If you’re reading this post, you’ve (hopefully) reached a compromise in the in-office vs. remote debate. Welcome to the transformative journey to a hybrid working model – where traditional norms meet innovation, and adaptability is the key to success.

Over half of remote-capable workers in the U.S. are working a hybrid schedule. A 2023 Gallup poll surveying hybrid work trends showed that 52% of remote-capable employees work in a hybrid environment, 29% are fully remote, and 20% work in the office full-time.

Hybrid work is not just a trend; it’s a seismic shift in how businesses operate. Picture this: teams seamlessly collaborating from diverse locations, productivity soaring, and work-life balance taking center stage. For many of us, this is what the future of work looks like.

Stick with us, and we’ll take the pulse of hybrid work as it stands today, dissecting the game-changing models that savvy business owners are deploying. Plus, we’ll also discuss how employees and business owners reap the benefits of this model.

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What is a hybrid working model?

A hybrid working model is a mode of work that combines remote work and in-office work. It allows employees to work between remote and in-person work environments as needed.

The hybrid working model typically involves a blend of daily or weekly work schedules that alternate between remote and on-site work. This model is becoming especially popular as leaders seek a compromise between remote and on-site work.

5 examples of hybrid working models

There are plenty of ways to create a hybrid working model — and each caters to the diverse needs of employees and organizations. Let’s explore a few examples of hybrid work schedules and why they work so well.

1. Balanced collaboration schedule

  • Monday: Office day
  • Tuesday: Office day 
  • Wednesday: Work from anywhere
  • Thursday: Work from anywhere 
  • Friday: Flex day 

Why it works: This schedule provides a structured start to the week with two office days, allowing for in-person collaboration and team meetings. The midweek work-from-anywhere days then provide flexibility and a break from commuting, and the flex day on Friday allows employees to choose between office attendance and remote work based on their needs.

If another team member is on the other side of the world with an eight-hour time difference, the candidate must have the foresight to build in extra lead time. They'll also need to be savvy to communicate via written messages because setting up synchronous virtual meetings at convenient times may be more challenging."

2. Flexible midweek schedule

  • Monday: Office day
  • Tuesday: Work from anywhere
  • Wednesday: Work from anywhere
  • Thursday: Office day
  • Friday: Flex day

Why it works: This schedule frontloads the week with an office day for team synchronization. The midweek work-from-anywhere days also allow employees to focus on individual tasks, and the flex day at the end of the week offers the freedom to choose their preferred work setting.

3. Consecutive office days schedule

  • Monday: Office day
  • Tuesday: Office day
  • Wednesday: Flex day
  • Thursday: Work from anywhere
  • Friday: Work from anywhere

Why it works: In this schedule, consecutive office days at the beginning of the week facilitate concentrated collaboration. The midweek flex day provides a break, and the latter part of the week then offers flexibility for a change in work setting or focused remote work.

It’s also a great model for incentivizing better work-life balance because it allows teams to pair PTO and work from anywhere days to rest, travel more, or experiment with the digital nomad lifestyle.

4. Hybrid Fridays schedule

  • Monday: Work from anywhere
  • Tuesday: Office day
  • Wednesday: Work from anywhere
  • Thursday: Office day
  • Friday: Flex day

Why it works: This schedule introduces a more flexible start to the week, allowing work from anywhere on Monday and Wednesday. The latter part of the week is then structured with office days for collaboration, leading to a flexible Friday that accommodates varied work preferences and helps employees balance their work and personal lives.

5. Alternating office and remote days

  • Monday: Office day
  • Tuesday: Work from anywhere
  • Wednesday: Office day
  • Thursday: Work from anywhere
  • Friday: Office day

Why it works: This schedule alternates between office and remote days, providing a consistent rhythm. The midweek work-from-anywhere days break up the workweek, allowing for focused individual work, while the consecutive office days support team collaboration and communication.

Advantages of the hybrid working model

Hybrid work has benefits that span from empowering employees to positively impacting the planet. Let’s take a fact-based look at how everyone benefits from a hybrid working environment. 

