The future of work is a lot of things: hybrid and remote work, mental health-focused and less office reliant. While all this is true, a new report is highlighting exactly where professionals stand today.
In Owl Labs and Global Workplace Analytics’ (GWA) sixth annual State of Remote Work report, full-time U.S. workers expressed exactly what is valuable to them, and how well their employers are doing to meet those expectations.
According to the survey, the flexible work tug of war between employers and employees has continued to permeate work culture. In fact, 68% of respondents were found to prefer a fully remote or hybrid work model, a 3% increase from the year prior.
Those who wanted full-time remote work grew six percentage points, stating that they would be happier and more productive with this option.
The divide between desired work arrangements varied between generations and genders, too.
Millennials were found to be the group who most wanted full-time remote positions, while Gen Z preferred hybrid work and Baby Boomers desired a traditional in-office arrangement. Additionally, 46% of women preferred a fully remote model compared to 39% of men.
Despite the clear demand for more flexibility in the workplace, 47% of employers have yet to do their own internal survey to understand and apply employee preferences.
Even more worryingly, employers seem to prefer some form of in-person work, but have done little to improve these environments. In fact, just 19% of companies have expanded their collaborative spaces even though teamwork is cited as the top reason for workers to be in the office.
“Priorities and preferences have evolved for both workers and employers in the past year, bringing flexible and hybrid work to the forefront, even as some companies have continued to attempt a ‘return to the office’ push each fall since 2020,” said Frank Weishaupt, CEO of Owl Labs.
“This new data shows that successful businesses need to present a range of hybrid options and technologies to keep workers happy and productive, as one-size-fits-all remote or in-person policies don’t allow everyone to do their best work. Listening to employees is crucial as companies iterate on their policies, practices, and product solutions to align with team members’ needs.”