog we’ll look at what the benefits to the employer and employee are, how to decide which is the best day to work from home and how businesses can manage this change in working.
Benefits for employers
One of the biggest benefits of hybrid working and ‘hot desking’ is that it allows businesses to cut costs. With fewer people regularly in the office, businesses can run from smaller premises and expand their business, whilst maintaining, or increasing, their levels of staff.
Having fewer people in the office also saves on energy bills, plus petty cash for things like tea, coffee and milk, as well as office supplies.
Cloud-based software and video calling has made the transition to working from home much easier to collaborate and communicate, meaning employees can be productive and complete tasks easily at home.
Benefits for employees
Hybrid working can also give employees a better work-life balance and boost the wellbeing of employees. Days spent at home means no time-consuming commutes (which also saves money on rocketing fuel prices and public transport), and days in the office provide a social collaborative working environment.
Which is the best day to work from home?
Studies have shown that Wednesdays are the optimal day to work from home, as it provides an excellent balance and flow to your work schedule.
A survey showed that the highest number of people (30%) chose to work from home on Wednesday, compared to only 2% of people who wanted to work from home on Thursdays.
However, ultimately, deciding which is the best day to work from home depends on the nature of your business, when the busiest days are and your working style.
Key factors to consider:
There may be clear reasons why working certain days from home are better than others for your business. If you have a particular deadline to hit, or an important client meeting coming up, it could be better to work in the office so you can run through ideas and communicate quickly, without having to wait for email replies that may get lost or not picked up on busy days.
Alternatively, if you find working from home gives you the chance to concentrate without distraction, that may work better for you. Working face to face is becoming less of a necessity, as teams can work efficiently and collaboratively through video calls.
Studies have found that people are most productive on Mondays and Tuesdays, so this may impact when you decide to work from home.
It’s interesting to consider a scientific study of workplace behaviour that found people are least civil with their colleagues at the beginning of the week. They gradually became more friendly and engaging with their peers as the week goes on, though they found on Friday they were less civil than they were on Thursday – but nowhere near the levels at the start of the week. This suggests it could be best to work from home at the beginning of the week.
Traditionally, businesses have found it helpful for people to be in the office on Mondays, so they can have team meetings to plan the week ahead, or discuss any issues that may arise. However, with easy use of video calls, this has become less of a necessity.
Some people also find that working in the office on a Friday can help to wrap up tasks or meetings before the weekend arrives.
The commute can be a factor in choosing when to work from home. If you work variable hours, it makes sense to travel to the office on your longer days. Companies often have an early finish on a Friday, making working from home a better option that day.
A good working relationship is built on trust, communication and flexibility between employers and employees.
Being able to plan your days in the office to suit the needs and deadlines of that week works really well. Working from home can also help to provide added flexibility, for instance, if you have an emergency appointment you need to attend.
Your working pattern can have a strong bearing on which days would be best to work from home. In particular, working part-time will determine your availability.
Employers also need to think practically. If there is not enough space for everyone to work in the office at the same time, the ‘best’ day to work from home will have to be planned carefully and vary from person to person, to accommodate people in the office.
How to manage hybrid working
LeavePlanner can help make managing hybrid working simple, as administrators can specify employee working hours, working patterns and rotas, as well as maintaining the correct staffing levels, by managing holiday and staff absences.
For stress-free hybrid working, try our absence management software. To arrange your 30 day free trial, call 01252 636 070 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.