When the nascent COVID-19 pandemic first forced offices to send their employees home nearly a year and a half ago, the trajectory of the outbreak remained highly uncertain. Nevertheless, some hoped that within a matter of weeks, social distancing and stay-at-home orders would halt the spread of the novel coronavirus and people could return to their workplaces and life as they knew it.
Of course, things played out very differently, and with the benefit of hindsight, it’s clear that the pandemic marked a watershed moment in the history of work. Major companies like Twitter, Facebook, and Google led the way in embracing remote and hybrid work models, with some, like Facebook, going so far as to announce that they’d let their employees work from home indefinitely.
Hybrid is here to stay
Post-pandemic, 53% of large organizations plan to cut back on office space, according to a recent Cisco survey, indicating that most companies now see hybrid work as the new norm. Done right, the shift to hybrid work can be a huge boon to employee satisfaction and productivity. Still, for long-term success, companies will need to adopt innovative solutions that facilitate effective collaboration across work modes.
Despite its positive effect on both employee morale and the corporate bottom line, hybrid work has presented its own set of challenges for organizations making the switch from analog work models.
Case in point: Employees are nearly unanimous in saying that they’ve experienced frustration with video conferencing while working remotely, with 98% reporting in the Cisco survey that they can relate to the experience.
Video is essential to a more collaborative hybrid work culture, which is why companies must address any pain points they’re encountering and ensure that the virtual meeting environment supports a vibrant culture of collaboration and camaraderie.
Improving technology for smoother workspaces
Streamlined connectivity solutions can help businesses overcome their hybrid work challenges, from poor audio quality to delayed visuals in remote meetings and presentations. These solutions can range from stronger Wi-Fi networks that empower employees through connection speed and interoperability to providing adequate equipment that can support the bandwidth required for a quality video meeting experience.
High-resolution cameras and headphones with built-in microphones that discard background noise can also help transform a home office into a suitable hybrid work environment. What’s more, the savings that many companies will realize from lower real estate costs will more than pay for such technical upgrades.
The future of work is here, and it’s hybrid. Now is the time for companies to integrate the technology solutions that will make this transition a truly successful one for the entire organization.