4 min read

Consider productivity measures in deciding your workplace strategy

Gaz Willott

Customer Success Business Partner

How can workforce planning leaders use productivity data to decide whether in-office, hybrid, or at-home work is best suited for their business?

Having a choice of where to work from is a hot topic, thanks to changing workplace standards around the globe. Once considered a perk, working from home or remotely is now a non-negotiable for some employees, leaving organizational leadership to decide what their ideal workplace strategy should be. In-office, work from home (WFH), and hybrid options have pros and cons to the individual and the business, but let’s consider what is the workplace impact on productivity in particular. 

What factors matter? 

Determining which policies will work best at your business is no easy feat and there is no one-size-fits all solution that can be applied across the entire business, so you should consider several factors. 

Employee preference 

Satisfaction is crucial in winning and retaining the best talent and many have come to appreciate the flexibility of WFH and hybrid approaches. Finding out what work environment best suits employees and their role is key to determining the best options for the business, as it’s likely to significantly impact organizational culture. In fact, 64% of American workers report that they’d considering quitting a job if they were asked to resume full-time in-office work. 

Preferences alone cannot be the only deciding factor when choosing your approach to allow remote/WFH, hybrid, or full in-office standards. 

Key productivity measures   

It is essential to use data to measure, understand and determine the right environment for your employees. There need to be key performance indicators demonstrating an environment more conducive to productivity. 

For instance, in a webinar we explored a large organization with a call/contact center operations that wanted to understand the productivity impacts of various work settings for their staff. They identified important factors impacting their business: 

  • Were there disparities in productive time when individuals worked at home versus in the office? Hold time was an important indicator of productivity. Were customers more likely to wait, on hold, while a person working from home looked up the answer rather than in-office, where it was easier to connect with the colleague with the answer? Additionally, attributing their time spent on specific tasks created a clear window into how much of their time was productive versus not.  
  • Were people more likely to take time off on in-office days? If people actively tried to find ways around coming into the office, it was a big hint that those individuals weren’t interested in even a hybrid approach and thus, the day’s productivity trended downward. 
  • Was there a decrease in sick time? Uncover whether people are more likely to log in for a portion of the day when they’re at home sick. Sometimes employees began to feel better as the day progressed, and instead of losing a whole day of productivity, those individuals decided to log in. Thus, productivity wasn’t affected for an entire day, unlike when an individual stayed home from the office entirely. 

Use productivity data to improve decisions 

Connecting the dots can provide a clearer picture of productivity levels in various circumstances. Anaplan’s ability to connect granular data, right down to individuals’ productivity, enables you to create a full picture of the efficacy of a site, an entire department, or even an entire organization. 

This complete visibility and transparency allows different stakeholders to analyze, assess, and balance which decisions are most beneficial to the company and to the individuals. If productivity wanes when individuals are in-office, is an office space necessary? Operations team then can consider right-sizing real estate needs for a smaller group of hybrid or onsite employees. Is a decline in productivity a symptom of an ailing culture? HR can work to improve or even completely transform the culture to better prioritize out-of-office employees to better connect them with those in-office. 

Granular productivity data can also help you identify under- or over-utilized resources. Workforce planning leaders can then make plans to balance resources and work more effectively across the business. 

At the very core, analyzing productivity and engagement data will better illuminate what environment will positively affect your margin and employee satisfaction. Finance can provide color commentary on the monetary or budgetary impacts of these productivity changes across work environments.  

Conclusion 

Tracking various productivity indicators provides a world of data for various department to use in order to improve their operations. Now that the flexibility of work-from-home is desired by a larger portion of the workforce, organizations need all the data points and measurable ROI on each structure. Using Anaplan, data can be compiled and shared with complete transparency for all key stakeholders and decision-makers, so they can make the right choices for their teams and departments, both on individual and organizational finance levels. 

Watch the full webinar to get more in-depth into evaluating work settings.

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