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Hybrid Work Outlook for 2023 and Beyond

Companies around the world are asking their employees to return to the office, yet many are favoring a hybrid work model for 2021 and beyond. Gen Z and Millennial hybrid workers generally prefer to reject the offer. By 2030, 75% of our workforce will be comprised of two demographics. The hybrid work outlook for 2023 and beyond shows that remote work will likely remain an integral part of doing business in the future.

Consideration should be given to hybrid-working models when deciding whether or not to maintain current workplace and recruitment strategies. For this reason, we have gathered some pertinent information regarding hybrid-working models.

Importance of Flexibility for Hybrid Workers

83% of the global workforce is operating, at least to some degree, remotely. This has had a negative effect on work-life satisfaction which has declined by 4% since last year. Consequently, employees bring less energy to the office resulting in 29% trusting their company’s leaders have their best interests at heart. Hybrid workers additionally spend 8 hours per week managing commitments both within and outside of the office.

Hybrid workers require flexible working options to maintain a healthy work-life balance. 71% of hybrid workers state that they highly value flexible working opportunities. As such, employers need to understand this demand and implement suitable hybrid options for their employees in order to build a cohesive team. Having a dependable and flexible business telephone system is extremely important. A cloud-based phone system provides many features benefitting hybrid work.

Cosmopolitan recently surveyed Gen Z workers and found that 68% prioritize hybrid workplace flexibility over full-time in-person or remote work. This demonstrates the importance of mental health and personal well-being in job satisfaction, with a balance between work and personal life being key. Of the surveyed, 24% favored the former option while 21% preferred permanent remote employment.

Gen Z workers are interested in work, but they prioritize interests outside of the workplace and do not view their current job as part of their identity. Furthermore, they do not expect to stay at their current job for years into the future.

Why Third Place is Good for Hybrid Workers

Two-thirds of younger workers (Generation Z and Millennials) tend to express a preference for working from home whereas 90% of Generation Xers and Boomers have expressed such a preference. Additionally, these age groups may value being able to work at locations such as coffee shops and co-working spaces which allow for unique experiences that office settings or homes may not be able to provide. This trend has been labeled “Third Place” in terms of location and benefits.

Statistics show that Gen Z workers are twice more likely to prioritize physical meetings over virtual ones than their Boomer counterparts, with 31% expressing a preference for office settings and the other half opting for third place options. Companies should consider these statistics when exploring new office locations and implementing technology, especially if the location is close to multiple third places that employees can utilize in the course of their workday.

Importance of AI for Hybrid Work

Workers deem that it is pivotal for success to leverage technologies such as AI and automation within the next three to five years. The hybrid work outlook for 2023 shows workers training a balance between their office and home life, enabling them to set their own boundaries and find a schedule that works for them. Such an approach also allows organizations to tap into a larger talent pool since hybrid work provides access to remote employees from all over the world.

According to a report from IBM, we are now at a pivotal moment for artificial intelligence (AI) adoption and its implications on businesses and society worldwide. The global AI adoption rate has grown to 35%, representing an increase of four percentage points from the previous year. Freelancers, employees, managers, and all other professionals can benefit from using AI to help increase productivity and streamline tasks. To make the process easier, we present a list of different AI tools to incorporate into any work life.

Hybrid Workers Want Work/Life Balance

A Gallup survey of 70 million employees revealed that only 6% would like to work entirely in-office from now on, while 34% prefer a permanent role where they can work remotely. This is according to the Gallup report titled “Returning to the Office: The Current, Preferred, and Future State of Remote Work”. We can only speculate if those who are passionate about being able to work remotely for extended periods will welcome the projected nearly tripling of permanent remote workers by 2023.

Why does it matter where you work? Back in the day, when punching the clock and grumbling about your job was the norm, workers more often than not had to show up at work and put on a happy face. But in the hybrid work outlook, employees that don’t work in their ideal surroundings have a notable decrease in employee engagement, along with higher exhaustion and the urge to leave. Without being able to operate or live optimally, they are unable to perform at their peak capacity. Maybe it’s not a new problem, but in today’s new reality, workplace satisfaction plays a vital role.

Attaining a healthy work-life balance is essential for all generations: Gen X, Millennials, and Gen Z. 62% of the youngest generation (Gen Z) prioritize “a fun, positive social atmosphere at work” over their salary needs – something that resonates with Millennials too who anticipate organizations to ensure they are enabled to create this delicate equilibrium. Together, these groups recognize its importance to thrive both inside and outside of the office walls.

Time Equals Productivity

Respondents cite avoiding the commute as a main cause for wanting to stay remote or hybrid. According to the American Time Use Survey, switching over to remote work during this pandemic period, freed up an enormous 60 million hours that would usually be spent commuting from workplaces. The evidence shows that working from home has encouraged people to start their work day earlier, making use of the time they would have spent commuting. However, workers’ total paid work hours decreased and were allocated toward activities unrelated to their job.

With that newfound time, employees are putting a higher priority on other activities. Remote workers are now more deliberately carving out time for these activities each day, and here is an overview of how much their daily participation has increased:

  • Getting some extra rest. (Hours spent sleeping are up by about one hour)
  • At-home leisure activities. (Increased by more than two hours)
  • Nonmarket labor such as home upkeep, maintenance, and repairs, in addition to meal preparation, are all essential tasks that can be classified as nonmarket work. (Up by 10 out of the house and 36 minutes at home)

Hybrid Work is Here to Stay

According to a study by Owl Labs, remote and hybrid workers experience 22% more job satisfaction than those who work in-office full-time. What’s more: the same survey revealed that these individuals feel 62% more productive while working remotely — and tend to remain employed longer than their on-site colleagues.

It appears hybrid work outlook will continue, as Gen Z and millennial workers are demanding more flexibility in the workplace. Companies have noticed this shift, with many opting for hybrid work models that allow employees to work from home part-time while still having access to an office environment when needed. This not only offers hybrid workers more freedom but also enables companies to reduce overhead costs associated with office space.

In the modern world, there are no longer two kinds of employees: those who work remotely and those who come to an office. Employees can now choose how, when, and where they want to do their job – whether it is collaborating in person or honing into a project at home or while traveling from a cafe. It may be hard for employers to make this type of transition but its rewards are long-lasting; increased employee satisfaction, productivity levels that skyrocket and staff retention rates will soar! Ultimately hybrid working benefits everyone involved.

Embrace the Future

The hybrid work outlook for 2023 and beyond is strong. It is the future of work, and it’s time for employers to embrace this shift by developing hybrid-friendly policies that meet their employees’ needs. By adapting to hybrid workplace structures, companies can benefit from increased job satisfaction, productivity, and staff retention rates.

If you are searching for an all-in-one solution to keep hybrid workers happy and productive – including hybrid or remote contact center agents, you need the tools that Carolina Digital Phone provides. From call queues, time of day call routing, and robust call center analytics, you’ll find a complete suite of tools to keep your hybrid workers content no matter where they are working. Contact Carolina Digital Phone today at (336) 544-4000 to learn more!