How did we get here? The Hybrid Working Evolution

“Hybrid work represents the biggest shift to how we work in our generation…it will require a new operating model, spanning people, places, and processes.”

– Satya Nadella, CEO & Chairman, Microsoft

The pandemic has changed the way the world works forever and now 90% of companies are moving to hybrid working. Whether a company moves to hybrid or not is no longer the question – the question now is how to do hybrid.

The vast majority of companies are unknowingly sleepwalking into a hybrid model that has the potential to destroy not only their company’s culture but also its performance. This is due to a focus on managing hybrid real estate (their second largest cost) to the detriment of their most valuable asset and largest cost, their people.

As the world transitions to hybrid, more variables will be introduced to the everyday work experience – making it increasingly difficult to coordinate and work with colleagues. In fact, Adam Grant has stated that “the first and perhaps cardinal sin of hybrid work is a lack of coordination.” Many solutions are stuck trying to solve today’s hybrid challenges with yesterday’s facilities management tools – making it impossible for employees to know where the best place to work is or, more importantly, who they can actually work with.

In this three-part blog series, we will look at the common hybrid working models, discover how we got to where we are today, the challenges that are presented by hybrid working, and most importantly – how companies can solve the challenges by adopting a facilities people-first approach to hybrid work.

How We Got Here: Hybrid Phase 1

The pandemic didn’t just create the hybrid working model out of nowhere, it has simply accelerated the trend. In fact, the trend started in the early 2000s when the internet became good enough to be reliably used at home. In Hybrid 1, the work desk could be anywhere, as long as there was an electrical socket and an ethernet cable.

Shortly after this came Hybrid 1.5 – the birth of WiFi. WiFi meant that employees were no longer tethered to the desk by an ethernet cable. There were still some physical barriers though and it wasn’t until the Blackberry, and subsequently the iPhone, that work could truly happen anywhere and at any time. The iPad catalyzed the *bring your own device* (BYOD) movement and the global investment in WiFi infrastructure went into overdrive. The canvas was now set for people to work anywhere because the tools for work were now untethered from the office.

How We Got Here: Hybrid Phase 2

In 2020 the pandemic brought about Hybrid 2 (aka forced remote). It wasn’t hybrid per se, but an unexpected extension of hybrid that many of us were already familiar with.

Because the infrastructure for flexible working had already been laid over the last 20 years – Hybrid 2 worked – white-collar workers kept their jobs (though often at the expense of their mental health) and companies themselves largely continued to grow. By the Summer of 2020, the conversation had already turned to thinking about and planning for what work would look like after the pandemic. It became clear that what companies and employees wanted above all else was flexibility.

Hybrid working

Hybrid phase 2 proved that employees could be trusted to get work done anywhere. Naturally, employees wanted to keep the flexibility and autonomy they had gained during the pandemic. It also proved that companies could operate without all their expensive real estate and that employees worked just as hard at home as in the office. Furthermore, companies now had access to talent outside the confines of an acceptable commute to the office.

This brings us to today as the pandemic moves to endemic, the stage is now set for the future of work to finally begin! Over half a billion people are now moving to hybrid – there hasn’t been a change to the way the world works like this since the Industrial Revolution. This change has huge implications for society, the environment, companies, and workers on a global scale. If we, as a society, get this right, everyone benefits.

Hybrid 1 provided the toolkit for hybrid working

Hybrid 2 proved that it could work under the most extreme conditions

..and now post-pandemic everyone wanted a third way!

After two years of build-up, the dawn of the future of work is now upon us – so what’s going to happen next as we transition out of the pandemic? Read on for the second part of the blog series here >>

How to build a recession-proof workplace

With inflation stubbornly clinging to a 40-year high, and fuel prices setting an all-time record, the economic recovery post-pandemic is looking bleaker than ever. The truth is, we all know that conditions are tough right now, but we also know this is an opportunity for businesses to build and grow – and here are 5 things you should be considering.

