As the pandemic is receding, we’re slowly and painfully getting out of our pajamas and returning to the offices. Or at least, some of us are. And it is very painful for all of us – employees, managers, executives, and different kinds of leaders. Most of all, it is extremely painful for the human capital teams. They are under fire from all sides to ‘solve’ the office problem and the hybrid work app dilemma.

Team leaders and managers are trying desperately to encourage collaboration with their teams and promote more face-to-face interactions. They know that human interaction plays a key role in retention and people’s job satisfaction. Thus, they are demanding a ‘solution’ from their human capital teams that they can implement. They are waiting for a corporate policy that, in a way, forces people to spend more time in the office. On the other hand, many employees are pushing back and have their CVs ready to fire back if a strict policy is forced on them…

The Hybrid Work Dilemma

The Hybrid Work Dilemma is growing bigger and bigger as days go by – to force people back in the office for at least a day or two, or to allow them the full flexibility and eventually never come to the office? One thing is clear – the world is going hybrid. The big question is HOW? Who should be solving this hybrid work problem? What policy should we apply – strict or loose? Should we use an app or do it somehow manually in Excel and Outlook?

We will leave the ‘who should own the hybrid work problem’ question for another post but in any case, you should come up with a policy or at least guidelines to help your employees collaborate more effectively. Both strict or loose hybrid work policies have pros and cons and in reality, it comes down to the company culture and the maturity of the organization. It’s more important to have a policy or guidelines at the moment than to be perfect. You can make it perfect along the way. Either way, there’s something equally important for both policy types – which is the answer to the question of how to implement this hybrid work thing? Should you use an app, do it in Excel and Outlook or maybe there’s another way?

Do you really need another app on your phone?

Convincing employees to download and start using yet another app to interact with the office is no easy task. We already use a ton of apps and platforms to get work done, new software can get lost in the shuffle, and employee adoption can be difficult. This is especially true for office apps!

On the other hand, managing a hybrid work policy in excel or Outlook can be a nightmare for all parties involved – employees, managers, and office and HC professionals.

Without further due, there’s a way to implement a proper hybrid work policy without an app that your employees will love. The secret sauce is high-quality, deep integrations with the tools your employees already use!

At OfficeRnD, we built integrations with the most used Microsoft tools to streamline setup and make it extremely easy for employees to book rooms and desks without having to download an app or log into another web portal. Our seamless connection with Microsoft Teams, Active Directory/Office365, and Outlook creates a simple onboarding process for employees and administrators alike. 

Seeing is believing, so go ahead and click the play button below:

OfficeRnD Hybrid will be presented as an extra tab inside of Teams that employees can click on to interact with your workplace.

Within OfficeRnD Hybrid employees are presented with a visual floor plan they can use to pan and zoom to find the exact space where they would like to work. It’s also easy for employees to see and modify all bookings to better plan their schedules.

See who’s in the office and manage bookings

Employees can also use the Teams integration to see who has booked spaces in the office on certain days. They can easily search by name to see where their colleague is sitting so that they can book a desk close to them. This feature will help teams book their return to the office easier and feel confident about who they are seating near. Furthermore, employees can manage their own or teams’ schedules within Teams, place a delegated booking for a day, or make it a recurring one – for example, every Wednesday.

Authenticate and onboard employees quickly

The Microsoft Teams integration was designed to make it easy for employees to connect with Active Directory and authenticate their accounts so that they can get started booking desks quickly. OfficeRnD Hybrid can be accessed by employees through the Teams desktop or web applications as well as on the mobile phone.

We believe this integration will simplify the hybrid onboarding process and increase adoption among employees.

Sync it all with Outlook

The next step is to have your workplace and hybrid work policy fully integrated within Microsoft Outlook. The ability to book rooms and desks from Outlook is yet another place where your employees will be able to place a booking. Our bi-directional sync will ensure that all calendars are working well and always in sync.

Get your workplace, fully integrated with the Microsoft tools

By providing an immersive hybrid workplace experience, natively integrated with Office365, Microsoft Teams, and Outlook, you can save a lot of time for your employees and increase their office satisfaction. No one needs another app and no one needs a new tab in their browser. OfficeRnD Hybrid can blend and extend the Microsoft tools with all you need to enable hybrid working:

  • Login with Office365 or AD credentials
  • Find and reserve a desk on the floor plan within Teams
  • Book a meeting room from Teams or Outlook
  • Schedule team office visits from Teams

We can help you solve the hybrid work dilemma without forcing a new app on your employees. Get in touch with us to schedule a 1:1 consultancy with our hybrid work experts.

Miro Miroslavov
CEO and Co-founder of OfficeRnD
Miro Miroslavov is a software engineer turned into a tech entrepreneur. In 2015 he co-founded OfficeRnD - a leading flex space and hybrid work management platform. As a CEO at OfficeRnD, he grew the company from inception to a leading software vendor that serves thousands of customers worldwide. He is a big fan of flexible working and is on a mission to "Making Flexible Working the Way of Working".