Hybrid Working Model : Emerging Trend

The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted the way that companies and employees work. In India, where most companies and employees follow a systematic and structured approach of on-site 9 to 5 jobs, remote work and hybrid working models are new concepts that are gradually becoming popular. As opposed to traditional working models, remote and hybrid working models provide employees with the ease and flexibility to work at their own pace and comfort. A recent study by Statista suggests that in 2021, 73% of the employees from a global survey want flexible work options to stay post-pandemic. 

Hybrid working model: A reality 

By embracing new working models, big brands like Google and Microsoft are making hybrid working the new reality. Microsoft’s decision to adopt a hybrid working model is based on the fact that a “vast majority of employees say that they want more flexible remote work options” along with “more in-person collaboration, post pandemic,” highlights Microsoft CEO, Satya Nadella based on their research. In a recent post on LinkedIn, Nadella wrote,  “Hybrid work represents the biggest shift to how we work in our generation. And it will require a new operating model, spanning people, places, and processes.” 

Simultaneously, the tech giant, Google, has also offered a blend of remote and in-site working options to its employees. Google and Alphabet CEO, Sundar Pichai, took to Twitter to share more details about the plan – “The future of work at Google is flexibility. The majority of our employees still want to be on campus some of the time yet many would also enjoy the flexibility of working from home a couple days a week, spending time in another city for part of the year, or even moving there permanently. Google’s future workplace will have room for all of these possibilities. We’re moving to a hybrid work week with most Googlers in the office approximately 3 days a week.” This model will provide Googlers with the flexibility to work based on their preferences and convenience as 60% of the employees work together in the office for a few days, 20% work in new locations and the other 20% work from home. 

As more and more companies adopt the model of hybrid working and move away from traditional work arrangements, it is essential to analyze the advantages and disadvantages of the same to be able to implement the hybrid model better. 

Pros 

  • Flexibility 

With employees demanding more flexibility at work and choosing to work on their own terms, companies must become more flexible to cater to the needs of their employees. This will in turn provide employees with the space to work on their own terms, providing them with a sense of empowerment and comfort. The positive impact of this decision will ultimately result in increased efficiency and productivity. 

  • Access to great talent

A hybrid working model will allow companies to access great talent without being restricted by geographical barriers. This will enable companies to build globally distributed teams and have access to great talent across the globe. Moreover, this will also help companies build more diverse and inclusive teams, encouraging greater collaboration and welcoming multiple perspectives. 

  • Reduced cost of operation

A hybrid working model will allow companies to cut costs of operations by reducing office space and rent. Businesses can now revamp and reduce their office size and space, supplies, tools and utilities without disrupting their workflow and day to day operations. According to a report by Microsoft, more than 56% of leaders believe that remote working delivers cost savings as businesses take steps like reducing their office footprint and their expenses on travel. 

Cons

  • Potential burnout 

A hybrid model may hamper the work-life balance of many employees as they work for long hours. With employees trying to overcompensate for working from home or remotely, many may take up roles and responsibilities post-traditional working hours along with shorter breaks. This may result in potential burnout as employees feel exhausted and overworked. 

  • Disconnect between employees

Team building can be one of the biggest challenges in a hybrid setting. With half of the workforce operating from the office and others from home, the chances of communication gaps and miscommunication increase.

Despite the cons, the idea of a hybrid working model reflects the future of modern workplaces with increased digital fluency, greater innovation and autonomy for employees. 

Ensuring a smooth transition

  • Increased communication 

In order to work effectively, companies need to ensure effective communication to avoid any confusion and misunderstandings between employees. Using technologies and tools like Slack, video conferencing, emails, etc., can be used to work efficiently. Team leaders also need to ensure that clear expectation setting helps employees and employers set the norms for a hybrid working model.

  • Equip employees with the required tools and technologies 

To successfully implement a hybrid working model, companies must adopt a centralized, cloud-based system to allow smooth collaboration. It is essential to provide continued support and training to all employees as well as equip them with the tools and techniques to collaborate effectively.

  • Establish clear and transparent policies 

While establishing the norms and policies of a hybrid working model, it is essential to ensure that all policies and practices must be impartial and support the needs of all employees – those who work on-site and those who do not. It is imperative to set some ground rules and address questions like can employees adjust their work hours? Can people work from the office and home as they please? Answers to these questions will help companies foster a culture of transparency in the organization. 

