The future of work is Hybrid. You must have heard and read it several times over the last two years. This deliberation around the future workplace is not without a reason. COVID-19 has challenged the status quo and altered the concept of working, permanently.
A recent Gartner survey discovered that at least 75% of remote or hybrid employees say their expectations of working flexibly have increased. These changing employee expectations indicate that the thought to return to pre-pandemic days of working is more far-fetched than we thought!
Consequently, almost all organisations have adopted some form of hybrid—whether it’s allowing employees to work partly on-site and partly remotely or maintaining both remote and on-site teams. The question now is are we doing the hybrid model right?
Managing hybrid teams is not the same as managing a physical team. As per industry research, 72% of businesses lack a detailed hybrid work strategy. Look for these 5 signs to know you need to adjust your current strategies to ensure effective management of hybrid teams:
- 1. Your processes are not documented:
In the physical working environment, what happens when you are stuck on a task? You just walk up to the manager or senior, detail the issue, discuss, and get clarity on the next steps. This is not the same when you are working remotely. You think twice before calling or pinging someone and this leads to delays, operational inconsistencies, and reduced productivity. In such a scenario, it is a must that your processes are documented end-to-end.
Documented processes give clarity to employees on how to execute a task. As they feel empowered, employee satisfaction increases. Further, productivity doesn’t get hampered when an employee in your hybrid team is on leave.
- 2. There’s a lack of clarity in roles and responsibilities:
Even the oldest or smartest of the employees need to have role clarity. This becomes even more important in hybrid teams, where there is a high risk of employees feeling demotivated and disinterested if they don’t see a clear purpose or direction. You need to assess if your employees understand how they need to execute their day-to-day tasks, how their work is contributing to the company goals and how their work is being perceived.
Clarity on expectations and deliverables empowers employees to execute their tasks without ambiguity. A tool with a built-in RACI matrix that lists out Responsible, Accountable, Consulted and Informed against a person’s name or job role addresses the issue of lack of clarity.
- 3. Communication and Collaboration are not streamlined:
Hybrid working models come in many forms. Employees could be partly working from home and office, or some employees or teams could be completely working remotely or in-office. So, how do you ensure that employees working in these disparate models stay connected with the team and organisation’s cultural values? An open channel of communication and collaboration is a must to help on-site and remote employees and teams to meet, brainstorm and work together on projects.
- 4. Information is not easily accessible to employees:
Are your employees clueless about where to look to access important information or historical data? Do they need to send out multiple emails asking other employees/teams to gather relevant data? The absence of a single source of truth/centralised repository of data not only impacts productivity and efficiency but also hurts employee morale. For the hybrid teams to work seamlessly and ensure consistency in work, it is important to have a centralised repository of data.
- 5. Access controls are not defined:
While it is important to have readily available data, it is equally important that data should be accessible only to the relevant people. For data security and confidentiality, robust security permissions need to be put in place. There should be clear guidelines on who can view, edit, approve, or create data based on the employee role.
Leading Effective Hybrid Teams
To fully embrace the flexibility of a hybrid work environment, it is important to provide employees with the right tools and technology that enable collaboration, knowledge documentation and sharing. In this regard, Business Process Management (BPM) technology can prove to be a great enabler.
Choosing a cloud-based software, such as PRIME BPM can help you manage several complexities associated with the hybrid team structure. PRIME BPM has an inbuilt Standard Operating Procedure template, which enables you to easily create a step-by-step work instruction with system screenshots. This proves extremely helpful for hybrid employees to carry out their tasks autonomously and enables effective team efficiency and productivity tracking. Powerful collaboration and end-to-end process documentation are other features to support hybrid team management.
To explore the full range of hybrid team management features included in PRIME BPM, get access to PRIME BPM Premium at Zero Cost.