December 21, 2021 by Andrea Rajic
The tectonic shifts of the past few years affect virtually every organization, bringing new opportunities, unique challenges, and propelling some departments to their long-deserved spotlights. Nowhere is this more obvious than with HR and People Operations functions, who are now getting the increased attention they should have gotten long ago.
With hybrid and remote work disrupting how we used to work physically, there is a special emphasis now on Workplace Management departments, as they are critical in this organizational shift. We wanted to shine a light on what workplace management used to mean, what falls under its scope in a hybrid work environment, and how you can streamline workplace operations in your company and make it work for your employees.
Workplace management is essentially the design, planning, oversight, and management of physical work environments. In traditional, office-based settings, workplace management falls under the facilities management umbrella, although it has its own processes.
However, in a world leaning more towards remote and hybrid work, everything changes - and so does workplace management. Where before workplace managers thought primarily about furniture layouts, seat arrangements, equipment, and managing real estate movings, now it’s more about designing employee experience and providing a level playing field for employees in every location.
Like workforce management systems, workplace management is undergoing a transformation in the hybrid workplace. It is slowly emerging as one of the vital verticals in every HR and People Operations department.
As we mentioned earlier, the scope of workplace management is shifting significantly due to the rise of the remote and hybrid work models. For example, companies are now introducing capacity and occupancy planning for their physical workspaces due to the limitations of people in indoor spaces.
On the other hand, workplace services are expanding to include flexible workspaces, not just the company’s flagship locations, HQs, and offices. As organizations move towards location-agnostic hiring, their need for a co-located office decreases, and workplace services get a bit of a facelift.
In the hybrid workplace, the primary goal of workplace management is to serve and support employee experience and engagement as one of the pillars of keeping a distributed workforce happy. The workplace itself is no longer singular, geographically constrained, and reduced to managing the layout of a piece of real estate. Instead, it’s now all about showcasing company culture, designing great experiences for employees, and ensuring they are engaged, motivated, and productive - wherever they work from.
Another factor to consider with workplace management in a hybrid organization: it now also serves to ensure every employee has the same opportunities when it comes to workspace options. Companies can now provide the same conditions and experience to employees across geographies, making it easier to seamlessly bring remote hiring and workplace experience together.
Thanks to hybrid work, workplace management now entails providing flex workspaces to employees in every location. Assessing the needs of employees, their location, and providing a workspace they can use for meetings of focused work - all this falls under the scope of the hybrid workplace manager. It starts with determining the type of workspaces employees and departments need and goes on with assigning usage limits, privilege levels, and workspace budgets.
The new workplace management scope brings new opportunities, and of course, an all-new set of challenges for HR, People Ops, and Workplace professionals. Companies of all sizes benefit from well-designed workplace operations, but growing companies face particular challenges.
When your headcount is skyrocketing and you’re recruiting on a large scale, it’s certain you won’t have time to manually find workspaces for every new employee or cluster of employees. It would take a lot of manual work, adding to your workload and an already complex workflow. The same goes for managing and analyzing the workplace and its usage, which adds new operational tasks for Workplace and People Ops teams. The main challenge here is having a single workplace management system that enables you to provide, analyze, and manage workspaces in multiple locations.
Finally, there is the integration aspect. If your company is using an HR software or solution, it’s challenging to find a workplace app that does all of the above and integrates with your existing HR stack. The main benefit of integrating with your stack is to ensure the optimal HR operations workflow and provide visibility to all people operations workflows and how they work with the company’s wider goals.
Okay, but how do you find a workplace management system that integrates with your HR stack, provides all the above-listed benefits and helps you streamline workplace operations? Well, at Gable!
Gable For Companies lets Workplace and People Ops teams get access to local workspaces, hassle-free management, and real-time employee insights - all in a single platform. Here’s what you can do with Gable:
Want to know more about Gable?