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Why accounting practices need to go hybrid

Dec 10, 2021 | Tips

If 2020 was the year of remote work, 2021 has been all about hybrid. You’d be hard pressed to find a sector that isn’t at least investigating – with many already embracing – hybrid work practices. The pandemic gave business owners an opportunity to see whether working from home was actually sustainable, and with the general response a resounding ‘yes’, now is the time to adapt your workplace for the digital hybrid age.

For accounting practices in particular, adopting a hybrid workplace can bring numerous benefits. Here’s why so many firms are following this path.

Business owners have already made up their minds

For several years now, businesses have been shifting away from the traditional nine-to-five work style. The benefit of technologies like the cloud is that it allows employees in various industries to work from home and on the road without disruption. As long as they can connect to the internet, they can get their jobs done.

But that slow transition has been accelerated thanks to the pandemic, and now some 82% of company leaders plan to allow employees to continue working from home at least part-time, even after offices reopen, according to Gartner.

For jobs that aren’t exclusively client-facing, hybrid work is likely to become the rule rather than the exception. So what does that mean for accounting practices?

What you can expect from your hybrid teams

If your firm hasn’t yet embraced a hybrid work style, what are you likely to expect? Will your teams suddenly become less productive because they aren’t physically visible in the office? What will happen to collaboration when co-workers can’t interact face-to-face? These concerns are valid, but evidence from the past two years shows that hybrid can be an extremely valuable asset.

According to research from WeWork, staff who enjoy a hybrid work style are showing:

  • Increased productivity.
  • Greater satisfaction and appreciation for work culture.
  • More opportunities for additional learning/upskilling.
  • Better collaboration with co-workers.
  • Improved mental health and overall wellbeing.

In short, those who have the option to work from home some of the time simply work better in their own environment.

Hybrid is an attractive prospect for top talent

Research shows that even if they don’t end up taking advantage of working from home, people want the freedom to choose. According to a McKinsey study, almost two in three workers (63%) want the option to work remotely – which is a 25% bump since the beginning of the pandemic. Further, more than half of them would prefer to work remotely at least three days of the week.

The proof is in the numbers: if the vast majority of people want their workplace to be hybrid, they will seek out employers who give them what they want. That means by adopting hybrid work policies, you can use it as a selling point to attract top talent from around the country – or even globally – and provide your existing staff with another great reason to stay with your practice.

 

Find out more about turning your traditional workplace into a digital powerhouse with the APS Accountants’ Workspace.

The future practice starts right here – book a consultation with us today.

APS is a division of Reckon, an ASX listed company. We develop the software used by the best Accounting Firms in Australia and New Zealand to run their business’ and advise their clients.