31 October 2022

Employers still find it hard to believe that hybrid work can still provide the same pre-pandemic productivity levels, according to new data from research carried out by MIcrosoft.

It is evident that organisations will have a competitive advantage in today’s dynamic economic climate if their workforces are flourishing according to Satya Nadella, chairwoman and CEO of Microsoft. She furtjer said that a new strategy is required to meet an employee experience and culture that meet the needs of todays distributed, digitally connected workforce.

The findings of the Microsoft study among 20,000 individuals across 11 countries and an analysis of billions of Microsoft 365 productivity signals hint to three key actions that companies should take: put a stop to productivity phobia, accept that people turn up to work for one other, and re-hire existing staff.

Stop Productivity Phobia

85% of business executives admitted that the transition to hybrid work has made it difficult to trust that workers are being productive. On the other hand, according to a Microsoft study, 87% of workers answered that their productivity at work has increased. This is also supported by increased productivity signals throughout the Microsoft 365 platform.

Workers feel it is critical that their leaders assist them in prioritising their workload

Alternatively, 81% of workers feel it is critical that their leaders assist them in prioritising their workload. This is indicative that managers should put a stop to worrying about whether their staff is working enough and start assisting them in concentrating on the job that matters.

Furthermore, the study shows that 48% of workers and 53% of managers experience burnout at work. This demonstrates the need for prioritisation that should go beyond merely rearranging a long to-do list.

People turn up to work for one other

Rebuilding social capital can be an effective motivator to get individuals back to work.

Employees confirmed they would visit the workplace more regularly if they knew their immediate team members or their friends at worker would be there

According to data published by Microsoft, individuals go to work to make up for what they miss most: the social interaction of being among other people.

In fact, 78% of corporate leaders and 73% of employees believe that they need more motivation to go to work rather than for the sake of meeting company expectations. The study suggests that businesses that do not work to restore and strengthen team relations risk missing out on enticing and keeping top talent.

Additionally, workers said they would visit the workplace more regularly if they knew their immediate team members or their friends at worker would be there (73% and 74%, respectively).

Surprisingly, maybe because many believed otherwise, the young are especially more eager to use the office to integrate themselves into their working environment and feel more connected to their co-workers.

The workplace is not the only solution. The capability to communicate effectively and authentically is one of the most important abilities, according to 96% of decision-makers and 95% of workers, even if technology is essential for establishing and keeping connections.

Re-hire existing staff members

Microsoft’s study further demonstrated that if employees are unable to learn and progress, they would quit. According to 55% of respondents, switching jobs is the greatest method for them to advance their careers. It goes from 51% among lower- and entry-level employees to 66% among upper- and mid-level managers and 69% among executives as people advance through the ranks at their organisation.

There is a definite link between learning and retention

It would seem apparent to make it simpler for employees to locate their next chance for advancement within the firm, but evidence reveals that internal mobility is not given enough priority by organisations.

With 76% of Gen Z and millennials indicating that this is a goal, younger generations are also more inclined to desire to be their own boss.

Additionally, there is a definite link between learning and retention: 76% of workers believe they would stay with their employer longer if they could receive more help for their professional growth. Opportunities to learn and grow are now regarded first among drivers of a great workplace culture by employees, up from ninth place in 2019.

This article was first published by Times of Malta online