  • Increase profits: The flexibility to work in preferred environments often leads to higher productivity and profits as employees can optimize their work conditions.
  • Cost savings: Besides increasing profits through productivity, companies can save money on a hybrid work model. Both employees and employers can benefit from reduced commuting costs and expenses associated with maintaining a physical office space.
  • Increase employee retention: Employees with flexible work environments report higher satisfaction and are less likely to leave the company.
63% of job seekers want work-life balance

Welcoming the hybrid model goes beyond mere adaptation — it also represents a strategic initiative to cultivate a resilient, environmentally friendly, and inclusive workplace that thrives in an increasingly global economy.

Disadvantages of the hybrid working model

While this model brings about enhanced flexibility and remote opportunities, it’s crucial to acknowledge the potential drawbacks that organizations and employees may encounter.

We’re solutions-oriented here at Hubstaff, so we’ll offer solutions alongside each challenge to help business leaders mitigate any risks they face in adapting to hybrid work.

Common hybrid challenges and solutions

  • Communication challenges: The reliance on digital communication tools may lead to misunderstandings, reduced team cohesion, and a potential lack of spontaneous interaction.
    • Solution: Schedule regular 1:1s with your team to ensure they understand expectations and feel supported. You can also share this guide to learn how to nail asynchronous communication.
  • Difficulty in monitoring productivity: Supervising and monitoring employee productivity can be more challenging in a remote setting and can then lead to concerns about accountability and performance.
  • Impact on company culture: Maintaining a solid company culture becomes more challenging when employees work remotely. Many fear it can negatively affect team dynamics, collaboration, and a sense of belonging.
    • Solution: Create time to bond as a team whenever possible. At Hubstaff, we host annual in-person retreats, quarterly virtual retreats, and also create Slack channels like #hobbies and #pubtrivia just for fun.
  • Strain on work-life balance: Without clear boundaries, remote work may lead to longer working hours, difficulty disconnecting, and an increased risk of burnout. These factors can negatively impact employees’ overall well-being.
    • Solution: Use your 1:1 meetings to gauge employee engagement and stress levels. You can also try a tool like Officevibe to send anonymous surveys and gather data on employee stress levels. Check out our tips to improve your work-life balance.

Acknowledging and addressing the potential disadvantages is integral to shaping a balanced and effective hybrid work environment. By proactively finding solutions to communication challenges and fostering a strong organizational culture, companies can then mitigate the downsides of the hybrid model.

How to build a hybrid working model for your team

Adopting a hybrid model is a strategic move for business leaders aiming to blend the best of in-person and remote collaboration. Now that we’ve covered the why let’s talk about the how.

We’re not fans of giving blanket advice on running a remote or hybrid business. Luckily, we have countless guides to managing a team on a flexible schedule. Each process step will link to a detailed guide post teaching you how to nail this strategy.

Six steps for building a successful hybrid working model

  1. Define communication protocols: Establish clear guidelines for communication to maintain seamless collaboration. Then leverage digital tools for efficient information exchange, keeping everyone connected in the office or remotely. Access your free Communication Manifesto to make this process even easier.
  2. Invest in technology: The right tools can ensure a seamless transition between virtual and physical workspaces, fostering efficiency and connectivity. Read this guide to find the best tools for equipping your hybrid or remote team — including a workforce management tool like Hubstaff.
  3. Build team culture: Curating your internal culture is easier said than done. Check out this guide for building a healthy team culture. Ideas include virtual events, in-person gatherings, and structured communication channels to maintain camaraderie.
  4. Focus on outcomes: We’re outcome-obsessed here at Hubstaff. Learn how to shift the emphasis from hours worked to results achieved. One key is finding tools to gather workforce insights and using that data to encourage productivity.
  5. Provide clear communication and support: Offer training on remote work best practices and ensure ongoing support for your team. It’s also important to address challenges promptly and empower your team to navigate the hybrid model effectively.
  6. Continuous adaptation. Building a successful hybrid working model requires a thoughtful approach and continuous adaptation. Business leaders can foster a dynamic work environment that maximizes productivity and employee satisfaction by prioritizing communication, flexibility, and outcomes.

Final words on hybrid working

Hybrid working models offer a flexible and efficient way of working for remote business owners. They balance the benefits of remote and on-site work environments to create a perfect solution for businesses seeking to adapt to the changing work landscape.

As we all navigate this new frontier, let’s harness the power of the hybrid working model to shape a future where work is not just a place you go but something you do anywhere you are.

Category: Remote