Hybrid Working at AAB
At AAB we’re always looking to progress both to enhance our awesome client experience and provide a platform for our people which reflects this. The latest changes follow discussions and feedback from the team around working policies in ‘the next…
Blog22nd Apr 2021
At AAB we’re always looking to progress both to enhance our awesome client experience and provide a platform for our people which reflects this. The latest changes follow discussions and feedback from the team around working policies in ‘the next normal’. As a result, we are happy to announce that we have introduced hybrid working for all staff (as of 1 April 2021) and enshrined this in our employment contracts for all existing and new staff across our offices in Aberdeen, Edinburgh and London.
Hybrid working enables the team to get both personal and professional satisfaction from working from anywhere to suit particular circumstances, knowing that, working in the office, working at clients or elsewhere is part of what keeps us engaged and able to deliver the awesome service to our clients and each other.
Firm of the Future & Technology
At AAB we started our journey towards becoming a Firm of the Future back in 2018, recognising that by the early 2020s, the profession was going to look very different.
Our project was largely focused on understanding agile methodology, looking at the interaction of agile with our digital strategy and adopting it into our everyday working lives. So being flexible and agile in our work isn’t new to us, and we were already looking at a more flexible model of employment before the pandemic. That said I don’t think anyone could have predicted how quickly the change would happen!
Flexible working is great as it enables us all (the business and the team) to adapt to busier and quieter periods throughout the year. Hybrid working takes this a step further, by recognising the benefits of a changing working environment to enhance productivity and meet the needs of the day. The investment we’ve made in our tech and ability to ‘plug and play’ makes it all possible – people really can work from anywhere and our team are empowered to make their own decisions.
Awesome Client Experience
As part of this process, we have looked at our tech and tried to gain an understanding of how clients want to access our services. In many circumstances working from home/anywhere has benefitted client experience, especially for our international clients and we will continue to listen to them and meet their needs.
Creating a policy enshrined into our employment contracts is one thing but agreeing our Guiding Principles around hybrid and flexible with the team brings this to life and ensures that it becomes steeped in our culture – it’s how we roll!
Everyone at AAB knows it’s all about delivery, and so there’s no need for detailed rules. Taking into consideration our client needs, those of our team members, project requirements and ensuring they are operating safely and securely are all paramount and part of our commitment to maintaining health, safety, and wellbeing at work.
We also recognise that taking steps like these are required to retain and attract the best people based on how they want to work, which probably isn’t in an office, 9am-5pm, five days a week.
The team are in control of their own work patterns and this approach helps to facilitate a better personal/professional balance. It also means we can recruit from almost anywhere going forward!
Using Working Space Differently
This approach will inevitably lead to a change in how we use our working space. In Edinburgh and London, our offices have always been flexible workspaces in anticipation of working pattern changes so we have great data on what works well and what doesn’t when we consider our future requirements at our HQ in Aberdeen.
Whilst we will redevelop some of the space at Kingshill View into areas for collaborative working, the changes will likely bring opportunities for other “good neighbours” to join law firm Addleshaw Goddard who currently occupy one of our six wings.
AAB in the Next Normal
We are still developing an understanding of what the next normal will look like but feedback on the new hybrid working policy since discussions about it got underway last year have been extremely positive.
Whatever happens, our focus will continue to be on delivering for our clients and embracing flexible/hybrid working to meet the individual needs of our team. We’ll achieve this by trusting our people, having clear accountability, embracing a culture of delivery and awesome client experience.
If you have any questions or would like to find out more information, please get in touch with Graeme Allan.