1. Reduce real estate, not your headcount

During times of turmoil, it comes as no surprise for businesses to focus on reducing costs, and traditionally, the quickest, most effective way to do this is to reduce headcount. But now the hybrid workforce has opened up another option for business leaders, which is to reduce real estate costs.

In fact, a recent Leesman study revealed that the demand for office space is about to decline substantially and they suggest one model of the future office is ‘twice the experience, half the space’. According to CBRE’s 2022 Survey, 52% of business leaders said they will reduce office space over the next three years because of hybrid work.

There is a real opportunity for businesses to adopt hybrid working and save on real estate costs, and understanding how their spaces are being used would be an obvious place to start. Here are a few ways to get started:

  1. Space usage data shows that Mondays and Fridays are traditionally slow days; consider closing spaces, floors, or whole buildings on these days to save costs on energy, cleaning, security, etc.
  2. Use a space management tool to gain insights into buildings, office neighborhoods, and occupancy in real-time, daily or weekly. The data can inform how best to even-out office traffic with reduced office spaces, by designating specific areas for certain teams on selected days.
  3. Enforce a proper desk hoteling process to get visibility on who has booked to come into the office (or who hasn’t shown up) to optimize availability and release unused desks.

Read more: How MOPAC Implementing desk booking with 83% adoption

2. Find opportunities to optimize your workspace

An economic crisis usually inspires change. Those that adapt tend to outperform those that don’t, and sadly one of the biggest mistakes business leaders are still making is to expect everything to return to the old ways of working.

Employees aren’t using spaces as they were before, they have become intentional about how they work, valuing time spent together with their teammates when it is purposeful, whether that means team building or project-specific. When office spaces are not fit for purpose, the impact of under-utilized spaces can become exponential, potentially costing businesses up to £12 billion for all of their wasted office spaces.

Reducing overall real estate is perhaps a short-term option, but the key approach business owners should take is finding the opportunities to optimize their workspaces in the long run – and that starts with understanding employee behaviour and preferences (ie. when they come into the office, what the purpose of their time in the office is, and with whom). Workplace optimization relies on accurate data, here are a few examples to get started:

  • Bookings data inform your office space demand, enabling managers to control which areas are available for use, and then make adjustments accordingly.
  • Analyze usage data to find areas with low occupancy for repurposing and redesigning.
  • Monitor historical occupancy trends and preferences to inform future space planning decisions for office renovations or relocations

The bottom line here is that your people are your greatest asset. Providing a fit-for-purpose space for them to thrive and flourish should be your main focus, and will put you on a path to success in the long run.

3. Make retaining your best talent a priority

Now, not having a major headcount reduction doesn’t mean your people will decide to stay. We are in the midst of a ‘workers economy,’ and people are more ready than ever to look for work elsewhere if they aren’t getting what they want. With over 40% of the global workforce considering leaving their company, a thoughtful approach to creating a great hybrid workplace experience will be critical for retaining talent.

Many companies are currently experimenting with their own hybrid work model that would offer the best of both worlds, remote and in-person. Employees talk in survey after survey about the benefits of work-life balance, and better overall mental health working from home. With record-high oil prices these days, people would be able to save on fuel by not having to travel to work every day, not to mention wasted commutes only knowing their teammates aren’t in the office (read more here on how to avoid that!).

So how can we create a better hybrid workplace experience for your people?

  • Create a purpose for your office space: Your people are going to be more intentional about where they work and with whom. To draw a dispersed workforce in, you need to reimagine the office to become a destination that people want to spend time in.
  • Trust should be at the heart of your hybrid workplace: A successful hybrid working culture relies on employers trusting that people will get on with their job away from the office, without being watched. Instead of telling people how to work (ie. the 3-2 hybrid schedule), we should empower them to make their own choices to do their best work.
  • Empower people with the tools they need to coordinate their work week efficiently: Being able to synchronize time with teammates, get visibility to available spaces easily, and access to amenities they need to ensure their in-person time is a smooth and stress-free experience.
  • Understanding your employee persona: We bet you’ve got some people who like to get their heads down and work away in silence, and others who are always networking and love being in the office. Then there are the work moms, eager interns, the list goes on. Understanding the different workplace personas in your organization will put you in a great position to create a hybrid working environment that works across the board. It will help you judge the most effective office setup for a great in-person experience, while understanding what support your people might need while working remotely.

