Six New Workplace Trends in 2021

Published on April 26, 2021

The employment landscape has changed. As the US workforce emerges from the COVID-19 pandemic, both organizations and individuals learn to work differently. But working differently isn’t a negative thing, and the team at Hardy Properties at Intercontinental knows it takes flexible commercial real estate options to succeed in the evolving workplace.

These six hot workplace trends merge flexibility and innovation that will help each organization adapt and thrive in 2021.

Hybrid Work Model

By now, your teams might have mastered remote work. Thanks to high-speed internet connectivity and improved meeting tools like Zoom and Microsoft Teams, the US workforce was largely able to make this adjustment. We’ve discovered that the internet really can take everything we throw at it!

Although 2020 was a “survival of the fittest” year, and companies did the best they could to evolve and work remotely, productivity wasn’t quite comparable to being at the office. Since remote work is an in-demand fringe benefit of highly-skilled employees, and it helps companies scale with less financial burden, this is the best time to optimize remote operations. Measure team output and find ways to automate processes, provide full transparency and communication, and enhance employee workflows so that a hybrid work model of remote employees and in-house employees can work fluidly together.

This leads nicely into our next workplace trend: better software.

Enhanced Software Tools

We all wish there was a return option on software, especially in bulk. But, since there isn’t, it’s important to know which software is intuitive and optimal for your business so you aren’t regretting the investment and the time spent onboarding your team.

We’re always an advocate for the Microsoft Office Cloud Suite of tools, especially since about 650,000 US companies use it daily. Microsoft is known for listening to their users and adding new tools to help create a more intuitive workforce. Digging a little deeper, project management software is a must. Asana & ClickUp help executives delegate tasks, manage and track projects, and measure milestones, and they’re both very user-friendly. It boils down to personal preference. Communication is definitely one of the most complicated pieces of a hybrid workforce, but with a tool like Zoom, you can video conference easily with teams of all sizes. If automating marketing, sales, and service operations, lead tracking & measuring ROI are next on your priority list, then, HubSpot’s Automation tools will take you to the next level.

But companies need to look beyond software and provide the right workspaces, too.

Flexible Office Space with Configurable Office Furniture

In 2021, expect staff and customers to be far more socially distant. Overcrowded staff meetings are out, while anti-microbial natural sunlight, hand hygiene stations, and gentle reminders for socially distant behavior are in.

If your staff is hybrid in 2021, they’ll appreciate flexible office space with configurable office furniture. The benefit of this system is the ability to set up your office space for social distancing, and then reconfigure as you scale in size.

Your organization will need that flexibility to attract and retain top talent in 2021.

Highly Qualified, Proficient, Cross-skilled Employees

We all spent too much time at home watching Tiger King on Netflix last year. But many remote-work and contract employees had the chance to build their resumes with online coursework and certifications. Alternatively, some people developed new and improved work habits and a new and heightened level of focus.

The American workforce has mastered multi-tasking and working through stressful situations.
And they’re eager to bring these new mental tools and credentials to work.

But employers must realize these individuals know the value of their new knowledge. They expect to be paid accordingly. It’s time to shore up your bottom line and hire the best teams.

Analyzing Budget and Reallocating Unnecessary Spend

2020 was a lamentable year in many ways, but there are some silver linings. For instance, your work from home staff probably incurred zero workers’ comp claims. You might notice business auto insurance, liability insurance, and workers’ comp insurance rates decreasing.

You may also discover that your organization needs more warehouse or office space as the year unfolds. Supply chain struggles and shifting prices highlight the value of space, and you never know when you’ll need extra inventory, or when you’ll have the chance to buy out a competitor. Fortunately, Hardy Properties is here to help your business scale smoothly and comfortably.

Redefining Your Corporate Image & Brand

No matter what industry you’re in, 2021 is a year of redefinition and rebirth. Many organizations are redefining their corporate image, reorganizing their workforce, and rethinking their brand message.

Both consumers and employees are looking for socially responsible, health-aware, diverse organizations to support. Make sure your business is one of them.

Hardy Properties at Intercontinental is the premier industrial office and warehouse business park in North Houston. If you’d like to learn more about flexible office space and hybrid work solutions, let’s talk.