Conclusion

As the world around us changes, so should our ways of working. The concept of a “workplace” is no longer defined by a physical set-up of desks and chairs in a designated space, rather it is a space where one feels comfortable and focused. With the concept of the hybrid working model gaining momentum, many companies are gradually embracing this idea with open arms, providing their employees with the freedom and choice to work on their own terms. This has proven to be a bold move as organizations take a step towards becoming more people-centric, acknowledging the needs of their people.

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About BOD Consulting Team

BOD solves big problems for mid market enterprises to help them become large.We partner with mid-sized firms across industries to solve their most pressing business challenges, unlock value creation and implement transformative solutions to help them compete sustainably at the highest level.

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Arun Gupta

Partner at BOD Consulting | Independent Director & Board Member: Hemas Pharmaceuticals, Sri Lanka and Locuz Enterprise Solutions, India | Co-founder, Fortytwo Labs | Ex-Head eCommerce at DHL | Ex- Head Internet Services at Hughes Telecom | Leadership Development Program- The Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth | Leadership Development Program- ISB | Post Graduation in Software Technology from NCST. 

With 38 years of professional experience, Arun has led many groundbreaking IT-driven ventures, shaping the industry and fostering technology adoption. His consulting practice has its foundations based on success as a CIO/CTO across various verticals, geographies, and businesses in mid-market, large enterprises, and Government entities.

Arun’s expertise lies in IT strategy alignment to business strategy & plan, project planning and management, identifying and creating business value from IT, technology team effectiveness, and business Intelligence and analytics. His domain expertise includes Retail, pharmaceuticals, e-commerce, and logistics – though he has consulted across other verticals too.

He has garnered numerous industry awards and recognitions, including the Hall of Fame Awards by CIO Magazine and Information Week. Furthermore, Arun is a celebrated speaker globally and has a passion for photography and travelling.

Bhaskar Pramanik

Expert Advisor at BOD Consulting | Ex-Microsoft, Oracle and Sun Microsystems | Advisory Member of Board of Schulich University, Canada and Bennett University, India | IIT Kanpur

Bhaskar Pramanik is an accomplished management leader and professional from the Technology Industry. He is currently appointed as a Senior Advisor at Rothschild & Co. and Board Member and Independent Director of TCNS Clothing Company Ltd. He is also on the Advisory Board of Schulich University, Canada, and Bennett University, India.

He has previously held National and Global Leadership positions in leading Multinational Technology Companies like Microsoft, Oracle & Sun Microsystems. He has worked in India, Singapore, and the US.

He recently retired from the Board of SBI, India’s largest bank. He has also been on the Executive Committee of NASSCOM and the National Committee of CII and AMCHAM. He regularly speaks at Industry and Leadership forums.

Sidharth Balakrishna

Senior Partner at BOD Consulting | Mentor-MIT Boston, Faster Capital & Tiger Hall| Ex-Essel (Zee) Group and Cairn India| Authored 6 books | IIM Calcutta | SRCC

Sidharth Balakrishna has 18+ years of experience in senior management roles across many noteworthy organisations including the Essel (Zee) Group, Cairn India, KPMG, and Shell. He holds a post-graduate diploma from IIM Calcutta and an Economics (Hons) degree from SRCC, Delhi University.

He is a mentor with MIT Boston (USA), Faster Capital (Dubai), and TigerHall (Singapore) and mentors startups with MassChallenge (Boston and Tel Aviv). He has authored six books and is an adjunct faculty at many leading management institutes.

Deepak Vats

Senior Partner at BOD Consulting | Managing Director, Corpspark Advisors | Ex-BCG and ITC | IIM Calcutta | IIT Kharagpur

Deepak Vats has 16+ years of experience in defining strategic direction for global corporate leaders and new-age start-ups. He holds a post-graduate diploma from IIM Calcutta and a B-Tech degree from IIT Kharagpur.

He is an expert in growth strategy, organisational transformation & new business build. He has previously worked with leading global & Indian corporates and is a Co-founder and incubator of multiple startups in the E-Commerce, SAAS and Technology domains.

