Weekly workplace trends digest: data on hybrid work from Microsoft, Boeing layoff cuts 150 finance jobs

This week we are back with a fresh outlook on future work trends. Once again, layoffs are reverberating through the market with both startups and industry leaders cutting their teams short to face the economic downturn. 

At the same time, more data shows that leaders should prioritize employees if they want organizations to thrive – a task many have been neglecting due to productivity paranoia or operational burdens. 

Learn more about the challenges leaders are facing and tips to get through the period of uncertainty by exploring this week’s top stories. To catch up on key future of work trends, take a look at other episodes of our weekly digest

Startup layoff news

1. With new cuts, Klarna joins the ranks of companies having to conduct more than one layoff | TechCrunch

“Never say never” which may be especially true for Klarna, a Stockholm-based online payment platform. Commenting on the company’s lay-offs three weeks ago, CEO Sebastian Siemiatkowski claimed the startup is done downscaling its workforce. Yet, last week media outlets reported a new Klarna layoff announcement involving up to 100 employees. 

2. Mark Zuckerberg has long put employees on a ’30-day list’ to find a new role or leave—now the list is growing | Fortune

2022 has been rocky for Meta which saw colossal stock dips and earlier reported its first decline in revenue since going public. In response, Zuckerberg turns to restructuring and laying people off: those who make it to the infamous 30-day list have to either get rehired or leave. 

3. Boeing to Cut About 150 Finance Jobs in the U.S. | Wall Street Journal

Following an earlier announcement on its plans to reduce operations in IT and corporate departments, Boeing announced a wave of job layoffs last week. The company will reportedly be letting about 150 people from the finance department go. 

4. Kitty Hawk, the electric aircraft moonshot backed by Larry Page, is shutting down | Bloomberg

Kitty Hawk, an electric aircraft project backed by Larry Page announced its shutdown last week in corporate social media updates. Reportedly, the company is planning to shift focus to Heaviside, its other promising VTOL project. 

Remote and hybrid work

1. Hybrid Work Is Just Work. Are We Doing It Wrong? | Microsoft

Microsoft has published its new survey, gathering the opinions of over 20,000 people across 11 countries. The data converges to three key points: leaders need to end the productivity paranoia, pay more attention to building relationships if they want to facilitate office return, and keep putting effort in talent retention to turn the tide on job hopping. 

2. To Get People Back in Office, Make it Social | Harvard Business Review

Echoing the insights proven by Microsoft data, a Harvard Business Review article by Chris Capossela emphasizes the importance of offices as a social environment for hybrid work. At this point, the author argues, it’s clear no one comes to the office for productive work alone but connecting with people keeps us coming back. Leaders should acknowledge the social needs of their teams and make the a permanent feature of office space design. 

3. CFOs see hybrid work as a cost-cutting opportunity | Fortune

The survey of over 250 CFOs conducted by the International Workplace Group shows that 82% of financial executives see the hybrid work model as a more affordable model compared to full RTO. Up until now, employee well-being and work-life balance were the key benefits of the approach. While they hold true as well, the economic downturn encourages more teams to consider creating hybrid work environments as a cost-cutting measure.  

4. Microsoft and LinkedIn CEOs on the new era of hybrid work | Bloomberg Technology

In the new episode of Bloomberg Technology that typically covers game-changing trends, Microsoft and LinkedIn CEOs analyze the latest data signals and share their experiences of managing hybrid workforces. 

Team management and employee experience 

1. Does this need to be a meeting? The new rules of engagement for collaboration | Slack

Ever since the pandemic, the number of meetings teams have in a day has been gradually increasing – now people are so double-booked and burdened by back-to-back calls that 94% no longer find getting together a productive collaboration strategy. What’s the alternative? According to Slack, it is in the ability to skillfully mix synchronous and asynchronous communication channels. 

2. 6 Effective Coaching Strategies for Your Team | Entrepreneur 

Coaching is an excellent way to bond with your team and improve engagement. While building an effective coaching program is a considerable commitment, following these simple roles will help leaders get better at connecting with and guiding their teams.

3. 4-Day Workweek Brings No Loss of Productivity, Companies in Experiment Say | New York Times

Last week, the 4-Day Week Global pilot program reported the results of a trial that invited 73 companies in Great Britain to test providing teams with on paid day-off a week. According to the data, the outcomes were overwhelmingly positive – most participants remarked an increase in productivity and satisfaction.  

Future of workplace technology

1. NSF greenlights 14 new ‘Future of Work’ research projects | National Science Foundation 

According to a statement issued by the NSF last week, the foundation will invest over $29 million in projects related to the future of work. In a three-year program, researchers will work on improving job safety and workplace communication. According to the statement, selected projects will help “shape a safer, more equitable future of work with opportunities for all”. 

2. It’s time to upskill in cloud tech | Unleash

The unprecedented pace of digital led to the deepening of a gap in security talent. Now, most organizations’ leaders report that their teams have a security problem and struggle to navigate cloud technologies. Increasing the headcount in a tight job market remains difficult, so reskilling and upskilling employees might be a better way to go. 

3. Winning the battle for talent: five ways technology can attract and retain skilled employees | The Guardian 

While the world may be headed for recession, the job market in the UK is struggling to fight talent shortage. In a landscape where job openings outnumber the unemployed population, here are the strategies and collaboration tools employers can use to attract top-tier professionals. 

4. Remote workplace technology boosts employee productivity | TechTarget 

In a three-part series on technology and the future of work, TechTarget reviews the benefits of working from home and examines the impact of technology in the workplace. 

The Workplace of the Future digest is brought to you by oVice: a virtual office platform committed to making remote and hybrid work more fulfilling and socially satisfying while keeping its key benefits – flexibility and autonomy. We bring teams together in a virtual space that is more seamless and spontaneous than traditional collaboration tools. 

Learn how oVice has helped over 2,200 organization leaders streamline their workplaces. Also, you can explore the features of the platform by visiting the tour space

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