Preparing for a Recession: How Hybrid Work Can Help You Cut Costs and Save Jobs
Let’s cut right to the chase.
Experts are predicting another recession is lurking in the near future. 75% of fortune 500 CEOs say they expect the next recession to begin by the end of 2023. After the last two years, recession isn’t something any of us want to talk about but it’s important to plan ahead, so you can cut costs now and save jobs later.
What seems different this time around is that although there’s a potential recession on the horizon, we’re still living in an employee driven market. Job vacancies decreased from 11.9 million to 11.4 million in April, but data still shows there are 1.9 jobs for every unemployed person.
That’s almost 2 jobs for every unemployed person. Clearly, people are still a company’s greatest asset.
We’re already seeing big players like Meta, Twitter, and Uber pull back on hiring and even consider layoffs, but that’s not the only option. In fact, we think letting people go should be the very last thing on your list.
Prioritizing People Over Places
A recession means it’s time to start being cost-efficient, but that doesn’t mean you should turn straight to cutting jobs. In fact, focusing on employee experience can help you grow your company.
Your teams are the foundation of your company. If they aren’t happy with company culture or workplace experience, work won’t get done. According to a survey from Willis Towers Watson, most respondents believe a positive employee experience is a key driver of productivity (79%).
Not only do happy employees yield better results, they can lead to more profits. Happier employees exhibit greater financial performance and customer satisfaction. And Kansas State University found that happier employees are superior decision makers and demonstrate better interpersonal behaviors.
With a potential recession approaching, keeping your employees engaged and productive just makes good business sense. It’s your job to make sure the business runs the best it can and the number one driver of that isn’t tech integrations or big offices - it’s your people. So before you start downsizing, consider other ways to cut costs first. Don’t lose your greatest asset if you don’t have to.
Hybrid How-To: Save Money in Your Workplace
Hybrid work creates a new opportunity for businesses heading into the recession: cutting down office footprints. Now that hybrid work is the norm, there is a whole area of untapped cost savings that can be solved for with the right tools.
Would you rather cut your office space in half or your workforce? We hope that answer is a no-brainer. Here’s how you can save by going hybrid.
- Get rid of the 1:1 desk to employee ratio
Before the pandemic, a new hire meant a new desk, a new set up, and more supplies in the office. With a hybrid work model not everyone’s in the office at the same, which means you don’t need a desk for every employee. Cut back on supplies and furniture costs by only preparing the office layout for a minimum number of people. When you start by assuming everyone will work remotely, you gain an opportunity to save.
- Reconsider your office location and size
If you have less desks, you need less space. Simple as that. If you have the ability to change offices you can downsize or move to a cheaper location to lower your rent. In New York, companies are moving out of the city and closer to Brooklyn where their employees live and the rent is half as much.
We know that may not be the option for everyone, so if you’re trapped in a lease or don’t have the ability to move consider subletting part of your space. Rethinking your office can save you loads in real estate costs.
- Adapt your office to suit more types of work
Adopting a flexible work style doesn’t have to involve moving or expanding into a new office. There are a ton of cost-effective measures that can be taken to rework, reimagine, and refresh an existing office to meet the needs of a flexible workforce. A great way to adapt a current office to one that supports flexible work styles is through trial and error.
- Listen and learn
The people who work at your company probably have a clear picture of what tools and resources are being used and which ones are gathering dust. Send out employee feedback surveys, analyze workplace analytics and find out what is being put to good use and what isn’t.
Maybe there are snacks, drinks, and supplies you’re purchasing that aren’t being used. Or maybe there’s a desk clump or conference room that isn’t being utilized and can be cut from your floor plan. What technology is crucial to productivity? Do you work with software that does similar things? Is there a program that isn’t getting much use?
Remember, your people are your greatest asset. Ask questions, listen to their answers, and make changes to benefit the budget and their workplace experience.
Before you jump to layoffs and cutting hours, think of how you can shift your workplace to meet your needs. Hybrid work is about flexibility, not just for your teams, but for your company as well. Make your hybrid strategy work for you.
Want to see what your hybrid space should look like? Check out our hybrid calculator.