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Post-Pandemic World – 5 Workplace Models

In pre-pandemic times, most companies would have seen their headquarters as an essential element of their business. After going into a remote working world in March of 2020 – it’s become apparent that people are just as productive when working from home. 

This change to the workplace has allowed business leaders to adapt to a new, more beneficial workplace model for their employees. Industry leaders have conflicting thoughts on whether or not working from home is here to stay or if people are starved for face-to-face interactions.

Over the past two years, five different workplace models have emerged. In Australia, we’ve seen companies choosing other models that work for their employees, so there is no one set model for all businesses to work within. 

The five models we’ve seen businesses implementing are:

  1. Office Centred – Employees returning to the office and resuming their previous routine. 
  2. Movement Office – Often referred to as ‘hot desking’, this is an office space where employees don’t have an assigned desk. Providing movement between office areas and allowing employees to work from home when it suits them.
  3. Collaborative Hybrid – A hybrid model where employees can visit offices when working with a team but work from home when doing individual work. 
  4. Hubs – Instead of having one central office, hubs provide smaller ‘neighbourhood’ offices for employees who live near each other to work together closer to home.
  5. Fully Remote – Gives employees total flexibility in where they work and does not require anyone to come into a physical office. 

While none of these are new, these alternative models have become more prevalent in the past 24 months for many employees as they adapt to a post-pandemic world. This change has also allowed many companies who were hesitant to try a new model pre-pandemic to ‘dabble’ with models that work with their employees. 

Every business and industry will have different needs for their employees and workloads, so there is no one set model for all to work from. This variety allows leaders to get the most out of their employees and for employees to achieve a work-to-life balance.

No matter what model companies go with, there will most likely be some level of remote work involved with employees having uncontrollable life events or changes. The most favoured option by Australian employees seems to be any model with flexibility between the office and home. 

For leaders struggling to choose a model – surveying your employees is the best way to select a model that works best for your employees. Different demographics have different needs, so directly asking your employees what support they need and how they would like to work is essential before concreting a model. 

When choosing a workplace model, companies should be looking at their purpose and strategy, alongside their employees preferred working styles. One of the most important things a company can do when switching up their working models is to keep constant and clear communication with their employees, so nobody is confused or stressed about these changes. 

If there was anything to learn from lockdowns and pandemic pressures, it was that not every model worked for everyone. Merging different working models to create individual models for your company is part of the trial and error of finding what works for your business. Nothing is a one-size-fits-all, so workplace models shouldn’t be either. If you want to know more about workplace changes and trends, sign up for our newsletter.

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