25% of all professional jobs in North America will be remote by the end of 2022, and remote opportunities will continue to increase through 2023, according to projections from data scientists at Ladders. While many enjoyed fully working from home during the peak of the coronavirus pandemic, returning to the office — and to a new, hybrid working concept — may take some getting used to. From the value in a hybrid working schedule to how one can make the most out of working from home in 2022, here’s how working from home has evolved post-pandemic.
How companies are adapting
While many went fully remote during the pandemic, companies are now resorting to a variety of hybrid working schedules, with FlexJobs having identified 25 companies that switched to a permanent flexible work model. The technology company HubSpot is just one example, as they have three flexible work options that allow employees to choose between an office, flex, or home schedule. For companies that are bringing employees back to the office in 2022 with a hybrid working model, Nicholas Bloom, an economics professor at Stanford notes that the best hybrid mix is “boring and predictable,” such as a model of three days in the office, and two working from home.
An effective concept?
As this is the first wide-scale adoption of hybrid work, the Guardian notes that whether or not the structure will last is unclear. While many companies are still reluctant to implement a hybrid work style, recent studies work to give insight on the effectiveness of the concept. Highlighted by Forbes.com, a study from Ergotron sampled 1,000 full time workers, and found that “as workers become more acclimated to hybrid and remote office environments since the onset of Covid-19, the hybrid workplace model has empowered employees to reclaim physical health benefits, too.” With 56% of employees citing mental health improvements in addition to a better work life balance (and more physical activity), key findings from the study also note that an impressive 88% agree that the flexibility of a hybrid working model has increased their job satisfaction.
How a designated WFH space can help
While many are beyond happy with a hybrid working style, there are a great few who don’t enjoy working from home. In fact, 11% of US workers would prefer to work full time in the office, while just 62% said they’d like to spend at least some time there, according to a 2022 study by PwC. Abi Smith, a business manager at food producer Spice Kitchen, notes “I would never apply for a home or remote-working role,” further going on to say, “Even when I was furloughed for a few weeks… Not having a routine where you get up, leave the house, and socialize and interact with other people throughout the day, I think that can massively affect your mental health. Not to leave your house for long periods of time, I don’t think it’s good for you.”
For those who are now working a hybrid schedule and dislike working from home, additional challenges may be found in managing to be as productive as possible, or in navigating a healthy work/home balance. That said, creating a home office space will help, and can be done even if you don’t have much space to work with. With creative solutions that involve transforming your closet or under-the-stairs space into a workspace, one can enjoy the many benefits that come with a designated workspace — such as creating boundaries between a work and home life, and nourishing a work mindset. In order to create the perfect home office space, looking for areas of your home where space can be best utilized, and seeking out natural light (which is essential for productivity and boosting mood), can ensure you get the most out of your new setup.
With the popularity of working from home continuing to rise, hybrid working schedules are being implemented by many. However, for those who don’t enjoy working from home — even if it’s just for a day or two out of the week — creating a home office is a great place to start in ensuring you’re making the most of the situation.