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Hybrid Work Risk Management


Hybrid work binds the company and workers together and looks after the needs of both parties.

But exactly how challenging will it be to adopt it seamlessly and make it work? And what are the relevant questions that will answer areas of tool proliferation, advancement, tracking and flexibility?

There are, of course, general fixes to a lot of these problems. However more detailed, comprehensive questions still await real world solutions.

The Costs Of Wrong Answers Are Heavy

Wrong Questions?

Right Questions?

Right Questions But Wrong Answers?

The Right Questions and The Right Answers – this is what leads to real on-the-ground solutions that are specific rather than just generalized quotes of global advise.

Hybrid work brings boundaries. And certain restrictions as well.

Everyone’s definition of flexibility is also (reasonably) different.

It’s unlikely for two people to have the same opinion and preference about the ‘days of the week’ they should be called to the office.

But again, mandating random ‘days of the week’ is arbitrary and unfortunately, rarely helps. It, in fact, worsens the situation and invites chaos.

Does that mean we’ve been trying to oversimplify hybrid work dangerously and put it in the box of ‘attend office two days of the week, work from home the others?’

But do companies and employers have the expertise to make and socialize the ‘right’ day choices instead?

This is something they’ve never done.

How do they learn then? Is there room for trial and error? Will that lead to dips in performance? And really, what is the ‘right choice?’ ‘Right’ for whom?

Does this ‘right’ have the ability to cater to everyone? If yes, how?

Is it possible to make the right choices without in-depth operating knowledge of cross-linkages, daily urgencies/priorities, process risks, teams and dependencies?

Getting The Right Answers Are Hard

As discussed earlier, everyone has their own definition of flexibility that is affected by a range of factors like their lifestyles, family needs, and schedules.

But is it actually feasible to let everyone abide by their personal idea of flexibility and operate on their assumptions? What are the implications of the same?

Does or must flexibility refer to time? Or space? Should it mean complete flexibility or one that is bound by certain limits? If so, who defines these boundaries?

Should it be a top management decision or one that is arrived at with employee inputs in place?

And who tracks these limits? What strategy should be adopted here? Should it just be a gut feeling? And whose gut, really?

Hybrid work delays communication and collaboration. There is a significant lag.

Then, do performance practices align with these gaps in distributed work practices? And what if the scales turn and times are bad? Is there a well-thought strategy to accommodate that chaos?

What if customer demand and work pressure increase? Should you follow a calibrated approach?

If yes, what calibration should be applied? And to which parameters?

How do you minimise cost and maintain resource availability when needed?

All these aspects are paramount to adopting the hybrid work model.

But how do you establish them as norms and formulate policies for the same?

Frictions will undoubtedly arise. How do you handle them? What exceptions do you make?

Most importantly, how do you bring your company and its people on the same page?

Risk Management

Risk management is the process of identifying, assessing and controlling financial, legal, strategic and security risks to an organization’s capital and earnings.

Each of these aspects have criteria, causes, solutions and priorities.

Identifying and addressing them in a cohesive fashion requires multi-pronged expertise that may or may not exist internally. However, even with the help of the best of transition management experts for hybrid work, a continuing control structure to track, manage, allocate and coordinate the risks between internal and external stakeholders is essential.

Imagine credit risk management or liquidity risk management without technology tools in the modern age. Hybrid work risk management needs a tool too. Work.IS is that tool.