A BOLTON marketing agency has deemed its hybrid working approach a success after the pandemic forced businesses to rethink their working models.

Last week The Bolton News reported that fewer Bolton employees were going into the office than before Covid forced many people to work from home.

Many people and businesses have had to alter their daily lives due to virus, so we spoke to The Audit Lab, a Bolton-based digital marketing agency, about their approach to on and off-site working, and how that has affected productivity and staff wellbeing.

Claire Compton, commercial director at The Audit Lab, said: “The pandemic obviously forced a lot of businesses to rethink their working models, and with us, it was no different.

"We all worked from home from the lockdown and then soon introduced the hybrid model of three days in the office and two days working from home - alternating - very early on, as working from home worked so well for us.

"We will always listen to our staff to see what works, but it’s been that successful, we’re continuing with it.

The Bolton News: Claire Compton, commercial director at The Audit LabClaire Compton, commercial director at The Audit Lab

“When we asked our staff in a poll if they preferred it this way, we got a unanimous ‘yes’. Some said it helped with house management and childcare, whilst others said they were actually more productive without the typical office distractions. 

“And when it comes to productivity levels, we haven’t seen any drastic changes. If anything, they’ve increased. This is in part because we made sure to jump on the right tools early on to maintain productivity, like Slack and Harvest.

Slack enables us to have dedicated client channels to share all updates, and our teams do weekly stand-ups on projects - either virtually or in the office.

“Harvest is a tool that ensures we monitor resources and hours spent on projects with handy analytical reporting tools.

"All of our employees log their hours daily to client accounts or internal admin tasks and meetings etc.

"Our account managers then constantly feedback the ongoing project hours with mid and end-of-month breakdowns to keep every team aware of what might need some extra attention.

"It’s a very useful cog in a well-oiled machine. 

“So, all in all, working from home proved to be more productive for us and gave us opportunities to introduce new tools and systems that enable us to keep processes running smoothly.

We also value face-to-face meetings and maintaining office days for efficiency, creativity and collaboration - it’s a perfect balance for us and our field.”