Get our RTO survey toolkit to better understand how they prefer to work.

4. In-person for collaboration, remote for deep work

The past two years of the ‘WFH experiment’ have reshaped the way we think about work entirely. The truth is, you don’t need your people in the office every single day. According to Adam Grant, great collaborations and productivity don’t involve constant contact, they alternate between deep work and bursts of in-person interaction (aka hybrid working!)

Effective in-person collaboration is vital to any business, not only does it help teams work together towards their goals, but it can also make employees feel happier, more motivated, and strengthen organizational culture. When hybrid working is done right, it will help employees achieve the right balance between the two to maintain the flexibility benefits, while blending the creativity boost gained from in-person interactions.

From an operating costing standpoint, an effective hybrid working strategy combined with a productive remote workforce could generate savings without slowing your business down (potentially saving as high as $11,000 per employee, according to this study) – and here’s why:

  1. Reduce the need for a 1:1 desk/people ratio (only pay for the spaces you need!)
  2. More efficient use of meeting spaces, with meetings happening on team days and eliminating ‘room squatters’
  3. Reduction in travel, energy, and utility costs
  4. Save costs on office amenities such as coffee, food, paper, stationery, etc.
  5. People are more productive with work-life balance (results in higher retention!)


Source: Global Workplace Analytics

5. Outperform your competitors

“You cannot overtake 15 cars in sunny weather…. but you can when it’s raining.” Ayrton Senna


There is no doubt that hybrid is here to stay. But still, there is no one-size-fits-all when it comes to “the best hybrid working strategy”. Every company will have its own approach that works best for its people and culture. The key takeaway is that companies that embrace hybrid will outperform those that don’t, and that can be explained on three levels:

  • People: A successful hybrid working model will open up a wider pool of talent while maintaining the quality of life for your existing workforce (better productivity, better retention!)
  • Profit: A productive hybrid workforce combined with an effective hybrid working strategy could generate savings without slowing your business down.
  • Planet: A reduced real estate portfolio means lower energy emissions and overheads.

Hybrid working


Employee preferences will continue to evolve and present challenges for business leaders. Even at times of disruption, with the right mindset and strategy, companies can create right-sized, effective hybrid working environment that work for their people, and improve their bottom line. Organizations that get hybrid right will become the winner and outperform their competitors. Now it’s up to businesses to design work around their people, maintaining the flexibility they’ve become accustomed to, and enabling them to get their best work done, wherever they choose.

Introducing Personal Kadence: Finding the right time and place to collaborate easily

Remember before the pandemic when everyone would work at the same time and in the same place? Remember how easy it was to connect with the right people for the right project? 


Kadence Hybrid Operating System diagram schedules


Conclusion: Finding the right time to collaborate with your colleagues in the right place in remote working is hard….but it doesn’t have to be.

Today we’re introducing the secret sauce to Kadence’s Hybrid OS to help fix scheduling setbacks: Personal Kadence

So whether you’re trying to connect with the right people and you need to know where they’re working or to simply understand employee working rhythms you can now view your team’s individual schedules to help you plan.

Top 3 benefits

  • Easily collaborate at the right time by coordinating schedules
  • Improved employee performance by allowing them to choose where and when they work best
  • Make better plans ahead of time by understanding employee habits and space utilization

Available for free to everyone who uses Kadence. Personal Kadence provides valuable insights into time and location work preferences so you can facilitate your team’s best work.

