Remote working has proven to be invaluable in maintaining operations during the pandemic. However, as restrictions ease, small- and mid-sized businesses (SMBs) are now considering how to safely return to their offices.
Instead of simply returning to pre-pandemic setups, many SMBs are adopting hybrid work setups. Allowing employees to split their time between working from home and at the office is a key strategy today, empowering SMBs to enhance employee experiences and create a more productive work environment.
To ensure a prudent post-pandemic return to the office with hybrid work, having an optimal hybrid work policy is a must. Here is a short guide on how to create a hybrid work policy for your SMB.
1. Introduce hybrid work
You can begin writing your policy by explaining what hybrid working, or blended working, entails. Then, outline the benefits it can bring to your workforce and the business as a whole. For instance, hybrid work offers a higher level of flexibility that empowers employees to strike a good balance between creativity and collaboration. This, in turn, boosts productivity, which can pay dividends for your business.
Related reading: 7 Key tech your hybrid workers need
2. Define employee eligibility
It’s essential to specify in your policy which employees are eligible and ineligible for blended working. Determine which roles and functions are absolutely necessary to have in the office — such as those that require face-to-face interactions — as well as those that are more suitable for remote working.
Take note, however, that this doesn’t mean ineligible employees no longer have the right to request a flexible work arrangement. You can still offer alternative work arrangements, like flexible work schedules, as you deem appropriate. Simply elaborate in your policy the different types of flexible working available, and provide guidelines or a different policy for alternative work arrangement requests alongside your hybrid work policy.
3. Establish clear guidelines for in-office work
Include in your policy the arrangements that employees can expect when working at the office. You should set forth clear working patterns, putting emphasis on employees’ working hours and workspaces. For instance, indicate whether employees are required to stick strictly to regular hours or if they are allowed different start and end times for their workday, as long as they work during core hours.
You should also mention in your policy any safety and security measures that are currently enforced in the workplace. These could include a compulsory mask-wearing protocol, regular sanitation efforts, and adequately spaced or partitioned workspaces. It’s well worth communicating to employees the steps you are taking to ensure their safety and security while working in the office.
4. Set expectations for remote work
Your hybrid work policy must also establish guidelines that employees must observe while working out of the office. This could include steps for:
- Setting work hours and providing remote work reports
- Improving data security in a remote work environment
- Using company-vetted technology and equipment for remote work
- Filing sick leaves when working from home
- Maintaining work-life balance in a hybrid work arrangement
In addition, you can indicate in this part of your policy all the support available to your remote workers. Mention the tools and software that both on-site and remote employees can use to easily connect and work with one another despite being apart, and let them know about any financial assistance such as one-time or monthly home-office allowances.
Related reading: Raising productivity for remote workers
5. Frequently review and update your policy
The world of work continues to change drastically, so it’s important to review and update your policy regularly to adapt to any changes. For the most part, your hybrid work policy provides guidance to your managers and employees, ensuring that everyone remains on the same page and your business operates optimally.
Experience a world-class computing environment no matter where your employees are with the help of Kortek Solutions. Call us today to learn how our innovative IT solutions can ensure that your hybrid workforce remains productive and secure.