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How hybrid working can save the Public Sector £billions

Make hybrid working, work

As organisations implement their return-to-work strategies there are significant opportunities for the public sector. No plan will work without putting employee wellbeing at its heart, but can organisations also be compliant and realise significant cost efficiencies? The answer is “yes”, but the problem is that most don’t have the time or resources to figure out how to do this.  The pandemic has catalysed the adoption of hybrid models, having completely changed workplace practices. Public sector organisations now have the chance to reform the way they work and make a significant impact on the public purse.

 

Let’s fundamentally rethink the way we work.

Post pandemic, many private sector organisations have embraced a digital-first approach to work, which means that where work is done is less important than getting it done. This means that setting and tracking objectives becomes far more important than checking someone is at their desk on time.

 

Cross-functional teams used to operate in the same physical location, but technology has rendered this less important. Organisations can now focus on issues and tasks rather than locations; they can create a “digital workplace” around a single problem, bringing together all the necessary people and resources in a virtual environment. Using such digital tools and platforms, these teams can easily communicate, collaborate, and manage workflows – establishing clear protocols for how tasks will be assigned and completed, utilising physical locations as appropriate but being unconstrained by them.

 

The improvements flexible working delivers to employee work/life balance have been widely covered, but the implications have far greater impact for public finances – savings that can be re-invested into front line services.

 

How hotdesking can free up money for front-line services.

The big win from hybrid for the public sector is in office space optimisation. Whilst some public sector workers need to be on-site every day, many do not. The more people work remotely, the more there will be empty desks in those offices. Any organisation operating a ‘3 days in, 2 days out’ policy automatically has a 40% efficiency opportunity in their office space requirements. That’s a huge number, all of which can be re-purposed for front line services.

 

Capture the efficiency.

Technology like HotDesk+ makes hybrid working, work. It enables a hot desk policy by allowing people to quickly and easily book desks when they are coming into the office. Whilst it has all the Covid features you would expect to bring people back to the office in a safe and controlled manner such a self-certification, contract tracing, and social distancing. However, as we move on from the pandemic, the public sector can mirror the private sector who are already using workplace management solutions to identify and realise huge efficiencies. Bodies can then decide how best to use those gains, whether by re-purposing space for the benefit of the communities they serve or reducing their reliance on expensive 3rd party office providers.

 

Key to this is management information and tools like HotDesk+ can provide timely and accurate data on desk utilisation. The question facilities managers/CEOs/CFOs/HRDs should be asking is: “how much public money are we wasting on empty desks?” With the cost of a desk in central London set at an average of £9k pa, a huge opportunity needs to be grasped. And whilst the cost is lower in the regions, the saving could still have a significant impact on public services at a time when funds are at more of a premium than ever before.

 

For an informal consultation, please message me at martin.beck@hotdeskplus.com

To find out more about how HotDeskPlus can help you optimise your workspace, save money and improve the overall wellbeing of your employees, sign up for a free trial today.

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