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The pandemic has fundamentally changed how we all live, learn, and work. As we begin to recover from the pandemic and plan our return to the office, many organizations are rethinking the future of work:
- Over 80% of managers surveyed expect to have more flexible work from home policies post-pandemic.
- More than 70% of the employees and managers reported a desire to continue working from home at least part-time.
Source: Harris Poll survey commissioned by Microsoft, May 2020
At Microsoft, we believe the future of work is hybrid. The essence of hybrid work is extreme flexibility, in terms of where and when people work. Organizations are creating new policies that empower employees to spend some portions of their week working from home, as well as flexible working hours. While certain measures may need to be put in place to optimize hybrid workplace functions, there is no turning back when it comes to the future of work. A large majority of people prefer a mix of remote-work and office-work instead of a return to the traditional work model, or permanent all-remote work.
As we return to the workplace, moving to a hybrid work model will not just be about continuing the great work-from-home experiment many of us have been participating in for almost 12 months now. We will need to change our behavior by developing new skills and habits to help us stay healthy, finding new ways to engage and stay connected as we adopt this new way of working. It is going to take a collective effort for organizations to make a successful transition to a hybrid workplace.
There are big changes ahead for those of us moving to a hybrid work model. Like any organizational change initiative, we must be thoughtful about how we guide people through the journey. If not, organizations face risks such as decreased productivity, increased turnover, or employees that are just not engaged.
To help our customers lead their organization’s transition to a hybrid workplace we have launched a SharePoint site template on the SharePoint look book called the Workplace transformation site as well as new end-user training to help employees learn new habits and skills that support hybrid work.
Workplace transformation site
The Workplace transformation site template helps organizations:
- Inspire employees on the new possibilities the hybrid workplace offers.
- Provide employees with the information, resources, and support they will need to buy-in and adopt the new way of working.
- Prepare employees for a successful transition to a hybrid workplace with a change journey checklist and quick tips.
The Workplace transformation site features:
- A fully configured and customizable hybrid work transformation site built on SharePoint communication sites: The Workplace transformation site brings together information architecture, pre-populated content, site design and webparts to help inform and support employees through the transition to a new way of working. The site can be customized to add your organization’s content and to align with its look and feel.
- Hybrid work checklist: Any organizational change initiative can be stressful for employees. Help your employees through the change process by providing them a curated change journey checklist. Guide employees through organizational changes with a customizable activity list of tasks such as required training courses and learning events.
- Inspirational help content: Understanding how the day-to-day workplace will change in the new hybrid model is key to helping onboard employees. The Workplace transformation site includes “quick tip” guides for employees and managers, and a week in the hybrid workplace content.
- Support resources: As employees’ transition to a hybrid work model, they will need multiple levels of support from self-service support like FAQs to one-on-one help from champions. The hybrid work transformation site includes a champions program overview page, a Yammer community web part, and pre-populated FAQs to help support employees.
- Mobile-ready: The Workplace transformation site can be easily accessed on mobile devices so employees can continue their hybrid work transition journey from wherever they may be working.
Hybrid work end user training
To help employees develop new hybrid workplace habits and discover new tools that set them up for success, we have developed new end-user training content based on Microsoft research insights. The training content is focused on collaboration and meetings in a hybrid world, using asynchronous collaboration methods, well-being, productivity, security, and data protection. Embed hybrid workplace training content into your Workplace transformation site using Microsoft 365 learning pathways – a free, on-demand training solution. Microsoft 365 learning pathways can be easily deployed in your Microsoft 365 tenant environment and can be used to customize new hybrid work training playlists to suit your organization, along with other Microsoft-maintained product training playlists.
Learn more about the Workplace transformation site template and new end user training. Provision the Workplace transformation site to your tenant today and customize it to help your colleagues transition to a new way of working.
Frequently asked questions:
Question: What are the requirements for installing the Workplace transformation site into my tenant environment?
Ensure SharePoint Online is enabled in your environment.
The individual that will provision the hybrid work transformation site must be the tenant admin.
Question: How long will it take to install the site in our tenant environment?
Answer: Based on our testing of the installation, it should take 10 minutes or less. Individual tenant configurations could cause differences in installation duration. This does not include time to customize the site to your organizations’ requirements.
Question: What customization options are available for the Workplace transformation site?
Answer: The site can be fully customized to fit the needs of your change management project, users, and organization. Review the Workplace transformation site template provisioning and customization guidance before getting started.
Brought to you by Dr. Ware, Microsoft Office 365 Silver Partner, Charleston SC.