Read Time, 3 min.

The next 12 months are a pivotal time for many leaders in determining how to transform the workplace and best meet the needs of employees after such a dramatic change in ways of working.

Microsoft Ireland recently surveyed more than six hundred workers across Ireland and, in addition to Microsoft’s global 2022 Work Trend Index study of 31,000 technology and healthcare workers in thirty-one countries, identified key focus areas for Irish business leaders navigating the unchartered territory of permanent hybrid working.

The insights reveal just how seismic the shift in employee expectations has been globally and our local research confirms Irish workers are no different. Some of the changes in workers’ priorities include an intention to make career changes based on flexible working hours, a desire for a more positive work culture, and strong health and wellbeing policies. It’s clear that there is no appetite to revert to the pre-pandemic ways of working, and nor should there be.

According to the Irish research, about 40% of workers indicated that they were considering changing jobs this year, highlighting a sustained challenge in relation to recruitment and retention for employers. Globally, Gen Z and millennials were more likely to consider a new job in the next year, making it clear the ‘Great Reshuffle’ is far from over.

And based on the findings of both the global and the Irish research, it seems there is no erasing the experience of the last two years either. Our research found that remote or hybrid working has negatively impacted the networks, social circles and relationships between colleagues and teams. Workers reported feelings of loneliness and demotivation, difficulties in building trust among team members and challenges with innovation and idea generation.

The shift to a hybrid workplace, therefore, must begin with culture – one that embraces a growth mind-set and a willingness to re-imagine nearly every aspect of the way work gets done. Poor company culture was cited as the biggest contributing factor as to why people sought new employment in 2021. Conversely, a positive workplace culture was also cited as the most important benefit an employer could provide, proving that people don’t leave jobs, they leave culture.

Workers need must now seize the opportunity to develop organisational policies that are aligned to this new way of working, invest in the solutions that will empower it, and foster a positive culture. In so doing, employers will retain their talent as well as attract new talent. Equally, every employee will need to develop new skills to adapt to this new way of working.

With the right support and tools, hybrid work can unlock the potential for a workplace that works for everyone. At Microsoft, we believe that the transition will benefit from technologies designed for this hybrid world, ones that bridge the digital and physical, while ensuring every employee can engage and contribute, regardless of where, when, or how they’re working.

At an organisational level, through applications such as Microsoft Viva, aggregated data can provide businesses and HR leaders with a deeper understanding of how employees are navigating the hybrid environment. These insights will then support leadership and HR teams in crafting effective strategies that empower managers, establishes boundaries around flexible working hours, and creates equity between the digital and physical experience.

The research also tells us that we need to empower our managers to lead their teams and respond directly to the desire for flexibility in order to contribute to better outcomes for all. When employees thrive, businesses thrive. It’s clear that we need to rethink the role of the office and consider the ‘who, where and why’ of in-person gatherings. For flexible work to be sustainable, there needs to be boundaries to guard against a 24/7 workday.

We now have an opportunity to redesign how we work and create something together that’s better than what it was, and better than it is today. As we navigate the months ahead, we must encourage collaboration, inclusion, and a personal experience that can in turn will foster a culture of digital inclusion and empowerment within the hybrid model, whether working from home, or in the office.

 

 

 

 

Empower employees to be their best with modern employee experiences.

Bring this vision to life through Microsoft Viva.

Discover more related articles per industry:

Education

  • A guide to GDPR for universities

    A guide to GDPR for universities

    With the EU’s new General Data Protection Regulation coming into effect on May 25, understand how universities like yours can take the right steps towards compliance with this free eBook – and other useful resources. Your university on a journey on a journey Your university is on a journey with lots of ‘data subjects’. They’re […]

Government

  • Iceland runs on Trust

    How the cloud helped a small nation realise big ambitions

    In December 2015, the Icelandic government kicked off a digital infrastructure review. With more than 100 different suppliers managed by over 100 IT managers in each public institution, the brief was clear; to simplify operations and streamline IT for over 20,000 users. The solution: Fast forward two and a half years, and a decision was […]

  • three women gathered around a Microsoft Surface

    How Belfast Healthcare & Social Care Trust is Digitally Transforming

    Digitally Connecting Vulnerable Patients to Care Facilities Partnering with Microsoft to help dedicated staff save valuable hours to put into care Belfast Health and Social Care Trust is one of the UK’s largest integrated health and social care providers with over 20,000 employees supporting a population of 340,000 service users. It faced the increasing challenge […]

Healthcare

  • logo

    Why trust is the essential ingredient in healthcare digital transformation.

    My phone had scarcely stopped ringing for weeks. Now it was ringing again. “Veronica,” said the voice at the other end, “we have an idea!” Immediately, I recognized who it was. I’ve known Carlo Tacchetti for almost as long as I’ve been at Microsoft. He’s a professor at the Vita-Salute San Raffaele University and the […]

  • The ‘Big Bang’ approach to digital transformation – and how to make it work

    The ‘Big Bang’ approach to digital transformation – and how to make it work

    These days there’s no such thing as ‘business as usual’. Change and disruption are the new normal. Just think of the changes affecting your organization right now, with new technology and techniques driving new attitudes and expectations from employees and customers alike. Everything is changing. And the one thing all those changes have in common […]

Manufacturing

  • Etex

    Etex uses modern tools to unite its business and better focus on customers

    When it comes to construction, all components must come together in a timely manner in order to produce the optimum product. While Etex, a Belgian building solution manufacturing company, helps make this a reality on a day-to-day basis, it wanted to find a way to enhance productivity and collaboration internally. With locations across more than […]

Retail

Discover more related articles per dossier:

Customer Stories

  • Fitness24Seven

    Fitness24Seven: Flexing new muscle with Intelligent Communications

    Fitness24Seven is one of Europe’s fastest growing fitness brands. But the company found itself needing to connect dispersed teams and improve information sharing. As Stefan Hult, Senior Consultant at Stratiteq explains: “each location was in their own little world. There was really no sort of connection across the entire company.” The solution: Simplicity and flexibility […]

Digital Transformation

  • Banking on technology to empower employees with new ways of working  

    Banking on technology to empower employees with new ways of working  

    AIB extends its relationship with Microsoft to further develop a digitally inclusive and flexible cloud platform that empowers employees with new ways of working  There has been a seismic shift in employee expectations, with flexible working hours, a desire for a more positive work culture, and strong health and wellbeing policies all top of mind […]

Press

  • 2 people meeting with two surfaces on the table

    Winning the war for talent – the power of digital culture

    Winning the war for talent – the power of digital culture For the first time in history, we now have four generations in the Irish workplace – some organisations have as many as five generations working together. For business leaders, it means that finding and cultivating the best talent has never been more important – […]

Security & Privacy

  • Peace of mind when it comes to privacy and security

    Peace of mind when it comes to privacy and security

    “Safely stored in the cloud, compliant and protected by best-in-class security: your data, and the tools you use to harness it, can truly empower your business.” The world is inherently more dangerous than it has ever been, and the cyber threats we face are becoming more sophisticated. Today, any device is a potential route into […]

Tips

  • Top tips for smarter remote working with Microsoft Teams

    Top tips for smarter remote working with Microsoft Teams

    With remote working becoming the new normal for many, people are having to find different ways of effectively functioning as a team. Microsoft Teams is designed to keep colleagues productively connected and ensure that everybody can continue to work as collaboratively, efficiently and securely as in the office. So, whether you already use it or […]