Remote work vs hybrid work. What’s the difference?

Remote work vs hybrid work. What’s the difference?

If you’ve been searching online for remote jobs in the UK, you’ve probably come across the terms hybrid and remote working models in the job descriptions.

While most people understand the term ‘remote’ and ‘hybrid’, here’s what they actually mean when it comes to employment.

First of all, both models allow employees to work from home. But there are some differences between the two that are worth knowing before you commit to a role. Deciding which of the two work models (maybe both) suits you best can help you narrow down your remote job search and find exactly what you are looking for.

Remote vs hybrid work models: Here’s what you need to know

A remote company has a work-from-home work force. All employees work from home without a main office or head office. A remote company will often recruit staff all over the world in different time zones. This allows companies to hire the very best talent worldwide without worrying about geographical restrictions.

A hybrid company allows some employees to work remotely while others will work on-site in the office or head office. Employees usually do not get to choose if they work from home or work in the office. A hybrid company decides which employees or roles will work remotely, and which are required to work on-site.

What it’s like working for a hybrid company?

Working for a hybrid company as opposed to a fully remote company may bring a few challenges to consider. After a short time working at a hybrid company, you will notice that there’s an automatic divide between those who work in the office, and those who work remotely from home. This is the main difference between the hybrid model and remote model.

Employees who see each other every day in person will form closer social bonds and build relationships much quicker. Working from home, you will naturally feel a bit isolated and not part of the same group or company. You may start feeling that you are missing out and being overlooked, which is something you need to prepare for mentally.

Working remotely at a hybrid company will often mean you’ll need to work the same hours as those who work in the office. A fully remote company tends to be much more flexible than a hybrid company when it comes to your working schedule. You may also have to be available for video meetings at short notice.

It's possible that you are overlooked for promotions compared to your office coworkers. Getting noticed for your work and achievements will mean you need to make more noise and let your bosses know of your intentions. As you are not physically interacting with managers and team leaders as often, you will need to adjust and arrange more face-time meetings to get noticed and push for promotions.

What it’s like working for a remote company?

A company where everyone works remotely tends to be much more flexible. You’ll often be allowed to create your own work from home schedule that works best for you.

Fully remote companies will generally use an asynchronous style of communication.

Asynchronous communication means remote working employees send each other messages, but they’re not expected to respond straight away. Messages tend to be much more detailed so coworkers can fully understand the task at hand without having to raise questions. This way, remote workers and remote teams waste less time and are much more productive.

With everyone working remotely, you should find gaining promotion etc not as difficult as with a hybrid company. You won’t have to compete with in-office workers who have the advantage of being physically closer to managers and team leaders.

Hybrid or remote, what's better for you?

It’s fair to say that most people are open to both working models. Not all companies are the same, and before you take any role it’s good to gain an understanding of how the company operates before you commit. As we have discussed above, the main difference between a remote company and hybrid is that with a hybrid company, you will not feel part of the same company as much. There will be a natural divide of those working in the office, and those at home working remotely. If you would like more flexibility in how you work and to feel more part of the group, then choosing a fully remote working company will likely be the better option.


Read next: Are we returning to the office after COVID? Or is the future working remotely?

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