Embracing Hybrid Working and the Return to the Office
How hybrid are European workplaces?
A lack of planning and investment in hybrid working is threatening to derail a widespread successful return to the office.
Research conducted by Opinium, on behalf of Ricoh Europe, captures the thoughts and feelings of 3,000 office workers across the UK, Ireland, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands and Spain. It reveals that many remain cautious about returning to the office full time, highlighting the importance of flexible hybrid working for organisations.
Trust in business leaders grows but access to room booking systems and smart lockers could be lacking
Research from Ricoh Europe shows that employers have come a long way in gaining support from the workforce. Trust between employers and employees has improved throughout the course of the pandemic. Almost two-thirds (64%) of employees think their employers are more confident in their ability to stay motivated and productive when working remotely – a 23% increase compared to a similar study in 2021.
Yet less than half (45%) have seen an increase in meeting room communication technology to aid hybrid working, while almost one-in-four (23%) say the amount of collaboration space in their office has decreased. In addition, just 32% believe there has been an increase in safe access to equipment, such as lockers for picking up IT equipment, without having to meet a colleague face-to-face. This could cause significant friction for employees seeking to return to the office, discouraging them from being present on a regular basis. If left unaddressed, workplace productivity could decline while top talent seeks more flexible employment.
Creating a workplace that truly embraces hybrid working is the next vital step in the journey. While there are many benefits of having people work together in the same room, hybrid working will be here for the foreseeable future. Investing in hybrid working now is an investment in the future – it will improve productivity and help with talent retention.