Simplifying workplace access for the hybrid working environment
I would like to share my thoughts on the critical reasons behind this shift in work behaviours and why this is a challenge for many businesses. I will also discuss how a smart access system, featuring the latest digital technology, could provide some answers to flexible working
To break it down here are some key takeaways:
- The global pandemic has meant that maintaining a hybrid working pattern of on-premises and remotely based staff has become the norm
- Growing emphasis on digitally transforming services to optimise productivity and drive data-led growth opportunities are replacing traditional manual operations.
- Both these trends are having an impact on traditional premises access management methods while constantly evolving compliance standards and health guidelines further complicate the picture.
- In this environment, premises managers and HR personnel need control systems that can seamlessly manage and enforce access authorisation for workplaces regardless of where they are yet do not rely on a single individual to operate.
- Smart Access Management upholds compliance while maintaining a centralised, real-time cloud-based record of all employees, visitors, and contractors across multiple locations
What is a hybrid working model?
Hybrid working is a type of flexible working model that focuses on a work life balance where an employee splits their time between the workplace and home via remote working.
Benefits of a hybrid work environment?
There is a vast number of benefits to a hybrid working model. These include:
- Greater flexibility that allows for a better work life balance.
- Fewer distractions that increase employee engagement
- Improved wellbeing as employees can have more time to focus on mental health.
Is hybrid workplace the future of work?
Yes, remote working has become widespread and while some personnel are returning to have more time in the office it appears that the vast majority of firms (up to 83%) expect a hybrid mix of in-office and working from home to continue for some time to come. In this new world of work, providing access to the premises becomes more complicated. In addition to maintaining a warm welcoming environment for visitors at every office, businesses must also retain insight and awareness of access permissions in real-time to keep buildings and staff secure and continuously meet compliance standards.
Critical shifts in workplace behaviour
For the past couple of years many businesses have managed to maintain a semblance of “business-as-usual” by rolling out remote working policies. What started out as a short-term measure to ensure survival has shown many office workers that the office 9-5 routine is not the only way to do your job. According to projections, 25% of all professional jobs in North America will be remote by the end of 2022, and remote opportunities will continue to increase through 2023.
A second shift has been how remote working and a general drive for greater productivity has caused employers to accelerate digital transformation projects, for example supporting home-based workers with collaboration tools for hybrid team building and rolling out mobile and cloud-based applications that enable staff to see and manage customer and supplier relationships using digital channels.
Meanwhile, the regulatory landscape around data privacy is constantly evolving and becoming more complex while guidelines governing health checks such as COVID passes – particularly in high-risk fields like healthcare and education – are also subject to regular change.
As we move further into this new always-on, digitally connected world of work, financial institutions, public service organisations and other regulated industries need to be able to demonstrate their ability to provide intelligent managed access to buildings in an integrated, seamless way
Planning for a hybrid working arrangement.
Does Your Hybrid Workplace Support Your Workers?
As premises/facilities managers and HR personnel you will need access control systems that are digitally connected while at the same time providing greater real-time insight into visitors to manage access, check credentials and protect site safety.
The aim should be to provide genuine visitors with a warm and helpful experience and track the movements of contractors, maintaining your company culture while all the time preventing access to any unauthorised individuals. It’s a delicate balance – one that can be tricky to pull off
Solutions for the Hybrid Workplace
How can SAM improve your hybrid workplace?
Pitney Bowes Smart Access Management™ effortlessly solves this dilemma by letting managers digitally control, check and administer entry authorisation for hybrid workers as well as visiting guests and third-party contractors via an easy-to-use system portal. Smart Access Management is flexible enough to handle the functional and compliance access requirements of medium to large businesses at a single, multiple, and even unmanned locations, providing smooth, welcoming visitor support for everyone. On arrival pre-registered visitors simply check in via a large screen kiosk using a contactless QR code. All data is stored securely in the cloud.