work from home set up

How to keep your hybrid working team engaged 

The way businesses operate has changed significantly since the first national lockdown in March 2020. But arguably one of the biggest changes has been the way businesses use technology. Data from McKinsey shows that businesses accelerated their digitisation by three to four years in the first four months of the pandemic.

This adoption of new technology has not come without its teething problems, however, and this is especially true for businesses with large office contingents. These workers promptly switched to remote working in March 2020 and had to adapt to these technologies while working from home. Google data shows that searches for terms on how to use tools like Zoom rose exponentially during the first few months of the pandemic, with “how to use Zoom” increasing by 7,016.74%.

Now that workers have had time to familiarise themselves with the tools, they’ve been embedded into workplaces. Employers and employees will still be taking advantage of tools including Teams and Zoom until the work from home directive is lifted, and may potentially keep them in the long term. Many businesses are looking to shift to a formal hybrid working model, so employers need to know how they can bring their home-workers and their office-based staff together using these tools.

Check out some of our top tips on keeping your employees connected using the technology you’ve embedded into your workplace during the pandemic.

Hold regular business catch-ups 

Many businesses adopted collaboration technologies for the first time in the March 2020 lockdown – Zoom data shows that its daily meeting participants increased from 10 million to 300 million between December 2020 and April 2021. While searches on how to use them have died down since hitting a peak of 335,910 monthly searches in the March 2020 lockdown, queries remain 3,482% higher than 2019, which shows we’re still using – and maybe even getting to grips with – these tools.

As we begin to emerge from lockdown, you can still use these tools to your advantage. Because, if there’s one thing the pandemic has proven, it’s that we don’t need to be in the same room to be together at work. Despite that, almost half of people who worked from home during the pandemic felt isolated and lonely. So, with less restrictive work from home instructions still in place, how can you ensure those people feel included in the workplace?

Hosting regular workplace catch-ups and dialling your home-based colleagues in on Teams and Zoom is a great way you can do this. What’s more, if you have a large space in the office and TV or digital screens on the walls, you can cast Zoom and Teams to these screens so it really feels like you’re all together.

Host remote after-work activities 

While many hospitality venues have opened, capacity and group sizes are limited. You may also have employees who are uncomfortable socially mixing at this stage in the pandemic. So, with the Euros hitting our screens this month, why not host work watch parties that your office and home-based employees can take part in together?

“Watch parties” are becoming more commonplace, with a number of streaming services recently launching a Teleparty function. This allows people to watch their favourite show together and includes a group chat so they can discuss it in real time.

It’s easy to recreate this for your colleagues. You can utilise your office screens and TV distribution technology to stream the matches – or any show, for that matter – in your office and create a Teams group for your people to discuss the events as they unfold.

Set up social groups 

The great thing about tools like Teams and Zoom is that they can be used for both business and social purposes. If you’re already using Teams to allow your employees to collaborate remotely, why not set up some social channels to allow them to connect throughout the day too?

Whether you set up a company-wide chat for your employees to get to know each other, wherever they’re based, or you encourage your people to set up chats within their own teams, letting them know that they’re able to connect and engage with others is a sure-fire way to make them feel involved.

The coronavirus pandemic and resulting lockdowns have forced many of us to work with technology in a way that we hadn’t previously. It also introduced home working to many employees for the first time, which made the adoption of this technology more challenging. Many businesses are currently operating with a hybrid office and home-based workforce, and this trend is set to stay in the long term. That means keeping your employees engaged could become more difficult – but our tips will make this much easier!

You may also be interested in these articles:

Sponsored Video

Register, Login or Login with your Social Media account:


Advertisers

Upcoming FE Events

Advertiser Skyscrapers

Newsroom Activity

FE News: The Future of Education News Channel shared a video in channel. 9 hours 46 minutes ago

#VirtualCoffee with David Gallagher and Gavin |...

#VirtualCoffee with David Gallagher and Gavin | 3rd Aug

Latest Education News

Further Education News

The FE News Channel gives you the latest education news and updates on emerging education strategies and the #FutureofEducation and the #FutureofWork.

Providing trustworthy and positive Further Education news and views since 2003, we are a digital news channel with a mixture of written word articles, podcasts and videos. Our specialisation is providing you with a mixture of the latest education news, our stance is always positive, sector building and sharing different perspectives and views from thought leaders, to provide you with a think tank of new ideas and solutions to bring the education sector together and come up with new innovative solutions and ideas.

