Creating better hybrid workplace designs by adding a third space

It seems most companies have two options in their hybrid workplace design.

Working at the office OR at home.

However, I miss a third option in this narrative around the hybrid workplace.

Companies need to offer a third place to their employees to support them to do their best work.

As a location independent entrepreneur I have worked remotely for almost a decade now and I have worked in all kinds of places, most of them not recommended by the way.

(Working at the beach, however tempting, is best left for some photos to show off on Instagram and don’t get me started about the wifi on that 14 day transatlantic cruise!)

I sometimes work from home, but have a preference for co-working spaces and combine this with working from a nice coffeeshop from time to time for a different buzz and a healthy lunch.

I find that co-working spaces, in a way, are the best of both worlds.

They offer the facilities of a great office space and you are surrounded by other people that are also working – helping you to get in that productive flow.

And you can focus without being disturbed as would happen in a co-located team setup.

Local co-working spaces can minimise the commute (mine is a 10 min walk away) while still bring structure to the workday.

In a hybrid world, our workspace might be digital, but our psychical workplace is important (read the academic research about this here).

Companies should be providing a variety of options for employees to work from in their hybrid workplace design.

Our favorite solution? Upflex.

A few years ago, I came in contact with Ginger Dhaliwal, one of the founders of Upflex, a SAAS provider for the hybrid workspace.

Upflex is a platform that allows your employees to book flexible workplaces and meeting rooms in co-working spaces around the world.

It can also be used to optimise the capacity of your own office space and with the reporting function it gives you insights in the behaviour of your employees.

Ginger and me met in an event as pioneers in the Future of Work space and we shared a vision that the world is moving towards more distributed and global workforce – a development that later was accelerated by the pandemic.

I immediately recognised the value of the platform, both from my own experience and as Future of Work Strategist.

Over the last years, we partnered on several occasions and worked together in various projects., and I have recommended Upflex to various forward thinking leadership teams and HR Directors.

(Full disclosure here: I am not working as an affiliate. Just really believe in the value of the platform to create a better world of work that will benefit us all.)

Today I was very pleased to be able to call Ginger to congratulate her and the rest of the team with raising 30 million in funding.

“Your success is inevitable” I said to her.

Because offering the best employee experience in a hybrid world needs a third option: working from co-working spaces or from local meeting or collaboration hubs.

Companies should, and will, be offering a third space option, if not this year, then next year, or the year after.

The third place is important for productivity, well-being, and for cost reductions.

And companies will need to find a tech solution that supports this third space.

Upflex is Hello Monday Club’s favorite solution and we are happy that mayor investors have recognised this too.

Below you will find the product demonstration Ginger did for our Hello Monday Club Members, make sure to check it out!