Atul Takle

Senior Partner at BOD Consulting | Senior Advisor to PR24x7 and Bridgeweave Technologies | Ex-RPG group, Tata Consultancy Services and Accenture | JBIMS Mumbai | Sydenham

Atul Takle has 30+ years of experience in corporate communications and marketing. He holds a postgraduate degree from Jamnalal Bajaj Institute of Management Studies, Mumbai and a bachelor’s degree from Sydenham college in Mumbai.

He has worked with renowned organisations like RPG group, Tata Consultancy Services, Accenture in India, Pantaloon Retail (India) Limited and SKS Microfinance.
He is currently engaged as a Marketing Consultant to the Scindia School and NIIT University and is a Senior Advisor to PR24x7 & Bridgeweave Technologies.

Sandeep Das

Senior Partner at BOD Consulting | Ex-McKinsey & Co., Kantar Consulting and Interbrand | Delhi University

Sandeep Das has 20+ years of experience working with global brands across multiple geographies on brand, growth and corporate strategy. He holds a master’s degree in Business Economics and Marketing from Delhi University.

He has a successful track record of working in impactful, senior and high client-exposure roles in leading research organisations like McKinsey & Co., Kantar Consulting, Interbrand & Ipsos Strategy3.

Anjali Malhotra

Senior Partner at BOD Consulting | Founder, C-Xcel | Member of FICCI Wise Council | Director, Founder Institute | UCLA Anderson School of Management

Anjali Malhotra has 30+ years of corporate experience across industries like Media, FMCG, Retail and BFSI sectors. She holds a postgraduate degree in Business administration and Management from UCLA Anderson School of Management.

She is the founder of C-Xcel, a boutique advisory practice that helps B2C businesses to achieve greater success through Customer Centricity. She has built brands in highly competitive markets including early-stage businesses like Revlon, Dishtv and Aviva. Over the years, the industry has recognised her as Cx100, Digi 100, Top 10 CDO, Digitalist Thought Leader, Marketer of the year- Media & Entertainment and Best use of Technology in Marketing.

Saurabh Uboweja

Founder & Managing Partner at BOD Consulting | Board member-World Communication Forum Association | Adjunct faculty-EU Business School | Ex-Citibank | IIM Calcutta | NIT Bhopal

Saurabh Uboweja has 16+ years of experience in consulting, branding, leadership development and digital transformation. He holds a post-graduate diploma from IIM Calcutta and a B-Tech degree from NIT Bhopal.

Recognised as one of the 50 Most Influential Strategy Leaders by the World Marketing Congress two times, he serves as an advisor on the boards of both listed and non-listed firms. He is an adjunct faculty at many leading business schools including the EU Business School.

Ajay Kohli

Expert Advisor at BOD Consulting | Chair and Regents Professor at Georgia Tech’s Scheller College of Business | Among 100 most cited authors in the fields of Business and Economics combined in a decade | University of Pittsburgh | IIM Calcutta | IIT Kharagpur

Dr Ajay K. Kohli is Gary T. and Elizabeth R. Jones Chair and Regents Professor at Georgia Tech’s Scheller College of Business. He previously taught at eminent institutions like Emory University, Harvard Business School & The University of Texas at Austin.

He holds a doctorate degree from the University of Pittsburgh, a post-graduate diploma from IIM Calcutta and a B-Tech degree from IIT Kharagpur.

He is among the 100 most cited authors in the fields of Business and Economics combined in a decade, and two of his articles are among the 10 most cited Journal of Marketing articles in the past 25 years. In 2017, he received the AMA-Irwin-McGraw-Hill Distinguished Marketing Educator Award and in 2016, he received the Paul D. Converse Award, termed “Marketing Hall of Fame” by Fortune.

Anil Kejriwal

Expert Advisor at BOD Consulting | Founder-I2Cure Pte. Ltd | Board Advisor of Felix Realty | Chairman of the Board of Uttar Industrial Estate- Uttar Development Pvt. Ltd. | IIT Kanpur

Besides investing in several IT start-up companies globally, Anil Kejriwal is the founder of I2Cure Pte. Ltd a global Biotech Company that manufactures patented Molecular Iodine (I₂) products for the global market. The company aims to bring the first-ever range of Cosmeceutical, Pharmaceutical, and Veterinary products based on a breakthrough in Advanced Molecular Iodine (I₂) Science; to provide the world with a solution to deliver more than just short-term, superficial protection against germs and bacteria, viruses, and fungi.

