Looking for a flexible work solution that combines the best work-from-home and in-office benefits? In 2023, hybrid work is the answer.
Offering more flexibility, autonomy, and balance than traditional working models, hybrid work is an increasingly popular choice among tech professionals and remote workers alike. In fact, Gartner forecasts that 39% of global knowledge workers will work hybrid by the end of 2023.
In this blog post, we’ll explore the hype around hybrid work. We’ll walk through what hybrid work is, why it’s becoming the new norm for digital workers, and which jobs lend themselves to hybrid work.
- What is hybrid work?
- Why hybrid work is the future of work
- The benefits of hybrid work
- The 5 best hybrid work jobs
- Key takeaways
- Frequently asked questions (FAQ) about hybrid work
1. What is hybrid work?
Hybrid work, also known as blended work, is an increasingly popular working model across modern industries. In this style of work, employees have the flexibility to work from multiple locations, including an office, a remote location, or a combination of both.
If you’ve spent any time browsing job descriptions, you’ve likely seen “hybrid work” listed in the benefits section and wondered what exactly they mean by that.
The truth is, there’s no one size fits all definition of hybrid work—and the nature of hybrid work models can look very different depending on the company.
Some companies have a physical office where employees can work from when they want to but they aren’t obliged to. Other companies have set days that employees are required to be in the office, which could be anything from one day a week to a few days a month.
In some cases, employees are required to spend most of their time in the office but are allowed a set number of days at home.
To complicate things further, a hybrid work agreement can also mean that some employees work remotely, some in-house, and some mixed.
For many, hybrid work offers the best of both worlds, providing employees with the flexibility and autonomy of remote work while still allowing for in-person collaboration and access to physical resources that people might need to perform their jobs.
2. Why hybrid work is the future of work
Hybrid work offers a flexible, adaptable model that meets employers’ and employees’ evolving needs.
After COVID-19 accelerated the adoption of remote and hybrid work models, many companies experienced the benefits of these models in terms of productivity, cost savings, and employee satisfaction first-hand.
Hybrid work models have also allowed companies to retain their top talent while continuing to cultivate a distinct working culture that employees can benefit from in person.
Today, hybrid work is everywhere. But what about tomorrow?
A recent study by Zippia revealed that:
- 74% of U.S. companies are using or plan to implement a permanent hybrid work model,
- 44% of U.S. employees prefer a hybrid work model, and
- 63% of high-growth companies use a “productivity anywhere” hybrid work model.
As the global workforce evolves, and remote work becomes more mainstream, hybrid work is likely to become an even more popular way of working in the future.
With leading companies like Google and Salesforce embracing hybrid work, a growing number of companies are likely to follow suit.
It’s safe to say that hybrid work isn’t going anywhere any time soon. We’ll dive deeper into why in the next section.
3. The benefits of hybrid work
As we explored in the previous section, hybrid work is here to stay. Let’s take a closer look at some of the key drivers behind the hybrid work revolution.
Enhanced collaboration is one of the most compelling benefits of hybrid work; allowing teammates to effectively exchange ideas, provide feedback, and solve problems together in real time (with no network connectivity problems getting in the way).
In addition to being particularly helpful for collaborative workshops (i.e., brainstorming sessions, whiteboarding, and group discussions,) regular in-person collaboration can help foster a sense of community and teamwork—ultimately strengthening relationships among team members.
Between those in-person sessions, however, hybrid work also allows for opportunities to work independently and privately, for better focus and reduced distractions. It’s all about balance.
Access to perks and resources
Transitioning to hybrid work means gaining access to a wealth of physical and virtual resources that make their jobs easier and more efficient than ever before (plus the added benefit of using someone else’s coffee or printer ink for a change).
Employees can take advantage of office equipment, meeting rooms, and other physical resources when they need them, while also benefiting from a wealth of virtual tools and resources when working remotely.
Some companies also offer perks and incentives for in-office work, like free lunches, parking, or gym passes.
In the absence of in-person interaction, it’s easy for contributions to go unnoticed and achievements to go unrecognized. Being regularly present and visible in your office provides more opportunities to showcase your skills and abilities to the team.
This increased visibility helps build stronger relationships with colleagues and managers and can also be a game-changer for professional development.
By getting face time with decision-makers and participating in meaningful conversations, you can expand your network and make connections that’ll position you for future opportunities.
Better work-life balance
If you crave a healthy work-life balance, then hybrid work might just be the solution you’ve been looking for.
With a hybrid work setup, you can avoid rush hour commutes, take care of errands during the day, spend quality time with loved ones without compromising on work commitments, and save money that you put towards hobbies or enjoyment.
On the other hand, regular face-to-face interactions with teammates can help combat feelings of loneliness and disconnection associated with remote work and foster a sense of camaraderie and community among colleagues.
This balance can result in increased job satisfaction, better mental health, and improved overall well-being.
