The new normal of hybrid work is here to stay at least in the near to medium term as companies are putting in place new work policies defining it as an employee value proposition.
They see it as a way of attracting and retaining talent across sectors as well as ensuring quick turnaround and cost optimisation. Employees, on the other hand, find more work-life balance in the new model.
And these beliefs of both employees and employers have proven the hybrid work model to be sector-agnostic as firms across legal, consulting, technology, financials, and startup segments are adopting the new normal despite the virus fading out and economic activities picking up.
To be sure, the world of work has changed dramatically since the World Health Organization termed Covid-19 a global pandemic on 11 March 2020. Since then, the virus has impacted not only health and healthcare around the world but also disrupted how people live, study and work, as well as slowed down economies.
Company policies on hybrid work
Law firm Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas & Co has put in place a hybrid work policy beginning March that allows balancing individual needs, team dynamics, and client requirements. Online travel firm MakeMyTrip believes at least for the next two to three quarters its offices will operate the hybrid model.
“Flexibility is now seen as a new entrant in employee value proposition across sectors, even for the ones who never believed in working from home. Many firms today are projecting flexible working models as one of the key drivers in attracting and retaining talent. While some firms have included these models permanently in their HR strategy, some are sitting on the fence and monitoring how things would unfold,” said Nimisha Pathak, director of HR at consulting and professional management firm Alvarez & Marsal.
“The move to a hybrid mode of working is geared towards enabling our people to leverage the best of cutting edge remote working technology as well as our physical infrastructure,” said Pallavi S Shroff, managing partner at Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas & Co.
Even Parag Agrawal, chief executive of Twitter, has already announced ample flexibility for employees. Earlier this week, he said: “Wherever you feel most productive and creative is where you will work and that includes working from home full time forever. Office every day? That works too. Some days from office and some days from home? Of course.”
Yuvaraj Srivastava, group chief human resource officer at MakeMyTrip, said he and his firm value employee wellbeing. “We believe a workplace should be attractive enough for workers to come and work and in the last two years we have never given a mandate that the office is opening on this date.
“We are saying the office is open and if you are willing to come, then come. Leaders are empowered to decide who should come and who should not. As Omicron is phasing out and offices are opening, we believe the office will run a hybrid model for the next two to three quarters.”
SIRO Clinpharm, a drug development solutions provider, said it has introduced a flexiwork policy for its employees which would enable them to work within a hybrid environment and enjoy a healthier work-life balance at least for the short term.
Consulting major PwC in a recent report said that a hybrid world helps align individual goals with organisational purpose.
Remote work in demand
With a change in workspace dynamics, employees are preferring permanent work from home opportunities, as per data from jobs aggregator Naukri.com. In the past six months, 3.2 million searches for both permanent and temporary remote jobs were made.
After rolling out a special feature on the job board, the firm saw over 93,000 permanent and temporary remote jobs being listed on its site, of which permanent remote roles made up 22 percent.
For the last two years, workspace dynamics have changed due to the pandemic. Though things are opening gradually, corporates largely believe that hybrid work is here to stay at least in the near to medium term.
Data shows that IT software, software services, IT enabled services and recruitment/staffing sectors are posting more permanent remote jobs. Companies posting both temporary and permanent remote jobs include Amazon, Tech Mahindra, HCL, PwC, Trigent, Flipkart, Siemens, Deloitte, Oracle, Zensar, TCS, and Capgemini, according to Naukri.