What is a Hybrid Workplace?

Author: Tyler Cox


As workers begin returning to the office after more than a year of remote work, both businesses and their employees are coming to a realization: Allowing the staff to work from home brought about a host of benefits that nearly everyone would like to continue.


For business, having staff work from home allowed them to reduce the amount of office space they needed to lease as well as lower rates of absenteeism and reduced turnover. For workers, it meant improved morale, reduced commuting costs, and a savings of the time required to get back and forth to work.


So as the world seeks a return to normalcy, some changes brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic will likely remain with us for the foreseeable future. And while many companies are encouraging workers to return to the office, some would like to retain the benefits remote work offered. That’s led to the rise of innovative workplace strategies and a new business model: The hybrid workplace.


The new normal

Simply put, a hybrid workplace is one where employees who can do their jobs remotely spend part of their workweek in the office and part of the time working from home.


A hybrid working environment lets companies address one of the critical challenges of remote work: the lack of face-to-face time that helps build camaraderie among the team.


One hybrid office definition has employees on a set schedule of when they come into the office and when they’ll be working remotely. That method allows companies to predict their needs to ensure social distancing and planning for office space. Adopting a “hot desk” or “desk hoteling” office strategy lets workers share resources such as desk space, huddle rooms, and conferencing solutions.


Another hybrid office concept allows workers to choose when they come into the office. That lets workers build their work schedules around their personal lives. For example, they stay home when a child is sick or when a repair person is scheduled to stop by. A third model has employees choose when they come into the office, with the stipulation that they’re required to come in for events such as weekly meetings and project kickoffs.

Setting the stage for success

Along with the benefits to the bottom line, such as lower office expenses and a reduction in turnover, the flexibility of a hybrid office allows companies to meet the needs of a varied workforce. 


At the beginning of their career, younger workers may value the networking and collaboration that comes with being in the office, and as such, may prefer to spend less time working from home. More experienced workers, on the other hand, may already have established those connections and are more comfortable with being away from the office.


Still, there are some considerations when it comes to operating under a hybrid model. Chief among them is ensuring workers have outfitted their home offices with the tools they need to maintain productivity.


Because of that, it may be advantageous for companies to supply workers with the communication tools they need to succeed. That’s where Yamaha Unified Communications can help.


Yamaha Unified Communications provides audio solutions for in-person, remote, and hybrid meetings. Customizable audio solutions ensure that all employees, whether they are in office or working from home, can experience impressive audio quality.


For medium and large hybrid meeting spaces with a combination of in-person and remote employees, we recommend two solutions. The YVC-1000 is a USB Speakerphone and Bluetooth Conference phone that features separate microphone and speaker units, is certified for both Zoom and Microsoft Teams, and is ideal for up to 40 people. The ADECIA solution, certified with Barco Clickshare, is a family of products featuring ceiling microphones, line array speakers, and tabletop microphones to create an easy-install, highly-configurable audio environment that sounds great for both in-person and virtual environments.


For crystal-clear sound on weekly conference calls, there’s the YVC-200 Personal or Work-From H-Home speakerphone. The YVC-200 is designed to offer professional-quality audio while connected to your laptop, phone, or tablet. For larger groups or shared spaces, there’s the YVC-330 Portable USB & Bluetooth Conference phone. With built-in SoundCap technology, this speakerphone eliminates background noise from noisy working environments to allow participants on the other end of the call to focus on the conversation.


For more advice on the right equipment to help implement a hybrid office strategy, reach out to the experts at Yamaha UC. Click here to see how we can help!