The events of the last year have accelerated the uptake of hybrid working – not just in South Africa, but globally.
Microsoft’s Work Trend Index shows that over 70% of workers want flexible remote work options to continue.
However, 65% are also craving more in-person time with their teams.
The solution to this dilemma is clear – hybrid working – and this is why 66% of business decision makers are considering redesigning their physical spaces to support hybrid working.
The challenges of hybrid working
However, there is more to hybrid working than reimagining physical spaces – employees need to be provided a comprehensive remote working experience so that they can remain as productive as they are when they work from the office.
In its 2020 Work Reworked report, which comprised insight from 610 South African leaders and employees in large enterprises, Microsoft highlighted five key reasons employees in a hybrid-working situation feel they are not making the most of their work day:
- Seeking approval from managers
- Unnecessary interruptions from colleagues
- Tracking down team members for ideas
- Searching for information
- Unnecessary communications
The research also found that 60% of South African managers had not effectively learned how to delegate and empower their virtual teams.
However, innovative companies that have embraced the new way of working have been significantly more successful in implementing hybrid working.
77% of South African employees from companies that were found to be innovative said their manager protects their work/life balance, as opposed to 36% in companies that are not considered innovative.
Likewise, 56% of employees at innovative companies believed it was okay to make decisions without their manager, as opposed to 35% at non-innovative South African companies.
These results just reinforce the importance of companies taking innovative solutions on board – as evidenced by 97% of surveyed leaders citing workplace innovation and flexibility as a top transformation priority.
Microsoft hybrid working solutions
Microsoft offers an extensive suite of hybrid working tools that can help you and your employees to work at peak productivity levels from anywhere and at any time.
Its “Future of Work” solutions include the following:
- Reimagine Employee Experience – products such as Viva Topics, Viva Connections, Viva Learning, and Viva Insights can make life easier for your workforce.
- Reimagine Collaboration – Microsoft 365 Business Voice turns Teams into a fully-fledged replacement for traditional telephone systems, while Microsoft 365 also helps you develop team hubs and knowledge-sharing solutions to improve work flow.
- Reimagine Simplicity – The Microsoft Teams platform makes it possible to simplify tedious processes and get in contact with fellow employees instantly.
- Reimagine Security – Microsoft Azure provides comprehensive security and compliance when it comes to your data management and processes.