As offices around the world continue to open for business, many companies are expecting their employees to return full time. However, new research suggests this isn’t likely to happen, the majority enjoy the flexibility they’ve been given to work from anywhere and are willing to leave jobs to maintain it, writes Helen Kruger, CEO of Troye.Employees prefer flexibility and will leave their jobs to get it. This is according to a global survey conducted by OnePoll on behalf of Citrix Systems. Nearly 60% of the 6 500 workers polled in 10 countries, prefer hybrid work, and 69 percent will leave their current jobs if it isn’t an option.

People have now experienced the positive impact of flexible work, from engagement and productivity to work-life balance, mental health and the environment. They now expect their employers to embrace it and invest in tools and processes that empower them to work when, where and how they work best.

The flexible work model is in full effect. Of those employees surveyed:

* 71% work or plan to work in the office between one and four days per week

* 56% are or plan to be in the office full time

* 49% work from shared and communal workspaces between one and four days per week

* 49% are fully remote and plan to be permanently

Work today is not an office, it’s a place where people get their best work done, it can be at home, in the office, on the road or anywhere in between. Every employee is different, and companies need to recognise and accommodate their unique wants and needs if they hope to attract and retain the people, they need to support their business.

For instance, many respondents to the Citrix-OnePoll survey want to work from home at least part of the time for the following reasons:

* Better work-life balance (42%)

* Save time and costs associated with commuting (35%)

* Fewer distractions (20%)

* More productive (20%)

* Colleagues/manager are not in the office (19%)

* Don’t have a dedicated space in the office (7%)

* Restaurants and amenities near office are limited or closed (6%)

Other respondents indicated they would like to head to the office at least once a week for the following reasons:

* Feel more productive and engaged (36%)

* Colleagues/manager are there (36%)

* Better access to information (33%)

* Provides a separation between work and home life (29%)

* Access to better technology (28%)

* Less distractions (25%)

* Greater collaboration (24%)

* Better opportunities to develop/advance career (16%)

* Technology needed to facilitate hybrid work is too complicated – dialling in remote workers, sharing presentations and files, etc (14%)

* No dedicated workspace at home (13%)

In addition to where they work, employees who participated in the Citrix-OnePoll survey also want flexibility in when they work. Thirty percent want the freedom to choose how often they work in the office as opposed to the company mandating a set number of days and 76% would work a four-day week if they could maintain their salaries.

Giving employees the flexibility to match their work environment and schedules to the outcomes they are trying to deliver, gives them the space to succeed. If the Citrix-OnePoll survey is any indication, companies will need to do it if they hope to attract and retain the talent they need, to move their business forward.

As the numbers reveal, 17% of employees polled view flexibility as more important than salary and 69% would consider leaving their job if it isn’t offered.

Hybrid work is the foundation on which the future of work will be built, and companies that recognise this and put processes and technologies in place to support it, can cultivate the flexible, agile and empowered workforce they need to innovate and grow.

Share This