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“You can go on all day about hybrid work, but it’s not going to be solved,” one panelist said.

Claudia Adrien

April 3, 2023

4 Min Read
HP
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The discussion of hybrid work is constantly evolving with no one-size-fits-all strategy for companies employing it.

At last week’s Enterprise Connect in Orlando, Florida, conference attendees listened to a panel of experts discuss how they’ve implemented flexible work models “post-pandemic” for employees.

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Enterprise Connect’s Eric Krapf

Eric Krapf, general manager and program co-chair of Enterprise Connect, moderated the session.

“You can go on all day about hybrid work, but it’s not going to be solved,” Krapf said.

However, panelists such as Stacy Foster, vice president, Technology Hub at Mastercard, offered their best tips to get employees enthused about returning to the office, at least part time. Foster said that employing a work culture that exemplifies care for employees can go a long way to help them come back.

Foster added that Mastercard has culture teams to come up with incentives to get people back into the office.

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Mastercard’s Stacy Foster

“[Employees] are sitting in the car or jumping on public transit to get to the office,” she said. “What should be the culture when they get there?”

Effortless Technologies

Mark Grosvenor, CTO at global insurance broker NFP, agreed. His company has 95% of its employees working a hybrid model.

“You don’t want them coming in disappointed and disgruntled because that’ll carry over their interactions with not only your employees but with your clients,” he said.

Outlining the purpose why they need to come in is extremely important, Grosvenor added.

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NFP’s Mark Grosvenor

“I think exposure is also extremely important. I think from the standpoint of as a leadership team, if the leaders aren’t in the office, it’s awfully hard for the rank and file to understand why they have to be there,” he said.

It may be challenging for employees to understand why coming into work is necessary. Grosvenor said collaboration tools are “fantastic.” Some would agree these technologies are light-years ahead of where they were just five years ago.

“They still don’t get [employees] the opportunity to learn something in the [office] hallway that they wouldn’t have picked up on otherwise,” he said.

However, when employees do work between the office and home, it’s critical to have tools in place that can easily travel with workers.

Grosvenor said that at the start of the pandemic, clients would call employees on their cellphones, crossing a line between work and personal life. So his company used a RingCentral app that employees could put on their phones. They continued to have mobility with the use of their personal cell phone, but work calls would still come through on a work number.

“It goes a long way in making sure that our employees feel like they don’t have to carry multiple devices … and continually have new things to log into,” Grosvenor said.

Setting Expectations for Hybrid Work

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Amicus Therapeutics’ Gary LaSasso

For Gary LaSasso, senior director, global IT at Amicus Therapeutics, he said his company’s strategy is video-first at the office.

“We want to equip as many spaces as you can with video, whether it’s the workstation, or conference rooms,” LaSasso said. “Our goal was to connect every employee any place, any time, any device. We want to allow that seamless interaction so that you really can connect all employees. [Our organization] keeps expanding that to more rooms, more spaces.”

This was especially necessary because the company has continued to rapidly hire for remote work across the country. That in mind, coming up with clear expectations for employees about hybrid work needs to happen at the beginning of the hiring stage, Foster said.

“[There’s always] a discussion about the role requirements of the positions, the needs of the employees and how often they should come to work,” she said. “Our team agreements are all fully transparent.”

Want to contact the author directly about this story? Have ideas for a follow-up article? Email Claudia Adrien or connect with her on LinkedIn.

 

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About the Author(s)

Claudia Adrien

Claudia Adrien is a reporter for Channel Futures where she covers breaking news. Prior to Informa, she wrote about biosecurity and infectious disease for a national publication. She holds a degree in journalism from the University of Florida and resides in Tampa.

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