Hybrid working: What you need to know and how to get started


The new workplace must retain the best of the physical office experience and seamlessly combine it with the best of remote working. So it’s vital you consider the technology required to implement hybrid working now.

Hybrid working is all about providing your people with a seamless technology experience as they move between locations. Whether they are at home, the office or other remote locations.

We have already seen considerable investments in collaborative technologies to support remote working and productivity. So as organisations continue to react to changing business and employee behaviours, these seven trends are shaping hybrid working.

The seven trends shaping hybrid working

  • Flexible working is here to stay – 70 per cent of workers want remote work to continue, while over 65 per cent crave more in-person time with their colleagues
  • Business Leaders disconnected from employees61 per cent of leaders say they are “thriving” — 23 percentage points higher than those without decision-making authority
  • High productivity has created an exhausted workforceof surveyed employees, 1 in 5 say their employer doesn’t care about their work-life balance, with 54 per cent feeling overworked and 39 per cent exhausted
  • Younger employees need support – Generation Z, those aged 18 – 25, say they struggle in a fully remote culture
  • Isolation is reducing innovation – interactions across the organisation have diminished, being replaced with more immediate team dialogue. As a result, businesses have become siloed, and innovation stalled.
  • Work has become more human – coworkers have shared more of themselves and their personality. This more human culture enables a greater sense of well-being and authenticity, which can be translated into productivity
  • A liberated workforce  –  Remote working means talent is everywhere, liberating employment opportunities. A survey identified 46 per cent of workers are planning to move location this year because they can work remotely.

These trends demonstrate the need for an effective technology approach to support hybrid working. So now really is the time to plan your approach and how to proceed and what technology solutions should you be considering.

How will hybrid working help your organisation?

There are multiple operational areas of your organisation that will benefit hugely from a hybrid workplace model. All of which are vital considerations when moving forward into the next era of business.

Security

Keeping your data secure when accessed remotely from more locations than ever is incredibly important for your organisation’s future. Your people need to be able to find, receive and store files quickly without risk. And your customers need confidence that your business can protect their personal information.

An effective hybrid working approach will take advantage of new technology designed with these concerns in mind. Therefore technologies such as cyber-security protection software, data management and processing tools and more efficient and up to date mobile device management-as-a-service.

The cloud

We are well accustomed to working in the cloud and, as an integral part of how we do business, this isn’t going to change. Cloud technology will continue to evolve and play a crucial role in the development of the workplace.

When the office is once again part of your people’s working week, you need cloud solutions that offer the same versatility and convenience on-site as they do everywhere else. Versatile productivity tools like Microsoft Office 365, meeting room booking systems and digital document management provide fundamental first steps.

Agility

Agility is another term that’s become firmly fixed in the lexicon of business language. We’ve learned to be flexible in our working week to adapt and change as new challenges and opportunities arise.

Agility is valuable, and it will continue to be tested in the future, so hybrid working must ensure your organisation’s physical workplace is also agile. So the ability to remotely book a meeting space via a simple phone app would be a great start. Add to that the ability to include additional requests such as an interactive whiteboard, extra seating and refreshments; it’s easy to see the benefits. With workplace technologies like Ricoh Spaces, it quickly becomes a reality.

Productivity

Every business wants to make the most of everyone’s time, ensuring their people are working on the critical and most valuable projects and processes.

By looking at your hybrid working requirements now, you can make sure the return to the office is easy. Helping your people to continue to work effectively, rather than once again reinvent themselves and how they work. Great tools to consider for improved productivity are collaboration tools such as Microsoft Teams, Document Workflow Automation, Digital Invoicing and Automated Account Payable.

Remote vs in-office

A blended approach to working is a new challenge your business will need to address. And is one of the most compelling reasons to implement a hybrid working.

You probably already have video conferencing software for your people to connect online. But what if a group of those people are in a meeting room at your office? Will your current solution enable you to combine physical room devices with virtual meetings? And how do you manage their movement through the building safely and securely? Considerations such as these could be essential moving forward. Workplace technologies to consider are Smart Lockers for visitors and staff plus Meeting Room Services.

Why you should work with a collaborative Digital Services Partner

We’ve looked at how hybrid working can benefit your business and considered some of the best in class technologies involved. Next, you need to select a technology partner to support you.

Look for a single partner with extensive agreements and relationships in place with all the major IT and Cloud vendors to ensure you get the best results. Not only will this partner be able to provide tailored advice and expertise, but they can also all implement every solution.

Working with a single digital services partner takes the challenge away from your internal teams, speeds up delivery, and one single agreement covers everything. In addition, this partner will be on hand to provide ongoing support, managed services and end of life management. 

Look for a partner with credible hybrid working experience

Adopting a hybrid working approach doesn’t have to be challenging. You can take advantage of the opportunity ahead much more effectively if you work alongside a collaborative consulting partner.

As a leading digital services consulting partner, Ricoh has recently been positioned in the 2021 Gartner Magic Quadrant for Managed Workplace Services in Europe for the third year in a row. Ricoh achieved this by continually evolving how they work with technology and cloud vendors. Ensuring they implement the best technology, processes and working practices for their customers.

When surveyed this is what some of our customers said:

The overall experience with Ricoh has been excellent. We have partnered with Ricoh for our Managed Workplace Services for four years. We have found that Ricoh’s ethos of understanding our requirements as a business, and creating solutions around our current and future objectives, has allowed us to create an environment that allows our end-users to thrive.

Head Of Technology, Finance Industry

“For over five years, Ricoh has shown reliability, professionalism and flexibility in IT support. You don’t have to hire hundreds of specialists. You just need one reliable IT, support partner.”

COO, Transport Industry

Discover how Ricoh can help you Work Together, Anywhere

To plan and implement hybrid working, we recommend you start with a Digital Experience Assessment of your people. It will give you a clear picture of their working needs and how this fits with the broader business objectives. On completion, you are provided with a set of recommendations for how to proceed.

Learn more about our Digital Experience Assessments by reading this short ebook guide.

Click to read Digital Experience Assessments


Paul Ryder
Paul Ryder
paul.ryder@ricoh.co.uk

Digital Services Director

Read all articles by Paul Ryder