Get started in 6 easy steps: 

Kadence Hybrid Operating System Onboarding 1. Set up your profile 

New enhanced profiles guide users through a simple sequence of pages, allowing them to add their bio, city, time zone, and workspace preferences.









2. Plot your Kadence 

From here you can also plot your weekly Kadence to inform your colleagues where you’ll be working.









3. Find a colleague

When you’re planning on connecting with someone in your team to collaborate on a project, simply go to the ‘Teams’ tab on your app, select the correct team and find your colleague to view their profile.








4. View team member profiles

Here you can see your colleagues’ workplace preferences, their bookings, and their weekly Kadence helping you know where they’ll be and when. 








5. Connect at the right time and place – make a booking! 

Now you know where your colleague is working, and when, you can plan to go into the office at the same time to collaborate. Go to the booking screen and select the time and day your colleague is in the office. After choosing your amenities simply find where they are on the interactive floor plan and book a space nearby – check out our Desk booking and Room scheduling solutions.







6. Set a weekly rhythm

Knowing how easy it is to find where and when your teammates are working, you can establish a weekly Kadence by aligning your Kadence with theirs. You can even repeat bookings for specific times and days saving you time.








Personal Kadence is available for free for all existing customers – check out our people coordination features to learn how Kadence helps bring your teams together to collaborate.

5 Mistakes To Avoid With Hybrid Working (and How to Fix It)

Many companies inadvertently sabotage their efforts at creating a great workplace experience. There are many indicators – difficulty to bring people back to the office, a lack of engagement, an increasing percentage of employees feeling lonely and isolated, to name a few.

Here are a few common mistakes and what to do instead.

Mistake #1: Not looking into what employees want from an office

People prefer to be in the office for at least a part of their workweek. But that alone isn’t enough to bring them in. The office needs to be a destination worth commuting to. That starts with a clear understanding of what constitutes a great employee experience in the office for your people. Without it, organizations will continue to struggle to bring people back in or worse – fight a wave of the Great Resignation.

The solution? Start by identifying the hybrid working personas in your organization. Our research on hybrid working reveals that most companies will have a combination of these four:

  • The Adapter who prefers the office to be a mix of coworking hubs and silent zones for focused work.
  • The Soloist who defaults to working remotely but will come in for a face-to-face meeting.
  • The Culturalist who wants the office to be a space for collaboration and socializing.
  • The Traditionalist who prefers to work in the office full-time, at their assigned desk.

Understanding the mix of hybrid workers in your organization will be invaluable for evaluating how much office space to keep and how to design it for maximum effect.

Mistake #2: Underestimate the power of chance meetings

You may have noticed – most hybrid workers expect a workplace that facilitates collaboration. And not just to break free from the digital overwhelm.

Time in the office is their one chance to socialize, build relationships, network, and establish bonds with their colleagues and managers. It’s so important that 52% of US and UK workers prefer meeting in the office and 70% of Millennials and Gen Z fear loneliness and isolation if remote work becomes permanent.

It’s not just about optimizing your real estate costs either. Businesses with highly engaged employees see 41% lower absenteeism and considerably higher profitability. If collaboration and chance meetings aren’t happening in your offices (or if they’re hard to organize), you’re effectively dealing with the consequences of a poor workplace experience.

To fix it, give people the tools they need to curate more social and collaboration opportunities to promote employee engagement:

  • Access to teammates’ schedules to facilitate spontaneous encounter, casual catch-ups and collaboration.
  • Ability to see who is in the office, where they are sitting and when to come in for those who are working remotely.
  • Create recurring team schedules to boost engagement and productivity

Mistake #3: Lack of visibility and transparency

Employees want to come to the office. The problem is figuring out when best to come in. It’s not enough to just have a solution to book a desk or a meeting room when the rest of it – comparing schedules to pick a meeting time, finding the right spaces with amenities they need and also communicating all that back in an email – taking hours out of their workweek.

This is one of the primary reasons why so many workplace managers struggle to bring people back to the office. It’s not that they don’t want to. It’s that setting up another video call is just so much easier and faster.

