You’re looking for a job, and now, you’ve got more choice than ever when it comes to how and where you work.
Unlike in years gone by, companies are offering fully remote, hybrid and in-office opportunities, which means there’s a lot more for you to consider than before.
Your work setup can have a critical impact on your performance, so it’s a decision that shouldn’t be taken lightly. There are advantages and disadvantages to each option and no one size fits all solution anymore. There’s a lot to think about!
Here are the 4 factors you should consider before committing to a remote, in-office, or hybrid arrangement.
Your personality traits and preferences
Ask yourself how you like to work best. Think about your experiences during lockdown if you went from one extreme of being in the office every day to working from home away from others.
Did you find that you have less energy, motivation or focus at home when working behind a computer screen alone compared to when you’re surrounded by colleagues? Did you miss the conversations with your team, or are these interactions not that important to you?
Really understanding yourself, what’s important to you and what your preferences are should influence the type of setup you’d be happy working in.
Opportunities for progression
Although performance and ability should be the main reasons, the day-to-day visibility of staff can be a factor when it comes to making decisions on promotions. Companies may inadvertently favour their in-office employees over hybrid and remote workers.
If you’re considering remote or hybrid work, make sure to find out how performance is evaluated and recognised at the company and ask them about their progression/development plans.
Is progression based on tangible and clear results? What support does your manager provide to make sure your efforts are recognised and valued as much as those in the office full-time?
It’s important to not solely base the decision on where/how your work on your career advancement prospects. In the long term, the most fulfilling arrangements will take into account your personal priorities, like lifestyle, work-life balance and mental health, as well as your career goals.
These priorities and career goals will no doubt change throughout your life, so what works best for you right now might not be what will work best for you in 5 years’ time. Therefore, you should consider how flexible a company’s policies are and whether there’s the option to change depending on what’s important to you.
Communication and culture
If you love in-person meetings and causal desk chats, then an office environment is probably the best set-up for you.
However, if you prefer to focus on your work without distraction and spend more time thinking about your responses, a remote working environment may be the best for you. If it’s a mix of the two, with some days spent collaborating with the team and others at home working on projects, hybrid’s the one to go for.
You also need to consider how important the culture is to you and what the company does to ensure those working outside of the office feel connected and part of the team. Are you someone that thrives on being part of the in-office culture or are you more of a go with the flow type of character?
On the whole, it doesn’t look likely that the majority of companies will revert back to being fully office-based. Remote and hybrid working, and the flexibility around how people choose to work, looks set to stay – particularly in tech and digital-focused industries.
Ultimately, there’s no right or wrong answer when it comes to your ideal working environment and only you can determine what your priorities are and what works best for you. Just be mindful of what’s important to you and what your drivers are when it comes to your job search and where/how you’re going to be working.