The vast majority of companies still don't have a hybrid work strategy

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Despite all the time spent working from home during the pandemic, a new study from AT&T has revealed that the vast majority of businesses lack a detailed hybrid work strategy.

To compile their new Future of Work study, the US mobile carrier and Dubber Corporation Limited surveyed 303 US-based respondents between October and November of last year to discover that 72 percent of organizations don't currently have a hybrid work strategy while 76 percent lack the right key performance indicators (KPIs) to support hybrid working models.

Still though, the research shows that hybrid work will be the standard operating model across industries by 2024 according to 81 percent of respondents with slightly more than half (56%) of work done offsite. There also still exists tension between what employees and organizations want as 86 percent of employees prefer a hybrid work model but 64 percent believe their organization would rather use a on-premise work model.

SVP of marketing at AT&T Business, Alicia Dietsch provided further insights on the results of its Future of Work study in a press release, saying:

“There’s been a non-reversible shift in the way business is done thanks to the constraints of COVID-19. It’s clear that a successful talent program now requires a hybrid work policy, but that policy needs to be supported by a strategic tech-first cultural reset, to ensure business growth and competition. Firms need to ask themselves if they have the in-house expertise to achieve this, or whether it’s now time to go beyond a partner in remote infrastructure rollout to a partner in tech-first remote business strategy.”

Challenges to effective hybrid work 

Last year represented a major shift in how companies conducted business with just under a quarter (24%) of those surveyed saying that their employees worked onsite. Before the pandemic, these non-traditional work models were often viewed as employee perks but they are quickly becoming the norm.

When it came to the barriers to successful hybrid work, respondents said that lack of workplace innovation, insufficient oversight and cultural shifts presented the biggest challenges. However, participants believe that investments in strategy, building culture remotely and the application of AI in critical business use-cases can help firms successfully transition to a hybrid-first work environment.

Chief experience officers also identified maintaining employee oversight, losing institutional/tribal knowledge and sustaining company culture as other challenges to effective hybrid work. Despite these challenges, mass adoption of new work models has show to be effective with 79 percent of firms believing their employees have been productive though only 45 percent were confident that in employee innovation during the period of the study.

Although hybrid work certainly has its ups and downs, one benefit that can't be overlooked is how adopting a hybrid work model can help attract young talent with 100 percent of those surveyed in agreement on this point.

Anthony Spadafora

After working with the TechRadar Pro team for the last several years, Anthony is now the security and networking editor at Tom’s Guide where he covers everything from data breaches and ransomware gangs to the best way to cover your whole home or business with Wi-Fi. When not writing, you can find him tinkering with PCs and game consoles, managing cables and upgrading his smart home.