In its simplest terms, a hybrid workplace model fuses in-office and remote work to provide working flexibility to employees. Within a hybrid working system, employees on average experience more independence and in many cases an elevated work-life balance — which often leads to greater employee engagement.
The technology to facilitate a hybrid office working model has been in existence for some time now, but organizations have generally been cautious to accept a more flexible way of working, especially in mainland China.
However, during the COVID-19 pandemic, many organizations around the world had to rapidly adapt and implement a hybrid office working system simply to stay in business — with the majority of employees in many cases, working from home.
In response to this, during Q1 and part way through Q2 this year Cushman & Wakefield Research conducted a 20-question survey to gauge the current thinking of corporate real estate professionals in mainland China on the subject of the hybrid office. Key findings from the survey include:
- There is around a 50-50 split between those enterprises which have not considered implementing/not implemented a hybrid office working system and those that are considering implementing/have implemented a hybrid office working system
- For those enterprises that have adopted a hybrid office working system, the vast majority of survey responding enterprises cited the COVID-19 pandemic as being the event which most accelerated their decision to implement
- The decision to adopt a hybrid office working system was largely driven by an adopting and implementing enterprise’s management team
- In terms of employee generational groups, Millennials and Generation Z are most in favor of a hybrid office working system
- For hybrid office working system-adopting enterprises, the number one advantage upon adoption and implementation is the greater freedom of choice open to employees when it comes to when and where they work and the number one challenge is weakened working relationships among the employees
- Of those enterprises which have adopted a hybrid office working system, the majority have re-designed their office space, with a greater proportion of flexible space and collaborative space being factored in