FE News publish exclusive peer to peer thought leadership articles from our feature writers, as well as user generated content across our network of over 3000 Newsrooms, offering multiple sources of the latest education news across the Education and Employability sectors.

FE News also broadcast live events, podcasts with leading experts and thought leaders, webinars, video interviews and Further Education news bulletins so you receive the latest developments in Skills News and across the Apprenticeship, Further Education and Employability sectors.

Every week FE News has over 200 articles and new pieces of content per week. We are a news channel providing the latest Further Education News, giving insight from multiple sources on the latest education policy developments, latest strategies, through to our thought leaders who provide blue sky thinking strategy, best practice and innovation to help look into the future developments for education and the future of work.

In Jan 2021, FE News had over 173,000 unique visitors according to Google Analytics and over 200 new pieces of news content every week, from thought leadership articles, to the latest education news via written word, podcasts, video to press releases from across the sector, putting us in the top 2,000 websites in the UK.

We thought it would be helpful to explain how we tier our latest education news content and how you can get involved and understand how you can read the latest daily Further Education news and how we structure our FE Week of content:

Main Features

Our main features are exclusive and are thought leadership articles and blue sky thinking with experts writing peer to peer news articles about the future of education and the future of work. The focus is solution led thought leadership, sharing best practice, innovation and emerging strategy. These are often articles about the future of education and the future of work, they often then create future education news articles. We limit our main features to a maximum of 20 per week, as they are often about new concepts and new thought processes. Our main features are also exclusive articles responding to the latest education news, maybe an insight from an expert into a policy announcement or response to an education think tank report or a white paper.

FE Voices

FE Voices was originally set up as a section on FE News to give a voice back to the sector. As we now have over 3,000 newsrooms and contributors, FE Voices are usually thought leadership articles, they don’t necessarily have to be exclusive, but usually are, they are slightly shorter than Main Features. FE Voices can include more mixed media with the Further Education News articles, such as embedded podcasts and videos. Our sector response articles asking for different comments and opinions to education policy announcements or responding to a report of white paper are usually held in the FE Voices section. If we have a live podcast in an evening or a radio show such as SkillsWorldLive radio show, the next morning we place the FE podcast recording in the FE Voices section.

Sector News

In sector news we have a blend of content from Press Releases, education resources, reports, education research, white papers from a range of contributors. We have a lot of positive education news articles from colleges, awarding organisations and Apprenticeship Training Providers, press releases from DfE to Think Tanks giving the overview of a report, through to helpful resources to help you with delivering education strategies to your learners and students.

Podcasts

We have a range of education podcasts on FE News, from hour long full production FE podcasts such as SkillsWorldLive in conjunction with the Federation of Awarding Bodies, to weekly podcasts from experts and thought leaders, providing advice and guidance to leaders. FE News also record podcasts at conferences and events, giving you one on one podcasts with education and skills experts on the latest strategies and developments.

We have over 150 education podcasts on FE News, ranging from EdTech podcasts with experts discussing Education 4.0 and how technology is complimenting and transforming education, to podcasts with experts discussing education research, the future of work, how to develop skills systems for jobs of the future to interviews with the Apprenticeship and Skills Minister.

We record our own exclusive FE News podcasts, work in conjunction with sector partners such as FAB to create weekly podcasts and daily education podcasts, through to working with sector leaders creating exclusive education news podcasts.

Education Video Interviews

FE News have over 700 FE Video interviews and have been recording education video interviews with experts for over 12 years. These are usually vox pop video interviews with experts across education and work, discussing blue sky thinking ideas and views about the future of education and work.

Events

FE News has a free events calendar to check out the latest conferences, webinars and events to keep up to date with the latest education news and strategies.

FE Newsrooms

The FE Newsroom is home to your content if you are a FE News contributor. It also help the audience develop relationship with either you as an individual or your organisation as they can click through and ‘box set’ consume all of your previous thought leadership articles, latest education news press releases, videos and education podcasts.

Do you want to contribute, share your ideas or vision or share a press release?

If you want to write a thought leadership article, share your ideas and vision for the future of education or the future of work, write a press release sharing the latest education news or contribute to a podcast, first of all you need to set up a FE Newsroom login (which is free): once the team have approved your newsroom (all content, newsrooms are all approved by a member of the FE News team- no robots are used in this process!), you can then start adding content (again all articles, videos and podcasts are all approved by the FE News editorial team before they go live on FE News). As all newsrooms and content are approved by the FE News team, there will be a slight delay on the team being able to review and approve content.

 RSS IconRSS Feed Selection Page