Poly outlines roadmap for hybrid success – Business Plus

A new report from Poly warns that hybrid work policies are destined to fail if companies do not protect organisational culture while facilitating a return to office.

The report by the Galway-based audio and video company suggests that getting hybrid workers back to the office is being impacted by the cost of living spiral, in addition to concerns over work/ life balance and productivity.

Poly’s research suggests that nearly seven out of ten office workers now accept that 9-5 has been replaced by anytime working and four out of ten are prone to ‘noise rage’ if colleagues are too loud.

Poly’s EMEA senior vice president Paul Clark commented: “More than ever, employees are asking themselves ‘Why do I need to come in?’ – but this question isn’t being answered.

“A good analogy from the report is that organisations need to take a Glastonbury inspired approach to the return to office in the hybrid working world.

“When you hear people talking about why they went, they never say it’s because of how nice the Pyramid stage looks. The appeal is the total experience festival goers get – the food, the bands, the people.

“Organisations must think about the total experience too – how spaces work, the technology behind them and address cultural issues. Doing this will help organisations to magnetise their workforce to the office, instead of mandating a return.”

Poly, which makes and markets ‘collaboration technology’ such as video conferencing kit and headsets, contends that traditional office designs no longer fit the demands of the more flexible workforces who require dedicated areas to connect and focus.

According to a spring 2022 survey of 160 major employers in New York, the larger the company the slower the pace of return to office (RTO). A recent CBRE survey of 130 firms in Europe revealed that small firms with fewer than 100 employees were moving much faster to repopulate their offices than larger ones.

Poly
Hybrid success

Poly
Hybrid success

The new whitepaper from Poly declares: “Standing silently on the sidelines and just hoping people will come back to the office, or clumsily mandating their return, won’t work. There will be misaligned expectations, growing employee concerns and dysfunction across different parts of the organisation.

“For enterprise firms to really grasp the nettle of RTO, they should proactively develop a roadmap for hybrid success. This might reasonably include:

  • a definition of leadership expectations around a joined-up approach to workplace experience
  • a commitment to supporting and driving cultural values
  • a checklist of enabling technologies for a mix of in-office and remote work
  • and an in-depth segmentation appraisal of workforce preferences, job roles and aptitudes for different levels of office attendance.”
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