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What Will Work Look Like Post Pandemic? The Hybrid In-Office, Remote Work Model is the Most Favored

By late last summer, it became clear that most companies would likely move to a hybrid working model, which combines increased levels of remote work with in-office work.

The Washington Post’s recent article The hybrid office is here to stay. The shift could be more disruptive than the move to all-remote work covers the growing number of companies announcing they’re going hybrid.  Key quote:

“The post-vaccine workplace is taking shape, and for many it’s going to be a hybrid model, allowing more remote work but with clear expectations that some days a week will be in the office.”

The reason hybrid work is winning is surveys consistently show most workers and their bosses think hybrid is the best way to go.

For example, PWC’s study It’s time to reimagine where and how work will get done found that “less than one in five executives say they want to return to the office as it was pre-pandemic.” As the chart below shows, most executives think employees need to be in the office between two and four days a week to maintain a strong culture.

PWC hybrid work

PWC also found that most employees think they should be in the office two to three days a week.

Not surprisingly, most companies agree and say when they return they expect their employees to be in the office three days a week.

The Washington Post article’s title mentions that this shift will be disruptive.  But the focus of the article is on it being disruptive for companies.

The shift to hybrid work models will also have major economic and societal impacts due to dislocations caused by changing commuter patterns and shifts in where people choose to live.

And we’re just beginning to understand what these second order impacts are and what they will mean.  

Steve King

Steve King is an advisory board member of JEM and a founding partner of Emergent Research where he leads the firm’s ongoing research identifying, analyzing and forecasting the global trends and shifts impacting consumers, small businesses, the gig economy, independent workers and Web 3.0’s role in future of work. Steve enjoys wide industry recognition as an expert on the future of work. He is an active public speaker and has written for the Harvard Business Review, Fast Company, U.S. News and World Report, Venture Beat, Wired and other publications.

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