The solution? Take the guesswork out of planning ‘in office’ days with shared visibility of work schedules.

Imagine if your people needed no more than a few minutes to check their colleagues’ work schedules to plan their workday and know exactly when to expect feedback. If they could see where in the office their teammates or manager plan to be. Quickly and easily – on the go or at their desktop. No stress, no time wasted on commute. To achieve that, you’ll need:

  • Interactive floor plans offering real-time visibility into people’s movements. You can easily reserve a spot near your teammates and friends.
  • Shared work schedules, visualized all in one place to coordinate with your teammates’ working hours and locations for effective collaboration.
  • Recurring team meeting schedules that you can easily create and subscribe to.
  • Advanced team manager permissions like reserving desks or rooms on behalf of others to make the most of their ‘in office’ days.

No second-guessing your office days, annoyingly time-consuming meeting coordination, or time and money lost commuting to a half-empty office. 

Mistake #4: Unscalable space booking process (…excel sheets)

One of the biggest drivers of employee anxiety about returning to the office is fear of not finding a desk that matches their needs – at the time they need it. A fear that’s fuelled by a complicated desk booking process that’s buggy or difficult to use, or an excel spreadsheet that is simply incomprehensible.

Employees need more than a solution to book a desk or a room. They want to be able to easily locate a workspace that matches their needs for the day.

To implement an effective desk booking system, that can be achieved with:

  • Easy user experience. Your desk booking app should be a joy to use and a tool that saves time and improves the employee experience.
  • Real-time view of space availability (with a floor plan view) updated automatically and showing coworkers in the office.
  • Well-rounded safety measures with the ability block/unblock spaces, self-certification, and touchless mobile check-in.
  • Auto desk release to improve desk availability by releasing back to the pool workspaces that haven’t been checked into within a set time limit.
  • Scalability. With a comprehensive integrations and directory sync, you won’t have to worry about business growth negatively impacting your space management solution or the quality of the user experience.

Mistake #5: Without a process for optimization

So you’ve repurposed and refurbished your offices. The numerous employee surveys were a bit confusing (since their answers kept changing) but you’ve taken those into account. A sigh of relief. You’re done, right? You’re not. Employees’ needs and expectations, the way we work will continue to evolve.

Don’t believe us? Consider this:

  • Microsoft discovered that more than half of its employees were spending less than ¼ of their time in the office, compared to their original plans.
  • Trivago, a travel agency, spent months testing different scenarios for hybrid working and office setup until they found the optimal one.

The only way to offer a continuously great workplace experience is through a well-established process of data analysis and optimization.

In design thinking, it’s a well-established fact – people often don’t know what they really want until they try it in practice. Hence, the prototyping phase. You need a combination of both: employee surveys and tools that deliver granular space usage insights you need to easily put into action. That includes:

  • Space usage data to help you
    • identify the busiest times and areas and forecast demand;
    • assess the efficiency of the workplace setup;
    • identify opportunities to cut real estate;
    • evaluate work patterns and adjust accordingly.
  • Flexible policy settings that allow you to: 
    • change floor plans, add or remove desks on the fly;
    • A/B test workplace designs;
    • eliminate zombie bookings;
    • respond to changing conditions in real time.

With this level of actionable data, you’re prepared for any future scenarios. And let’s be honest, managing the workplace experience is a lot easier when you don’t have to do everything yourself, manually.

The Human-Centric Workplace

Before we discuss what a human-centric workplace is, we must define what it is to be human. From poets, philosophers, anthropologists, religious bodies, scientists, politicians, and artists. Despite the efforts, the answers are diverse and inconclusive, because believing in a single answer would create silos between the brain, emotion, the body and so forth; we must consider the many angles that make up the whole human.

What does it mean to be a human at work?

