The 2021 pandemic forced companies to adopt remote work to protect employee health. Company leaders soon learned, often to their surprise, that remote work also provided significant benefits. Many organizations saw increased employee engagement, productivity, and a stronger sense of belonging. These benefits happened even though the move to remote work was not focused on improving the employee experience. Moreover, the emphasis on physical isolation eliminated periodic in-person meetings that are a critical component of effective remote work arrangements.
While people missed in-person interactions and access to workspaces outside of their homes, they welcomed having more control over their time and not having to commute to work every day. As one SAP customer shared after implementing remote work, “we don’t want to go back to normal. We want to go forward to better.” And better means permanently embracing some hybrid mixture of remote and on-site work.
But the after-effects of the last year and a half as well as the best path toward a more hybrid world of work varies across organizations. In the past six months I have talked with scores of SAP customers about different approaches, and read several hundred articles and studies about remote and hybrid work. Based on this