They say, the biggest transformations happen in hard times and the COVID
pandemic has definitely forced everyone to irrevocable change. From ordinary
people to giant companies - everyone had to transform.
In order to save their businesses and workplaces, many companies have had to
adapt the workflow to something relevantly new – a hybrid work model. It has
always been believed that employees are more productive when they work in the
office than at home and that is why this model has never been something that you can call a “standard practice” even for big companies. Many surveys report that most people show better results when they are forced or controlled as this behavior pattern has been instilled in us since our school days. But the new reality broke this stereotype.
Even though some IT companies had been partly practicing a hybrid work model
even before the pandemic it was not easy to implement the change when it became mandatory for everyone. For several months, both companies and employees have been working hard to get adapted to the new rules. The familiar “office worker” lifestyle turned into a “pajama” work ethic that allowed employees not to dress up for the office. Now, they can get ready for a Zoom meeting five minutes after waking up.
Over time, remote work has become a model that many companies often choose
because it has helped them stay productive in the long run. The pandemic literally
accelerated the transformation process as most of the team meetings became
virtual, thus giving new opportunities.
In short, the core essence of the hybrid working model is that the workers can
partially or completely manage their schedules and choose the place where they
want to work. Many employees prefer this model because they are allowed to be
free in organizing their work time but with one important condition - the work has to be delivered on time.
Speaking of the benefits of the hybrid working model, there are plenty of them. For employees, it gives them more flexibility and independence, and as a result, they are more productive and satisfied with their work. For companies, it gives a chance to expand the talent pool and increase revenue by saving money by not spending on travel and office space. Many studies also showed that when done correctly, the remote working model can make businesses more innovative and build a brighter future.
However, the transition process is far from easy, as it requires a lot of effort and
time to adapt to the new work environment and tools. Other difficulties that many companies can face are finding a suitable time to gather all team members
together, issues with the working schedule, business processes, provision of
equipment, and more.
It became even more difficult for many Ukrainian companies, including us,
Ragnarök Group, when the war broke out in Ukraine. Since most of the team
members lived and worked in Ukraine, our company once again faced a huge
obstacle: many people had to leave not only their cities, but the country itself to
start their life abroad, where it is safe. Currently, our employees are scattered all
over the world: from Ukraine, Netherlands, Czech Republic, Latvia, Georgia, and
Poland, to the United Kingdom, USA, and Thailand. One of the biggest issues that
we are facing right now is a time difference. For example, it is difficult to set up
the right working schedule because when the employee from Thailand starts his
work day, the rest of the team that is located in Europe is still sleeping. He has to
adapt to the working hours of the team from Ukraine to set up meetings and
discuss things. Another employee also has to adapt his lifestyle to this time zone
and he has to start his work day at 5-6 pm or even at 22 pm and stay up till 1 am. In
addition, there is a potential risk that team members who are now on other
continents may feel isolated or exhausted due to the huge time difference and
distance from others. As a company that cares about its employees, we do our best to ensure that each of them feels supported and cared for by us during this difficult time.
Even though it is not easy to manage all processes fully, remote work showed good results. Not only did workers acknowledge that they would rather work from
home/coffee/etc., but most companies’ leaders also noticed a significant
improvement in their talents’ productivity. According to several studies, 99% of
the employees that were surveyed, see the benefits of the hybrid working model.
The most important thing for them is that there’s no need to work under the
pressure anymore, and they have more time for themselves. Many workers
admitted that they like the feeling of being totally responsible for their work
schedule. However, 95% of them would like to visit the office from time to time
for activities like team building and staff parties.
So, there are pros and cons to the hybrid working model but we all have to adapt to a new reality even though it seems difficult at first. In order to manage it, we keep on supporting our team and guiding them. Plus, it turned out that most workers don’t want to return to the traditional way of working, and the hybrid model is something that they find really convenient for them.