85% UAE companies saw increase in productivity after shift to hybrid work amid Covid

69 per cent of UAE employers believe they will lose new and existing employees if they don’t adapt

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Nandini Sircar

Published: Sat 26 Mar 2022, 8:36 AM

Last updated: Sat 26 Mar 2022, 10:42 PM

Majority of UAE employers believe that they will lose new and existing employees if they don’t figure out hybrid work options.

That’s according to Poly Research’s latest report examining how organizations are responding to employees’ demand for ideal workspaces.

Shifting to hybrid work helped 85 per cent of surveyed companies increase productivity.

The new Poly study, Recruit, Retain and Grow, analyses work policies, culture, and wellness through the lens of over 2,500 global business decision-makers.

Post-pandemic attitudes and expectations highlighted in the research show that workers are visiting the office three days per week, with Wednesday being the most popular day.

Deepa Sud, CEO, Plum Jobs – Dubai based HR advisory, executive search and business transformation consultancy says, “as hybrid working is becoming more permanent for many organizations, they are having to adapt their style of management in leading teams, managing performance and productivity, and developing people. Companies are investing in technology to allow their employees to stay productive and deliver the outputs required.”

“We are seeing a shift in salaries for many hybrid roles – organizations are beginning to slow down salary increments for employees who are working from home as their commuting costs lower,” added Sud.

According to the survey, 23 per cent UAE-based organisations require their employees to work from the office at least three days a week.

“At Poly, we believe that being able to enable a hybrid working environment is not the endgame, but a starting point for the competitive organizations today. Our latest research validates Poly's point of view,” says John Goodwin, Senior Vice President of Public Affairs at Poly. “We found that employees are supportive of companies that take a holistic approach to defining their culture, offer flexibility in where and how they work, and are provided with the right tools to succeed.”

Experts aver going through the pandemic, many employers had to adapt their business in accommodating a workforce away from the office and this has played a key role in accelerating digitization for many organizations.

Director at Marc Ellis, Aws Ismail says, “This in turn, has made it possible for employees to have more flexibility of where and when they do their work. I think Covid has really highlighted the topic within management for the importance of physical employee presence within their organization. From working with clients ranging from international companies to local entities, I have realized that it all really depends on the scope of work, industry and tasks assigned to employees.”

“For example, on-site customer interactions, including front line workers who interact with customers, which can be in sales, retail, banks, and amongst other places which are conducted via interactions with people, would require on site presence. However, some computer-based office work including administrative, design or other roles which have a minimum need for interaction will not need to be on-site and can be done remotely,” adds Ismail.


But they point out that people need to be mindful that the acceleration of digitization has also identified automation as the future of many traditional jobs, potentially leading to a reduced need of human workforce.

Pramod Sharda, CEO, IceWarp, Middle East and India, opines, “As organizations shift to more remote work operations, explore the critical competencies, employees will need to collaborate digitally, and be prepared to adjust employee experience strategies.”

He adds, “While embracing the automation and migration to the work from home (WFH) model, employees have also voiced their needs about prioritizing health and well-being along with the requirements for tools that enable seamless collaboration. But systemic change is needed and not just personal: processes, policies and technology must be reviewed and amended to ensure that they are created with everyone’s success and seamless collaboration in mind.”

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