Employees and burdens of hybrid work meeting inequality
With hybrid work now a permanent professional fixture, workers have come to expect new levels of flexibility. However, employees now demand even more from their hybrid work experience – namely greater meeting equity.
Simply defined, meeting equity ensures that remote employees receive the same level of engagement, collaboration, and access to a meeting room experience as those who physically sit around the table.
As a new recently released Barco ClickShare survey found, hybrid workers are growing more concerned about perceptions of an unequal and less productive meeting experience while apart from their colleagues, and many are going as far as to consider new opportunities at organizations where they believe they will be more included.
Can you hear me?
After nearly two years of familiarity with remote and hybrid work, the survey found that more than one-third (35 percent) of workers still have trouble fully engaging during hybrid meetings.
A significant source of this disconnect emanates from a perception of oversight, as 28 percent find it difficult to have their voices heard when joining hybrid meetings from an offsite location. Twice as many remote hybrid participants (56 percent) likewise feel that meeting leaders cater too heavily to those in a physical meeting space when conducting the conversation.
The majority of workers (80 percent) prefer the hybrid model, while 71 percent still struggle with the frictions and technical challenges that come with hybrid engagement.
Featuring input from more than 4,000 global workers across varying occupations and locations, the survey also captures the technical, functional, and emotional complications that have emerged across the broader hybrid work transition.
Technical Frustration: A Gateway to Resignation?
The survey notes an urgency for businesses to refine their hybrid work and meeting equity strategies. With businesses feeling the impact of The Great Resignation, Barco found that hybrid technology and flexibility no longer are simply a means of operation, but rather a differentiator in recruiting and retaining top talent.
Nearly three in four workers (71 percent) say they still struggle with joining and navigating hybrid meetings. However, these technical frustrations now appear to have a greater impact on their professional satisfaction and are potentially motivating them to explore new opportunities.
Nearly one in three (30 percent) workers say they will consider a job offer from another company with a well-defined hybrid policy, which includes clear guidelines and tools for successful and efficient hybrid meeting participation.
Working to see and be seen
While hybrid workers are vocalizing their challenges, Barco found that the return to on-site conference rooms isn’t without its own pains. More specifically, employees are still working to replicate the flexible and convenient meeting experience they’ve enjoyed while remote.
Though 85 percent of businesses have at least one dedicated video conferencing room in their space, only 39 percent of IT managers feel these rooms are adequately prepared for a “Bring Your Own Meeting” style of work. As a result, nearly two in three (65 percent) workers have trouble mastering the differing connectivity points and laptop compatibility variables of their office’s video conferencing rooms.