Anil is a B.Tech from IIT Kanpur with over three decades of experience and serves as a Board Advisor of Felix Realty and Chairman of the Board of Uttar Industrial Estate- Uttar Development Pvt. Ltd.

Manoj Agarwal

Expert Advisor at BOD Consulting | COO-Algonomy | Ex-Future Group India and Procter & Gamble | Chartered Accountant | Mumbai University

Manoj Agarwal is the Chief Operating Officer of Algonomy, a Bengaluru-based digital retail solutions company. A certified Chartered Accountant, he has over 20+ years of experience in global organisations, playing diverse roles with increasing responsibilities, including leading and managing high-performance groups to deliver impactful business results.

His expertise lies in Information Architecture and Strategy, Organization Design for productivity, Organisation Change Management, Data-Driven decision-making, Customer service model, Business Intelligence, Enterprise Performance Management & Financial Reporting and Consolidation.

    J Suresh

    Expert Advisor at BOD Consulting | National Council Member of Retailers Association of India | Ex-HUL and Arvind Fashions Ltd. | IIM Bangalore

    J Suresh is a highly respected leader and key spokesperson in the Consumer and Retail Industry who is currently working as an Independent Consultant. In a career spanning over 4 decades, he has largely worked for Hindustan Unilever Ltd. & Arvind Fashions Ltd. He retired as the MD & CEO of Arvind Fashions Ltd in 2021. He holds a post-graduate diploma from IIM Bangalore.

    He serves as the National Council Member of the Retailers Association of India and in the past has been the Chairman of CII’s National Council on Retail & Chairman of India Fashion Forum.

    He has played a key role in mentoring & leadership development of his subordinates. Many of them have grown to be successful CEOs of many companies.

    Thomas Varghese

    Expert Advisor at BOD Consulting | Business Head-Aditya Birla Group’s Textile Businesses | Ex-Chairman, CII – National Committee on Retail (2009-11) | Harvard Business School | IIT Delhi

    Thomas Varghese is the Business Head of Domestic Textiles, Overseas Spinning and Acrylic Fiber Businesses of The Aditya Birla Group’s Textile Businesses. In the last 21 years, he has held multiple positions in the group and helped Aditya Birla Retail emerge as one of India’s foremost Supermarket & Hypermarket Retailers as its MD & CEO.

    He holds an Advanced Management Program degree from Harvard Business School and Bachelor’s degree in Textile Sciences and Engineering from IIT Delhi.

    Apart from being the Chairman of the CII – National Committee on Retail for 3 years (2009-11) and a member of the Coca-Cola Retail Research Council for Eurasia & Africa, he has received many accolades including CEO of the Year by the Asian Retail Congress in Mumbai (2012), Most Admired Retail Professional of the Year at IRF (2010), Outstanding Business Leader by Aditya Birla Group (2004) and Distinguished Alumnus award of the Indian Institute of Technology, New Delhi (2002).

    Dr Raman Kumar

    Professor | Researches on Asset Pricing, Derivative Securities and Financial Markets | Served on over 50 dissertation committees | Ph.D.-University of Pittsburgh | PGDM-IIM Calcutta

    Raman Kumar is the R.V. and A.F. Oliver Professor of Investment Management in the Department of Finance, Insurance and Business Law at the R.B. Pamplin College of Business at Virginia Tech. He received his PGDM (MBA) from the Indian Institute of Management, Calcutta and his PhD from the University of Pittsburgh. He teaches finance and economics courses in the undergraduate, MBA, Executive MBA, and PhD programs.
    His research work largely centres around Asset Pricing, Derivative Securities, Financial Markets, Market Microstructure, and Empirical Research Methods in Finance, with some of his works published in prestigious publications such as the Journal of Finance, Journal of Finance and Economics, and Journal of Corporate Finance. 