Aristotle claimed that to be human meant having a goal, a purpose, to belong, to live a happy life. Karl Marx believed that humans are social creatures and can therefore only develop with a society. Anthropologist, Clifford Geertz, refers to human nature as unfinished because we require culture to complete us, and therefore it is through the interactions between individuals and their settings, between the natural and social worlds, the symbols and structures determine what it means to be human.

In the early days of our 300,000-year human evolution, work was simple: we worked to eat and avoid being eaten. Meaning and purpose came from elsewhere, whether it be spirituality, art, religion or science. As humankind has evolved, our identities, such as parent, friend, nationality, religious beliefs, hobbies, and our careers have become intertwined.

Work is no longer about survival; work has become an extension of our identity. Social connectedness, culture, belonging, purpose, the ability to think – these are not things that simply stop when somebody is working. Neither does our lifestyle, our responsibilities, worries, fears or anxieties. Yet somehow, we have been hooked into believing that when at work, we must dimmish such humanity and appear robotic.

People are not just cogs in your organization’s machine, merely existing to drive your organization’s financial success. People do not want to be managed, controlled, and worn down. The employee experience has evolved and continues to do so.

Despite the initial panic following the mass exodus out of the workplace, thanks to the hard work of the workplace ninjas, technology, conscious leadership and a ton of resilience, the world is functioning; the impossible became workable. Hybrid working is the talk of the town, not many would argue against work not being somewhere we go but what we do and why we do it.

There is still space in your employee experience for the physical workplace, and its important space that needs to be used to drive connectedness, collaboration and belonging. We have been presented with a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to reimagine work and the workplace.

Understanding the ‘why’ of your workplace

Let’s drop all the labels, the core at all of this is flexible working practices, agile mindsets, ABW environments utilising smart technology. This isn’t about a free for all or looking at what your competitors do….or what’s being said on LinkedIn. We must understand the why of your workplace – what role does the physical workplace play in enabling the organizational purpose and for people to thrive?

We must capture granular-level detail to really understand the why of the workplace and the why and how of our people, before prescribing the where. A place where people thrive is a place where people know and connect with the purpose, are enabled to treated like human. The Human-Centric Workplace is about highlighting that we can do better, and we must do better.

Keen to find out how to build a better working experience for your people? Join the discussion with Simone in the upcoming webinar! 


Safely manage your team’s return in the New Year

If you’re planning a safe return to the office for your team in the New Year, it’s important to put the right steps in place to ensure your team can be productive and safe while they work and collaborate. 

With new variants and added uncertainty, there will continue to be ebbs and flows, ups and downs, as companies open up their offices again for Hybrid…which is exactly why companies are turning to Kadence.

The solution needs to be simple to use and fast to rollout, and now with Kadence it is. With all the essential tools you need in one place, you can quickly and effectively make sure your entire office is secure, and safe for your employees to return – here’s how.

Simple health sign-in – Ensure a safe and secure re-entry to the office

Admins can set health screening guidelines to align with their company’s health and safety policies. Determine employee health instructions and include anything you want from vaccine mandates to wearing a mask. Release desk bookings for no-shows and allow employees to book spaces up to 3 months in advance. Allow employees and visitors to self-certify before checking in to their reserved spaces from 1hr, 2hrs, or 24hrs of their arrival and prevent employees from checking in if they have not self-certified. With Kadence simple health sign-in, you set the parameters to keep your people safe. Find out more about our visitor management solution.


Self certify Workspace Scheduling Software

Team contact tracing – Manage people’s safety in the office

Access your team’s schedule in the Teams Activity overview to see when and where employees are working and see who they’re working with on the interactive floorplan. Know which spaces they’ve booked now and in the future and block out particular spaces or neighborhoods to implement social distance space booking for added safety.

Find out more about our people coordination solution.


People coordination - Workspace Scheduling Software

Touchless experience – An all-in-one booking tool, all-in-one place

Employees can also book any space that’s available either near colleagues or anywhere on the floorplan with the right amenities they need for the day eg. Sit-stand desk, monitors, keyboard, etc. Reserve a private room for a group meeting, book a parking space for their ride, and admins can book on behalf of others all within the mobile app booking flow.

