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What Is a Hybrid Work Schedule? (With Examples)

While many companies may have a preference for in-office or fully remote work, others are open to a middle ground: Hybrid work.If you’re wondering what a hybrid work schedule is and how it works, this overview will help you with everything you need to know about what hybrid work can look like.

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What is a hybrid work schedule?

Hybrid work is a mix (or a hybrid) between working remotely and working in a physical space. This approach blends elements of both remote work and traditional in-office work, often offering employees the flexibility to choose when and where they work.

The advantages of hybrid work

There are many advantages to a hybrid work model for employers, including:

  • Increased productivity: A hybrid model can give employees more autonomy over their work schedules. Employees who feel they have independence may feel more empowered at work and are often more likely to be productive.
  • Attract top talent: A hybrid work model can help attract top talent by providing a balance between remote and in-office work, and the flexibility it offers can accommodate diverse work preferences.
  • Retain culture: Employees still come into an office a few times weekly and benefit from in-person communication and collaboration, which can help the company build and maintain its culture and community.
  • Save money: Employers can save money with a hybrid work model in a few ways. Firstly, you could save money on utilities, food and materials by having a smaller number of employees in the office each business day. Additionally, some companies may choose to downsize to a smaller office.

The disadvantages of hybrid work

No matter which type of work model you choose to implement, there may be some downsides. In the case of hybrid work, these include:

  • Investing in additional employee equipment: If you allow employees to work from home regularly, you may need to provide them with the tools to ensure they can be productive at home. Alternatively, you can have an expense budget for employees and allow them to choose how to spend the money to make working at home comfortable.
  • Additional efforts to increase collaboration:A hybrid work model offers a lot of flexibility to your teams, which is highly valued by employees. However, you’ll need to balance remote work with in-office collaboration to see the benefits of hybrid work. It’s likely that you’ll need to encourage employees to participate in scheduled in-office days to build team dynamics and foster a sense of inclusion and belonging.
  • More extensive scheduling: An ideal hybrid schedule typically ensures that teams working together are in the office on the same days to collaborate and connect in person. This means someone has to carefully plan the hybrid schedule in a way that works for everyone.

Examples of hybrid work schedules

As an employer, the variety of options for hybrid work schedules means you can choose the one that works best for your company and employees. Here are some common hybrid work schedule examples:

1. Choose your own

With this option, you tell employees how many times a week (or month) you want them to come into the office, and they can decide when to come in.

This approach gives the most freedom to employees, allowing them to feel entirely in control of their schedule. They can make scheduling decisions based on how they prefer to work, which can maximize productivity and happiness at work.

However, this approach can come with challenges. As with fully remote schedules, one of the main challenges will usually be for teams to find efficient ways to communicate and collaborate.

For example, a team might not coordinate closely with each other on the days when they’re coming into the office. As a result, there are no in-person meetings or discussions. Even when someone comes into the office, they find that the rest of their team happens to be working remotely that day. This can defeat the purpose of culture and collaboration that a hybrid work model is supposed to encourage. If this happens, consider having your employees work together to align their schedules to accommodate more in-person collaboration.

2. Same days for all employees

A popular approach to hybrid work is one where the employer chooses the same in-office days for everyone. For example, the entire office gets to work from home on Mondays and Fridays but is asked to come into the office from Tuesdays to Thursdays.

This approach is popular because it can be easy to implement. This type of schedule allows for easy meetings and collaboration. The office still brings everyone together a few days a week while giving employees some freedom for other days.

3. Manager-chosen schedule

One option for a hybrid work schedule is to have the manager choose the exact schedule for their team. This allows the manager to take feedback from the team about what days would be preferable. It also allows the manager to plan the schedule for the coworkers who need to collaborate to come into the office on the same days.

4. Hybrid blend

The last option for a hybrid schedule is a mix of approaches. This might happen when different groups of employees have different needs. For example, most of the organization might be on a set schedule (Tuesdays through Thursdaysin the office), but the sales department works on a manager-chosen schedule due to the unique collaboration requirements of the team.

A hybrid blend is a great approach that accommodates different departments. However, employers should always be prepared to explain why groups receive their specific hybrid work schedule type so there are no hard feelings between employee groups.

Is hybrid work right for my business?

Now that you know what a hybrid work schedule is, it’s time to decide if it’s right for your company. The choice to go to a hybrid schedule can be a significant shift if you’re 100% remote or 100% in-office. Here are some questions to consider asking yourself when deciding if hybrid is suitable for you:

  • Do you have a long-term lease on office space and feel that going hybrid would be a financial loss on this investment?
  • If you were previously fully remote, are you willing to lose some talent? People who moved far from the office or who don’t like hybrid work may leave the organization.
  • Are you prepared to help your employees set up working stations at home with additional equipment or funding?
  • Do you have a thorough hybrid work policy in place?
  • Do you trust your employees and are prepared to provide them with extra autonomy?
  • Have you surveyed your employees to understand their feelings about the change?

Once you answer these questions, you should better understand whether a hybrid schedule fits your business and employees. Hybrid work might not be the right fit for every company, but when done right, it can be the perfect balance that offers all the benefits of remote and in-office work in one.

FAQ on hybrid work schedules

How many days in the office do you need for a “hybrid work model?”

There is no single approach to hybrid work, which means you get to choose how many days your employees need to come into the office. Many companies ask their employees to go into the office two to three days a week.

What is the best day of the week to allow employees to work from home?

Many offices allow their employees to work remotely on Mondays and Fridays. Mondays are the start of the week, and many employees prefer to stay home to start their work with a highly productive day without distractions. Fridays are the end of the week, so working from home can be a nice way to wrap up the work week.

Are hybrid workers happier?

If an employee is happy, it’s more likely that they’ll be productive, dedicated to their role and positively impact other coworkers. One study comparing remote, in-office and hybrid workers found that the hybrid employees had the highest satisfaction rating. This makes sense as hybrid workers get the best of both worlds—the comfort and flexibility of remote work and the occasional collaboration in the office.

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