Remote work is no longer just an employee perk but a common expectation among workers. Still, fully remote work is declining, and hybrid work is redefining our perspective on work and the workplace. Empowering people to work remotely on other days is a win-win for companies and staff. But crafting the perfect flexible schedule is an art and science with many nuances. Here's where hybrid work schedule examples come in handy, giving you hints on how to make a timetable that works for modern teams.
At deskbird, we’re right in the middle of this shift, offering solutions that make flexible work not just possible but productive and enjoyable, too. We’ll walk you through seven hybrid work schedule models that are making waves due to their practicality and impact on work-life balance. Implementing flexible work involves more than assigning days for employees to be on-site. So, we’ll also share concrete approaches and flexible schedule examples for a smooth experience of variable working hours.
Whether you’re fine-tuning your current setup or starting from scratch, here are valuable insights to create a more flexible, engaged, and connected workplace.
Definition of a hybrid work schedule
At its core, a hybrid work schedule is all about flexibility. It’s a way of organizing work that allows team members to split their time between working in the office, from home, or in a third workplace. It's not about letting people choose their hours willy-nilly. The idea is to create an integrated plan that gives you the best of both worlds: office collaboration and social interaction with remote convenience.
Why go hybrid? Because one size doesn’t fit all when it comes to how and where we do our best work. Some tasks thrive on team collaboration, while others demand solo focus. A flexible schedule takes these realities into account, aiming to boost productivity, support work-life balance, and keep employees happy and engaged.
7 Hybrid work schedule examples
Flexible schedule example n°1: cohort system
Imagine splitting your team into groups, or “cohorts,” that come into the office on different days or weeks. That’s the cohort system in a nutshell. It’s a neat solution for businesses looking to reduce office density while ensuring that everyone gets some face-to-face time with their colleagues.
Here’s how it can work:
- one group might come in on Mondays and Tuesdays,
- another on Thursdays and Fridays,
- and Wednesdays are for team-wide remote work or meetings via video calls.
This model is especially handy for larger teams where constant collaboration is key, but space is limited. Maintaining team spirit and belonging is crucial, even when not physically together. Plus, it simplifies planning who needs to be where and when, making life easier for everyone involved.
Flexible schedule example n°2: fixed 3:2 or 2:3 model
This model is as straightforward as it sounds, but its strength lies in its simplicity. Employees follow a consistent schedule, working three days in the office and two days remotely or vice versa. The beauty of this approach is its predictability, which facilitates planning workweeks and personal lives for everyone.
Companies can set fixed days for in-office work, like Tuesday to Thursday, with Monday and Friday as remote days. This setup maintains routine and prevents staff overcrowding. It’s a balanced approach, offering a regular mix of in-person collaboration and the peace of remote work, making it a popular choice for both employers and staff.
Taking the fixed model a step further, the at-will version gives people the freedom to choose their in-office and remote days within the framework of a 3:2 or 2:3 schedule. This means that instead of having set days for on-site and at-home work, people can decide week by week which days they come on-site and which they work from home. This model is perfect for teams that need flexibility due to varying personal commitments or project phases that might require more focused solo work or in-person collaboration at different times.
What sets this model apart is its trust in employees to manage their schedules in a way that best supports their productivity and work-life balance. It also allows teams to coordinate their in-office days for meetings or collaborative projects, ensuring that when face-to-face interaction is most beneficial, it can be easily arranged.
Flexible schedule example n°4: staggered schedule
A staggered schedule takes the concept of flexible work hours to a new level by allowing employees to start and end their workdays at different times. This approach is useful for businesses that want to minimize office density throughout the day or have teams spanning multiple time zones. For instance, some people might begin early in the morning and leave by mid-afternoon, while others arrive later and stay until the evening.
This model not only helps in managing office space more efficiently but also supports people who have private obligations, such as dropping kids off at school or attending evening classes. By offering the flexibility to craft their work hours around their personal lives, employees can achieve a better balance, leading to higher job satisfaction and productivity.
The alternating weeks model is a bit like the cohort system but with a twist. Instead of dividing the week, you divide the whole work month into rotating in-office and remote weeks. This means employees spend one week working from the office and the next week working remotely, then repeat. It allows for sufficient time for focused work at home and collaborative meetings in person without making the office feel crowded.
This schedule can be appealing for roles that require deep work phases. It allows for an entire week of undisturbed concentration at home, followed by a week of meetings, brainstorming sessions, and team bonding in the office. It also gives workers something many crave: variety in their work environment, which can keep things fresh and engaging.
Flexible schedule example n°6: rotation mode
With rotation mode, you divide your team into groups and assign them specific weeks or days of the month to work in the office. That way, everyone gets their turn. It’s particularly suitable if you want to downsize your office, meaning you have a limited workspace but are still seeking regular in-person presence. It’s similar to a structured alternating weeks model, with clear cycles of on-site attendance.
What makes rotation mode stand out is its ability to adapt to almost any team size and office capacity. One group for the first week, another for the second, and so on. This helps in keeping the office from becoming too crowded while allowing for planning around office resources and meeting rooms more effectively.
