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How a Hybrid Office Works

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If you’re a business owner, executive or manager, you be asking yourself, “How does a hybrid office work?” COVID-19 has a huge portion of the workforce logging in from the comfort of their homes. Others have returned to work full-time. Then there are the hybrid workers – those who divide their time between a home office and the company office.

There can be many reasons for a hybrid office. Some work needs face-to-face collaboration. Company culture calls for people to be together on occasion. Managers prefer it. Employees prefer it. Regardless of why a team is working in a hybrid model, one thing is for certain. A successful hybrid office requires some planning, finesse and strategy. Here are the cruicial areas to consider when beginning and maintaining a hybrid workforce.

a hybrid office

Schedule

How do you schedule everybody so that there’s a good workflow and plenty of space? Easy, use a scheduling software program like Shifts in the Microsoft Teams suite. It is easily accessible by all and users can make updates in the event they want to swap days in or out of the office. Of course, you could use a whiteboard, paper copies, or text messages if you prefer chaos.

hybrid office

Workstations

Who goes where? How do you figure out workstations? This one depends on the size of your workforce. If you have a large team, we recommend delegating the placement of people to each manager. If you have a small team, simply determine how many workstations you have and the maximum number of people you wish to have in the office each day. If you have employees who need to collaborate, make sure to schedule and seat them accordingly. Oh and if you need to update or add any office furniture to make this work, we know a great place to get quality items at fair prices with terrific service!

office during covid

Supplies and Equipment

About those workstations. Since the desks, chairs, tables and filing cabinets will now be shared, they need to not contain many (or any) personal effects. The bobblehead collection and cat collage needs to go home until further notice. Instead, ensure that your crew is outfitted with the appropriate computer periphals including monitors, docking stations, mice, keyboards, printers, laptop stands and more. The best way is to have one of your most productive team members sit at a workstation and tell you everything they need to really jam. It goes without saying (but we’ll say it anyway) that everything needs to be in working order and ready to go. You’ve got folks on the clock and time is money. Don’t have them stuck because they can’t login, print, use more than one monitor, etc.

Cleaning

Even when we’re not in the midst of a global pandemic, cleanliness in the workplace is a good practice. With shared cubicles, desks, chairs, and filing cabinets, there is ample opportunity for the spread of germs … any kind of germs. For most companies, it’s not feasible to have a cleaning crew come in at the end of each workday. Consider buying some supplies for each workstation such as cleaning wipes, disinfectant spray, surface cleaner and rubbing alcohol. As for larger scale cleaning, set expectations for your cleaning crew in terms of areas to hit. Also, you may want to check on the ventilation system, carpeting, restrooms and other areas that are sometimes in need of attention but often overlooked.

cleaning surfaces to avoid germs

Go To People

With part of the staf in-house and others at their home offices, ordinary challenges can become big problems. Make sure that you have some key people in the office each day. These include an IT person, someone who can make decisions and a person who is well-versed in company policy and who can provide instruction in a crisis situation. Often times, this might be the same person, but regardless – it’s expensive when something goes awry and the staff is sitting in their cubicles unable to complete any work for the company. Be prepared just as you would with a full team onsite.

hybrid office

Reception

Last but not least, you need to have a plan in place for greeting customers and visitors to your company. Make sure that if the individual who typically serves as your initial point of contact is working from home, that someone in seated in his or her area and versed on how to manage incoming deliveries, clients, visitors and others who enter the building. Empower this person by educating them on everything from how to answer the phone to what to say those who arrive in person. Also, make certain that they are aware of your company policy as it relates to COVID-19 and prepared to provide any assistance (guidance, masks, hand sanitizer, etc.) to those who come into your business.

receptionist

Of course there are more moving pieces to manage with establishing and maintaining a hybrid office. This blog post is intended to serve as a launch checklist to getting you off and running. At Office Furniture EZ, we are here to help with your space planning needs. As today’s world is a bit unpredictable, you can count on us to help you maximize your assets while keeping prices in check. If you need help setting up a workspace – whether small, medium, large or massive – we will come to you and get the ball rolling. Set up a Free Space Planning Appointment and we’ll be there!

office furniture delivery truck

 

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