While vaccine distribution is making the idea of returning to the office seem more attainable, it is still up in the air what workers will need from the post-pandemic workplace.
Many businesses have already committed to cutting down their real estate footprint, indicating that remote working will continue to play a role in workplace operations.
“We’re not going back to the way things were,” said Brent Hyder, President and Chief People Officer at Salesforce. “I don’t believe that we’ll keep every space in every city that we’re in, including San Francisco.”
According to a study from recruitment specialist Vettery, hiring managers can increase the amount of top applicants by at least 85% by offering remote work options.
However, some employees do want an office to come into, whether it’s the company’s headquarters or a flexible space outside of major metropolitan areas.
It’s challenging to keep up with what workers want, as preferences continue to change month to month depending on how employees feel when they fill out a feedback survey.
The most important way to address the differing preferences of workers is to have a transparent discussion about what they need from their space, and how much they will need moving forward.
A January PwC survey found that 87% of employees view the office as an important place for collaborating. Over two-thirds of executives also stated that employees should be in the office at least three days each way to maintain collaboration, as well as company culture.