Find out more about our desk scheduling & room scheduling solutions.



Oversee capacity limits – Rich space usage insights for easy decision making

Easily understand space usage insights so you can set building and floor capacity limits and re-assign employees to under-used space. Control booking permission levels to anyone you choose and book on behalf of others helping you bring your team together on particular days.


Desk Management Software



Check out this post to learn how to set up self-certification to help meet the U.S. vaccination mandate requirements.

Interested to see how Kadence can help bring your team back to the office safely? Book a demo with one of our team today to find out more.

The Space Management Challenges Your Return To Office Plan Must Solve

How do your people feel about returning to the office? How do you? Putting together a return to the office plan that delivers a safe, efficient, and agile space management process is an immensely complex task.

Health and safety measures at your workplace

People worry about their health and wellbeing. Close to a half (39%) of American and British workers say they’ll no longer use shared kitchen areas, cups, and utensils or make coffee and tea rounds in the office. A quarter (24%) won’t even use shared elevators.

You need to make sure workspaces are cleaned and sanitized properly, ideally, as soon as they’ve been released back to the pool. That would help you optimize the workplace experience for the employee as well as maximize the use of company real estate.

What’s more, the global health situation and government regulations will likely continue to change. There may be potential outbreaks in the office requiring you to adjust its layout and restrict employee access at a moment’s notice. You need to be prepared to act swiftly in all of these scenarios.

Desk and room booking process for your hybrid workplace

Just walking into the office and grabbing a desk for the day is no longer acceptable. Nor is a manually updated excel sheet of desk bookings and the employees working in the office a long-term solution.

Yet both you and your people need visibility over who’s coming in and when. A quarter (25%) of US and UK workers worry about finding the right kind of workspaces once the office doors open. It’s not just a question of choosing between a silent zone and a collaboration hub.

Can your plan for returning to the office solve these three challenges?

People want to:

  • book a desk that’s close to the amenities they’ll need that day;
  • have it available at different times to optimize their productivity cadence and maintain a healthy work-life balance;
  • be sure the colleagues they’re looking forward to meeting will be in the office.

Your team managers will also appreciate a more efficient way of organizing hybrid team meetings than a half hour back and forth via Slack or email to pick the right time, book a room, and check the tech they need will be there. Combine that with health and safety concerns, and there’s little wonder many suffer from anxiety about returning to the office.

Can your return-to-office plan solve these challenges? Yes, it can. In fact, it’s crucial that it does if you want to nurture collaboration and motivate your people to come to the office for that face-to-face time that’s so crucial for productivity and mental wellbeing.

Three questions to answer in your plan for welcoming people back to the workplace

1. Will you choose a phased approach or open up to everyone at the same time?

There are various internal and external factors that may impact this decision or be affected by it, including government-imposed restrictions, company budget, internal approval processes, and the building’s cleaning protocols.

2. What’s the main role of the office in a hybrid work context?

Survey your employees to understand what they value most in a workplace and what they need to perform at their best. That will likely include different activity-based office neighborhoods, such as social and collaboration hubs and silent zones. Space usage insights will help you to further optimize the office layout.

3. What do you need to look for in a space management app?

The success of any space management system starts and ends with user adoption. So choose a workplace app that’s a fit for the company as well as the people.

Look for:

  • Ease of use with excellent UX and UI across devices
  • Useful features like smart suggestions, single sign-on, and integrations with your existing tech tools, apps and software
  • Support for coordinating individual and team cadences for easy collaboration.
  • Well-rounded safety measures covering self-certification, automated cleaning updates, and touchless mobile check-in.
  • Agile space management features such as customizable layouts and flexible policy settings that allow you to instantly block desks, office neighborhoods, or an entire building.

To uncover the exact steps to implementing a safe and efficient desk booking process in a hybrid workplace, download our Complete Guide to Building a Return to the Office Plan.