    He has served on over 50 dissertation committees as Chair, Co-chair or member for PhD students in the Departments of Finance, Accounting and Information Systems, Marketing, Management, Hospitality and Tourism Management, Economics, Building Construction, and Civil Engineering at Virginia Tech.
    Shubhendu Agrawal

    Shubhendu Agrawal

    Senior Partner at BOD Consulting | General Electric (USA), Nestlé, Tata Motors | IIM Calcutta | University of Pune

    Shubhendu Agrawal has 18+ years of experience in Strategy, Business Operations, Organisation Transformation, Process Design & Implementation and Commercial Excellence. He also has extensive experience in the end-to-end New Product Development cycle – from consumer insights to product adoption & growth. He holds a postgraduate diploma from IIM Calcutta and a B-Tech degree from the University of Pune.

    He is passionate about profitable growth & social impact and serves as an advisor/member on the boards of several social enterprises & non-profits.

    Kanika

    Kanika Mathur

    Senior Partner, BOD Consulting | Founder, K-Trends | Ex COO APAC Mullen Lowe I Ex-Senior Vice President (Digital & Content Marketing), Dubai Tourism | Ex-Managing Director, Digitas | Ex-CMO, Harappa Education

    As a Marketing & Digital Transformation Strategist, Kanika Mathur has 30+ years of extensive interdisciplinary experience across Technology, CPG, Travel and Ed-tech. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Arts from Delhi University.

    Her professional career spans multiple industries and renowned organisations. She founded ‘Solutions Integrated Marketing Services’ in India. She set up Razorfish for the Publicis Groupe & shaped it into one of the country’s largest interactive agencies. As its first CMO, she also helped bolster the Harappa Education brand.

    Sumit Singla

    Sumit Singla

    Senior Partner, BOD Consulting | Independent HR Advisor at MSMEs | People Strategist, CompTeam | Guest Faculty Member, MDI | ex-Deloitte | ex-Accenture | ex-Aon

    With 18+ years of experience in the HR and Consulting domain, Sumit Singla has worked with various prominent organisations. He holds a Bachelor’s in Engineering from Punjab Engineering College, Chandigarh & a PG Diploma in Personnel Management and Industrial Relations from XLRI Jamshedpur.

    He has teamed up with diverse clients on a variety of high-impact projects relating to HR transformation, organisation restructuring, M&A, and HR tech.

    Currently, he consults with micro, small & medium enterprises to intensify their HR capabilities, while also mentoring young professionals. He has authored a book that deals with workforce experience & also participates in speaking engagements, forums, and guest lectures at business schools.

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    Dr PV Ramana Murthy

    Expert Advisor at BOD Consulting | Managing Partner at Pinsight By PV | Adviser – Employment and Labour Law Practice at Economic Laws Practice | Board Member at Swadha Foundation | Ex Global CHRO, Indian Hotels Company Ltd | Ex Executive VP HR, Coca-Cola

    Dr Murthy boasts an extensive 35-year corporate career, during which he contributed to renowned Fortune 500 and Global organisations. Apart from being a Lawyer, he holds a Master’s Degree in Organisational Psychology from INSEAD, Singapore. Additionally, he earned his Ph.D. in Strategic Human Resource Management from Sri Krishnadevaraya University, Andhra Pradesh. 

    Beyond his legal background, he serves as an HR Advisor and Consultant, extending his expertise to Indian and multinational companies. His focus spans leadership development, culture transformation, and integrated talent management services. His recent collaborations include supporting organisations like Bosch, Tata Projects, Novo Nordisk, and Taj SATs.

    During his stint at Coca-Cola, Dr Murthy not only managed the global leadership development function for the Bottling Investment Group (BIG) but also facilitated impactful leadership development initiatives.

    Mukesh Mathur

    Senior Partner at BOD Consulting |Ex-Godrej & Boyce, Polaris Retail Infotech and Oracle India | IIM Calcutta | IIT Kanpur

    Mukesh Mathur has 40+ years of experience in sales, marketing, and general management with leading Indian Companies and MNCs. He holds a post-graduate diploma from IIM Calcutta and a B-Tech degree from IIT Kanpur.

    He is passionate about training managers in KAM, value selling, and negotiations. He has been in senior leadership positions in Godrej & Boyce, Polaris Retail Infotech, and Oracle India, successfully managing multiple product categories including consumer durables, office automation, banking equipment, industrial material handling, and service engineers.