CORE HR, REMOTE WORK

Why your hybrid company needs an employee finder

Hybrid companies thrive after the lockdowns, providing employees with a new working reality and new ways to achieve a work-life balance. Yet the hybrid transformation can break havoc in the company, and having a good employee finder is one of the ways to prevent the chaos from spreading.

According to one of our recent blog posts about remote work in Europe before and after COVID up to 40% of EU-based employees were switched to remote work). This includes the groups considered “unmovable” before, including the public sector and state administration among others.

With thousands of people knowing the joys of working from home, it becomes hardly possible to get back to the full-time-office working model and the hybrid transformation gets the spotlight.

What is a hybrid model?

A hybrid work at its core is the model of running the company, where the physical location of the employee doesn’t matter. This encourages the organization to hire remote-only employees or enable the local people to stay at home and enjoy the benefits of more flexible working arrangements.

On the other hand, the ideal hybrid organization provides a shared working space, where every employee is invited. Currently, there are three major models of the hybrid work:

  • Office-centric – where the office remains the key place of operations, with mandatory office days and limited remote-days,
  • Remote-centric – the exact opposite of the model described above, with employees actively encouraged to work from home,
  • Balanced – the middle ground between the models described above, coming with all benefits and challenges of the most flexible approach. The aim is to combine the advantages and discard the disadvantages of the other types.

More about the pros, cons, advantages, and challenges of the models can be found in our blog post about hybrid work models.

What is an employee finder?

Even in the most traditional and conservative organizations, where hybrid transformation is considered a heresy, there is an employee finder of some form. It can be compared to the Yellow Pages – an antiquated type of advertisement.

The Yellow Pages took the form of a thick book full of contact information with multiple entities – from plumbers to dentists to accountants and wealth managers. In the times before the internet, one had quick access to any professional needed, making this book convenient.

A good employee finder is an internal yellow page, with contact information and a brief description of every employee in the company.

Why employee finder is so important in a hybrid company

The traditional office comes with various disadvantages and limitations. Yet it also comes with some pros and having all people gathered in one place is a key one. People are not distributed in hundreds of places but are limited to company-controlled spaces like local branches or buildings.

This made searching for a particular person easier. And get ruined when people are decentralized and scattered around in their houses. Considering that, an employee finder can be extremely helpful when:

Contacting someone

Providing the rest of the team with contact information is the core feature of any employee finder. Depending on the company policy it can include a Slack nickname, job email, telephone number, or anything else if it matters.

A more sophisticated system like the one provided by Calamari can include additional information, for example, tips on the best way to contact someone – for example the preferred channel or time.

Why is it important in a hybrid company

Facilitating the contact between the employees is one of the most challenging aspects of running a hybrid company. With a bit more distributed workforce, having a centralised database of all contacts can be extremely helpful – for example knowing that one is rarely checking email but is always on Slack can save a lot of time and frustration to one who got used to another way of working.

Checking one’s placement

An employee finder can also include information about the physical location of a particular employee. It can be as specific as a desk in the room, or as broad as a country or a city – everything depends on the company policy.

Why is it important in a hybrid company

This feature is useful for distributed teams. Knowing that one will rarely visit the office because he or she is placed in another town can be useful when planning the team meetings – for example, always book a conferencing room with a good speaker and microphone to support the online meetings in the best way possible.

Also, having the information about the shift in the time zones can save a great deal of time and frustration when using a real-time communication means like Slack or finding a good time to arrange a meeting.

Onboarding

Every new person in the company faces the stress of “being a stranger to everybody”. Thus, having a centralized database of every employee can make the first day much easier. A typical employee finder includes the image, the contact info, and the short job description, so the onboarded person can navigate easier and not be stressed about not memorizing the names fast enough.

Depending on the additional fields in the employee intranet software, the employee can add some information, for example, if one has a pet or follows a vegan diet. This creates a space to encourage the employee for more contacts or find some friends in the company.

Why is it important in a hybrid company

Onboarding into a hybrid company is even more challenging than in a traditional one. Sometimes the hybrid employee finder will be the only way to see the faces and know something more about the coworkers.

Finding a particular specialist

In a larger company, it is easy to get confused about the available talent pool and employees. An employee finder stores a piece of reliable information about the skills the company has onboard and if one needs particular support, the employee finder is the best place to start searching.

Why is it important in a hybrid company

In a remote company, it is possible to have “a person unseen by anyone” yet working and available at once. Without a centralized database about people working in the company, it is possible to mismanage human resources. A good example is to hire an external freelancer while having an onboard specialist at disposal, waiting for new challenges – at home.

Checking the availability and working hours

Last but not least, the more sophisticated employee finder can hold information about the availability of a particular employee and his or her working hours. For example, it is not mandatory to work in a particular time frame. One can be obliged to work with clients from the US and by that adjust his or her working day properly.

Another one can be a night owl and more willing to start his or her working day just before his or her colleagues' lunch. Having this mapped and available makes communication easier.

Why is it important in a hybrid company

With a highly distributed and decentralized hybrid company, all the challenges mentioned above grow. There can be a night owl in another timezone, a guy working for the US and adjusting his EU-based working day, etc. The combinations are limited only by imagination and real-life business reality.

Summary

An employee finder comes as a central database about the employees in a hybrid company – one of just a few signs that the organization is something more than a crowd of freelancers to manage. When used properly it comes with a myriad of benefits for hybrid and traditional companies alike.

If you wish to talk more about the ways the employee finder supports the hybrid companies, don’t hesitate to contact us now!

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