SEATTLE — "Well, we're going to need to be really flexible about thinking about our workspaces as we move forward,” Jaime Teevan, chief scientist for Microsoft’s experiences and devices said. “And actually, you see, something like two-thirds of businesses are actually reconfiguring their spaces for hybrid work. So there's a lot of thinking that we're going to need to do. The big challenge is we don't know what it's going to look like.”
Teevan has done a lot of research on the process of going back to work, and what a hybrid model might entail.
The research shows the ideal amount of time to work from home is about two and a half days a week, she said.
“After about two and a half days a week at home, you start losing some of the social connections that you get from interaction,” Teevan said. “You see job satisfaction peak for people who work remotely at about 15 hours a week.”
Her team at Microsoft has spent hundreds of hours pouring over information generated from employee surveys, telemetry data, and customer panels, discovering the pros and cons of working in an office versus working from home.
There are a lot of benefits to remote work in terms of what you’re able to get done, Teevan said. With fewer distractions, people get more done.
“It’s really good for that focused work,” she said. “It’s less good for the new ideas, the collaboration, the spontaneous conversations that we have. We've all been socially isolated for the past year. And that's highly correlated with productivity.”