Hybrid Work Maturity Study: Executive Summary

How ready is your organization for hybrid work?

According to IDC’s Hybrid Work Maturity Study conducted with Cisco, 45% of business and technology leaders say remote and hybrid work models will be an embedded part of accepted work practices moving forward and 93% are planning to maintain or increase spending in this area for 2022.

Workplace transformation has evolved from simply supporting remote employees on a limited or ad hoc basis to enabling hybrid work as a strategic, embedded work model. To help organizations better understand their hybrid work readiness and maturity, and to create strategies for advancing their maturity, Cisco partnered with IDC to conduct global research across 20 industries in various sized organizations. Stakeholders from IT, Operations, Facilities, and HR can use this study as a way to facilitate conversations across their functional areas to develop hybrid work policies that are holistic across the entire organization.

Hybrid Work Maturity Stages

The Hybrid Work Maturity Model includes four stages that span a continuum of increasing maturity. The key characteristics of the stages, along with the distribution of where respondents fell across the four stages are:

  • Hybrid Work Observer (6.5%): Beginning to explore different hybrid work models but are predominantly working within the office during regular business hours.
  • Hybrid Work Adopter (47.2%): Experimenting with hybrid work models and beginning to invest in technology to enable them.
  • Hybrid Work Champion (37.8%): Seeing success and improved business outcomes with hybrid work models in silos but have not yet deployed them company wide.
  • Hybrid Work Innovator (8.6%): Well-established, company-wide hybrid work policy that is complemented with the right technology to support a hybrid-first approach.

As organizations move into the future of work, knowing if they are advanced or lagging in hybrid work maturity serves as a useful baseline for future planning. By exploring hybrid work adoption, organizations can access their level of maturity and identify opportunities for improvement in the short, medium, and long term. For example, those in the earlier stages of maturity might want to accelerate the deployment of digital tools, such as cloud security and a collaboration platform. Tools like these foster more innovation and creativity in the long run, ultimately leading to a more sustainable, resilient, and engaged workforce.

Bridging the four dimensions of hybrid work

In the survey, respondents were asked to rate their organization’s focus across four maturity dimensions:  policy, people and work culture, technology, and facilities. Technology was the #1 area of focus (51% of respondents), followed by people and work culture (33%), policy (12%), and facilities (4%). But rethinking the workplace experience to achieve better and lasting business outcomes isn’t accomplished simply by taking action in a single dimension, such as investing in new technology. While technology investments in hybrid work are critical to its success, they must be matched with investments in work transformation policy, culture, and facilities. Cultural transformation is an equally important component of whether organizations will evolve or remain challenged in deploying hybrid work initiatives. Rather than disassociate the technical focus from policies, culture and facilities, organizations need to integrate efforts and planning across all four dimensions.

There is no single hybrid work model that will fit every organization or employee, since certain roles may require in-person collaboration, whereas other roles may thrive with simple and secure remote connectivity. With a firm understanding of where you are in the hybrid work maturity journey, you can develop and invest in a hybrid work model across all dimensions that will help your organization prosper in this fast-evolving age of work.

What is driving work transformation?

When strategically planned, work transformation that leverages a hybrid work model has the potential to create numerous positive outcomes. IDC found that the number one driver of work transformation is increased productivity (48%). Other drivers are business agility (39%), improved partner and customer engagement (39%) and improved employee engagement (36%). The benefits don’t stop there. For example, Hybrid Work Innovators report that work transformation helps them to not only be more productive and agile, but to also attract and retain top talent, and improve regulatory compliance.

Next Steps

Understanding how organizations can fully benefit from the growing and fast-evolving era of hybrid work requires a holistic approach. One that includes all of the key stakeholders across IT, Operations and Facilities, and People (HR) and that spans collaboration, security, networking, cloud, and applications.

To find out more about how Cisco is helping organizations to make hybrid work, work, learn more about solutions:

  • For your workforce, to help attract and retain talent, unleash productivity, and reimagine employee workspaces.
  • For your office and facilities, to reimagine offices and transform workspaces.
  • With technology, spanning networking, security, collaboration, cloud, and applications.

To read the full IDC InfoBrief, “How Ready is YOUR Organization for Hybrid Work?”, click here.



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