“Hybrid Working” to Become “the Norm” Post-Covid

Working from home is likely to become more common over the coming years as firms consider cutting office costs from their budgets. According to the workspace provider IWG (formerly Regus), “hybrid working”, where staff work from home some of the time, will become “the norm”. The BBC has the story.

Working from home some of the time, or hybrid working, will become “the norm” for many companies after the pandemic, says global workspace provider IWG.

Firms will be looking to save money and be more environment-friendly by using less office space, said IWG chief executive Mark Dixon.

IWG said 2020 had been a “challenging” year as fewer firms rented its offices.

But it said it was ready to take advantage of “accelerating demand” for hybrid working.

“Something’s happening and it is a change to the way that companies and people work,” Mr Dixon told the BBC’s Today programme.

At the very least, Mr Dixon said that many firms will seek alternatives to owning their own office space, and will adopt third-party facilities instead.

“It works for companies, because it’s a lot cheaper,” he said. “It’s also much, much better for the environment,” he added, as it enabled workers to cut back on commuting.

One big UK employer, the Nationwide building society, has indicated that it does not intend to force people to return to the office if they have been successfully able to work from home during the pandemic.

Its leader of people and culture, Jane Hanson, told the BBC that about two-thirds of its 18,000 employees had been working from home for the past year.

“We won’t be asking them to go back to the office and we’ve given people a commitment at the moment that the current working practices will continue until at least June, whilst we’re working out what the future looks like,” she said.

This news casts further doubt on the notion that life will return to full “normality” after lockdown(s). But the question remains whether businesses will consider the cost of continuing to station their staff in offices to be greater than that of reduced productivity when staff do work from home. Last October, the Mail reported that “as much as 24% of businesses said there had been a decrease in productivity when workers logged on from kitchen tables”.

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