Remote work is here to stay and employers should get used to it

Remote work is here to stay and will be a non-negotiable when it come to attracting talent – even after the pandemic.

People have become accustomed to working remotely since the advent of the COVID-19 pandemic, and research is finding that they want to continue doing so for the foreseeable future. Now, a new survey has also found that people are more likely to quit a company that doesn’t offer the option.

A new survey of 1,000 US and UK workers found that an overwhelming majority – 90% – of respondents say they are more likely to stay longer with employers that offer the option to work from home. They also said that, since they have been working remotely, productivity has increased and internal communications have improved. There is a strong preference to continue with remote work.

Findings also include the following:

  • 84.9% are respondents are more positive about working from home since the start of the pandemic.
  • 52.2% would like to work from home permanently.
  • 36.1% would prefer a mix of home and office.
  • Asked what they enjoy most about working remotely, the top answer is the commute (49.3%).
  • This was followed by enjoying extra time in the mornings (23.9%).

These results suggest strongly that employees really like working from home.

Communication and productivity have not suffered with remote work

The survey also asked about internal communications and productivity. Findings regarding internal communications were also positive:

  • A majority of respondents (50.9%) feel that they are communicating more with colleagues while working from home than they were before.
  • 63.2% say that their employer is communicating more.
  • 75.7% believe that employers are putting more effort into communicating.

What is interesting about this finding is that communication is often cited as a reason for wanting employees on site – suggesting that it will suffer if they’re not there in person. I think many of us would agree that our experience has been contrary to these expectations and that we do, indeed, spend far more time communicating with managers and team members now that we’re not in the office.

Regarding productivity, 70.5% of respondents feel they are more productive when working from home. Workvivo, the company that conducted the survey, observes that this finding echoes the results of similar surveys, including a two-year longitudinal study from Stanford University, which found that productivity increases among remote workers.

When it comes to attracting top talent in the future, remote work is going to be a non-negotiable for jobs that do not absolutely require onsite presence, like labour and face-to-face interactions. Businesses would be smart to weave this into their employer brands sooner rather than later, and figure out what that means for them as an organization.

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