Flexible schedule example n°7: mix-and-match
The mix-and-match model takes workplace flexibility to its peak, allowing people to combine in-office and remote work. This approach recognizes the uniqueness of each person and their individual work preferences and life circumstances. Employees might decide on a week-by-week basis, mixing in-office days with remote work according to their current projects, personal commitments, and collaboration needs.
This system is great for employee empowerment but requires a robust framework to avoid confusion and ensure productivity remains high. Technology plays a crucial role here, especially tools like deskbird, which help manage desk and office space planning. With such resources, employees can easily book their desks on days they choose to come to the office. The model is both flexible and easy to handle for all parties involved.
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Best practices to implement hybrid work schedules successfully
Implementing a hybrid work schedule that meets the needs of your team and your business goals requires thoughtful planning and open communication. Here are some practical methods to assist you in this process.
Understand the motivations and needs of your employees
The first step towards a successful flexible schedule model is to grasp why your team members are interested in hybrid work and what they expect from it. Do they seek improved work-life balance, shorter commutes, or concentrated work hours? Understanding these motivations helps you design a schedule that truly benefits your staff.
It’s also important to recognize that specific roles within your company may adapt to flexible schedules differently. For example, a marketing team member might find it easier to work remotely than a data analyst who requires access to secure servers. Taking the time to consider the unique needs of each employee can make your hybrid schedule more inclusive and effective.
Make collaboration a priority in every decision you make
Ensuring that your team can collaborate effectively, regardless of where they are working from, is crucial. This might mean investing in better communication tools, setting up regular check-ins, or even redesigning your office space to accommodate hybrid meetings better. The goal is to ensure seamless collaboration between remote and in-office coworkers.
Adapting to this hybrid model also means embracing flexibility in schedules and mindset. It is important to create trust in the workplace and understanding among team members. This can be done through open and honest communication and by providing clear expectations and support.
Create a hybrid work policy
Crafting a clear and comprehensive hybrid work policy is crucial for laying down the rules of the road for your team. The policy must clarify the details, including work schedule options and performance metrics. It’s important to draw on a wide range of resources for inspiration and guidance on what to cover in your policy, ensuring it’s both fair and transparent.
This groundwork helps set the right expectations and provides a stable framework for your flexible work model. In this way, everyone knows what to expect and how to succeed.
Workplace analytics are crucial for assessing your agile office layout. Analytics give insights into how you use office space, including occupancy rates so that you can optimize your hybrid team environment. By regularly reviewing this data, you can ensure that your workspace is not only efficient but also aligned with your workforce’s changing needs.
If the data suggests that your current setup falls short, it’s important to consider reconfiguring your office space. Adjustments could range from redesigning meeting areas to accommodating hybrid meetings better. You may also need to rethink common areas to boost collaboration among team members who work and live far from each other.
Equip yourself and your team with the right hybrid work tools and technology
The right tools and technology can make a vast difference in how smoothly your hybrid model runs. From project management apps to communication platforms, ensure your team has what they need to stay connected and productive. Don’t forget about desk booking software like deskbird that makes managing a hybrid workplace efficient and easy. Here are some features your team can enjoy:
The workspace booking system enables employees to reserve the spots they need to complete their in-office tasks.
Switching to a flexible schedule marks a significant shift in how your team operates. Begin with a trial period so that everyone can test the new setup and express their thoughts. This trial is an opportunity to see how well the team adapts, collaborates, and maintains productivity with the newfound flexibility.
Feedback gathered during this time is gold, offering insights that can fine-tune your approach, ensuring it aligns with both team satisfaction and business goals. Embrace this phase as a chance to learn, adapt, and ultimately find the best way forward for your hybrid workplace strategy.
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Constantly reevaluate your hybrid work schedule policy
Work is evolving, and so should your hybrid policy. Make it a priority to review and update your policy regularly based on feedback from your team and changes in your business needs. Engaging with your team to gather their opinions and thoughts, observing shifts in work patterns, and aligning with the growing objectives of your company are all critical steps.
This process of continual reassessment ensures that your hybrid work policy remains aligned with the needs and preferences of your team, as well as the goals of your organization, keeping it both relevant and beneficial in the long term.
Adopting a flexible work schedule that fits your team’s unique needs can significantly boost both productivity and satisfaction. Regardless of the approach you choose, hybrid models require clear communication, an understanding of employees’ expectations, and adaptability. The future of work is about effective collaboration, job satisfaction, and well-being, not location.
Use these hybrid work schedule examples to create a supportive, agile, and productive workplace environment. Looking ahead, consider how incorporating advanced work tools or revisiting your office layout can further enhance the whole experience. Do you want to discover how we can help you do so? Request a free demo of the deskbird app and see how we support you in making the most of any of the flexible schedule examples above (or any other that suits you)!
Paulyne is a hybrid work specialist, who writes about sustainability, flexible work models and employee experience.