Extensive data across surveys indicate that most people want hybrid work arrangements — that is, a mix of in-person and remote work — as we continue to move through the pandemic. For example, Microsoft’s 2021 Work Trend Index, a study of over 30,000 people in 31 countries, found that 73% of respondents desire remote work options. FlexJobs surveyed more than 2,100 people who worked remotely during the pandemic and found that 58% would leave their jobs if they weren’t able to continue working from home at least some of the time.
As we move into the next phase of the pandemic, companies are grappling with whether and how to bring their employees back into the office after working from home extensively. According to multiple surveys, most people want a mix of in-person and remote work, and some have said they would leave their jobs if not given that option. So, how do you design hybrid work plans successfully? It isn’t just about schedules and office space — leaders need to consider inclusion, performance measurement, trust, cybersecurity, and more. In this edited Q&A, remote work expert Tsedal Neeley answers corporate leaders’ most pressing questions about the shift to hybrid work.