UAE - The future of hybrid working models will depend on various factors such as technological advancements, changes in the job market and economy, and, going forward, will require new policies. HR professionals in the UAE underline that remodelling the 9am to 5pm work pattern is imperative in changing times.
However, they also emphasise, citing a recent Gartner survey, that 76 per cent of HR leaders worldwide now believe that hybrid work also sometimes undermines employees' sense of belonging to the company's culture.
According to an earlier Poly's research, while organisations have the right technology and office design in place, most still need to implement a culture that will complement the amenities, as it takes a lot of work and intentionality.
Aws Ismail, General Manager, Marc Ellis, says, "The shift towards hybrid working models could lead to a decrease in the amount of desk space needed in an office setting. However, it is important to note that a hybrid culture's success depends on various factors, including the ability of the organisation to effectively support remote work, the preferences and needs of individual employees, and the type of work being done. To create a successful hybrid culture, it will be important for organisations to consider and address these issues carefully.
As the world of work shifts on its axis, the Poly research also emphasises "creating a new thinking, defining the main challenges and exploring emerging opportunities around hybrid working".
Requires new policies and guidelines
"It is extremely difficult to predict exactly what the future of hybrid working models will be, as it will depend on a variety of factors such as technological advancements, changes in the economy and job market. However, many companies will likely prefer to revert to having employees on-site, as we have seen with some of the biggest companies in the world, including the likes of Twitter, Google, and many more.
However, hybrid working models may continue to be a popular option for some organisations. Some possible trends that may decide this will be the availability of virtual collaboration tools and technologies to support remote work, the type of work being conducted, the need for face-to-face collaboration, and perhaps, the work-life balance," adds Ismail.
HR experts aver it is important to understand that Hybrid working models may present challenges for organisations in managing and coordinating the work of employees in different locations. "Organisations may require developing new policies and guidelines to ensure that all employees have access to the support and resources they need to be successful," he adds.
Some others reiterate that a hybrid workplace model offers employees flexibility and support that benefits organisations.
Jaya Bhatia, CEO & Founder of ExpertHubRobotics.com, System Integrator, and distributor in UAE, & the Middle East, opines, "in a hybrid workplace, workers typically enjoy more autonomy and a better work-life balance. At times we can expect a more productive, healthy, stable workforce, reducing the likelihood of staff turnover, which saves a lot of costs for employers. But on the other hand, if there are no set rules, then employers may end up experiencing poor productivity at a higher cost."
"Hybrid model for the workplace will depend on a great deal of planning, commitment from leadership, and ongoing employee communication with HR and IT teams. Without these elements, hybrid workplace models will face issues that can impact an organisation's success," she adds.
Explaining the next level of a hybrid model, she reiterates it does not only include the workplace at various locations, "but it also involves the type of workers including various age group, nationalities, gender, and the ROBOTS that are taking almost over and above 30 per cent of workspace.
"Nowadays, employees working in hybrid are also quite used to the four-day work week, as companies relay the majority of front-end customer care on Robotic chat/on-call support. This model allows employees to remain online for important tasks pre-scheduled by Robotic Assistants."
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