Hybrid work has been hailed for being inclusive and accessible, allowing for a range of flexible work options that accommodate individual needs and preferences. This especially benefits people with disabilities or caregiving responsibilities, including parents and neurodivergent folk.
When employees have more autonomy over where (and how) they work, it also leads to a natural shift away from traditional in-office cliques or exclusive workgroups.
As well as promoting creativity and the exchange of ideas, this allows for more interaction between employees who might not typically interact—or would generally be more siloed. The result? A welcoming environment that celebrates individual needs, preferences, and perspectives.
4. The 5 best hybrid work jobs
Now we’ve got a handle on hybrid work (and why it’s so popular), let’s look at five of the best career paths that are compatible with hybrid work.
UX designers are responsible for designing user-friendly digital experiences that are as functional as they are visually appealing. UX design is a multidisciplinary field which lends itself fantastically to hybrid work.
Hybrid work allows for collaboration with multiple stakeholders, including developers, project managers, and UI designers, in the form of workshops, whiteboard, and card sorting.
UX designers can also successfully execute many aspects of the job remotely, especially with the rise of remote user research tools. Remote work also means UX designers can knuckle down with fewer distractions.
To learn more, check out our guide to becoming a remote UX designer.
Digital marketing is an incredibly versatile career choice encompassing a wide range of skills, from SEO and email marketing, to paid campaigns and social media.
You can perform these skills from anywhere with an internet connection, meaning collaboration, brainstorming, and creative thinking can happen just as easily across from a colleague as they can over Zoom.
One thing to note is that digital marketing requires constant iteration to keep up with emerging trends, which is easier to execute when you’re in the room with like-minded creatives.
Product management involves a mix of creativity, strategic thinking, and collaboration—so it’s no surprise that it’s a job perfectly suited for a ‘mix’ of in-person and remote work.
In product management, you get to work with a variety of people, from designers to engineers, and collaborate on creating and delivering successful products, making it a natural fit for hybrid work.
Whether you’re brainstorming new product ideas, collaborating with developers and designers, or presenting to stakeholders, product management is a job that can be done just as effectively from your home office as it can from the boardroom.
Web development is highly compatible with hybrid work. In fact, many web developers already work in hybrid work environments.
This is mainly due to the digital-first nature of the work; most web developers only require a computer and internet connection to do their job effectively, which they can easily access from anywhere.
Web developers also work closely with designers, product managers, and other stakeholders, and often find themselves having to do quick, urgent problem-solving and de-bugging—making hybrid work ideal.
You can read more in our guide to becoming a remote web developer.
Data analysts synthesize data, and distill their findings into actionable next steps businesses can take to stay ahead of the curve. Like web development, data analytics relies heavily on digital tools and technologies, making it well-suited for hybrid work.
With the availability of cloud-based data analysis tools, data analysts can easily access and analyze data from anywhere.
They also need to regularly present and talk through their research with senior team members, which is best done in person and without the interference of lagging internet.
5. Key takeaways
Hybrid work is a reality for many organizations, and it’s quickly becoming the preferred working model for employers and employees alike.
It’s no surprise, given its appealing benefits—from improved work-life balance to increased productivity and engagement.
Many see hybrid work as the gateway to more inclusive and accessible ways of working; while also helping employees who might be struggling with loneliness or isolation.
Whatever your motivations for pursuing hybrid work, it’s never been easier to make the switch. Between the stacks of hybrid companies and plenty of hybrid-friendly career options, you’ll be enjoying the best of both worlds in no time!
To learn more about the changing face of work, check out these related blog posts:
- 17 key benefits of remote work and for employers and employees
- What is the future of work? The top future of work concepts
- 7 workplace trends to look out for in 2023
Frequently asked questions (FAQ) about hybrid work
1. What is hybrid vs remote work?
Hybrid work refers to a work arrangement that combines elements of both in-person and remote work. It allows employees to divide their time between working from a physical office location and working from a remote location such as a home or a coworking space.
2. What is an example of hybrid work?
An example of hybrid work is when employees spend a portion of their workweek at the office, collaborating with colleagues and attending meetings in person, while also having the flexibility to work remotely for the remaining days. This allows for a balance between face-to-face interaction and the convenience of remote work.
3. What is a hybrid work schedule?
A hybrid work schedule refers to the specific arrangement of days or hours that an employee works in a hybrid work environment. It typically involves a combination of days spent working at the office and days spent working remotely. The schedule can vary depending on the needs of the employee and the organization.
4. Is hybrid work healthy?
Hybrid work can offer various health benefits to employees. It provides a better work-life balance, reduces commuting time and stress, and allows employees to create a comfortable and customized work environment. However, it’s important for individuals to maintain a structured routine, prioritize self-care, and establish boundaries between work and personal life to ensure overall well-being.
5. How many days is hybrid working?
The number of days for hybrid working can vary depending on the organization’s policies and the specific needs of the employee. In some cases, it may involve working remotely for two or three days a week and spending the remaining days at the office. However, there is no fixed standard, and the exact number of days can differ from company to company.