Return to work full time? Many would rather quit their job
New research from Robert Half shows 33% of professionals currently working from home would look for a new job if they're required to return to the office full time.
Robert Half Regional Vice President Dora Onyscak said that's a big number that employers need to recognize.
The survey found 44% of employees would prefer a hybrid work structure. The good news, says Onyschak, is that 46% of employers surveyed said they see a hybrid work model in the future.
Workers want flexibility, said Onyschak. They have found they can work from home and do their jobs well from there. They have found that work-life balance, she said.
There are risks to working full remote, she said. A lot of workers are concerned that if they stay fully remote, their co-worker relationships would suffer. They're concerned about their decreased productivity at home. They're also worried there may be fewer career opportunities because they are not up-front and center in the workplace.
Onyschak said there are many things employers need to consider when transitioning to a hybrid work schedule. They should ask themselves: "Which employees should come into the office and how often? Does everybody need to be in at the same time on the same day? Do they need to reconfigure the work stations and stagger schedules to allow for continues social distancing?"
Employers need to consider meetings. Do they stay fully virtual? How do they manage hybrid meetings? Does it make sense to have certain teams in the office on the same day based on how much they communicate and how much their productivity affects each other.?
"At the end of the day, I think it's important that employees feel that employers are taking their concerns into consideration and that they're addressing them. You want your employee feeling comfortable coming back to the office so you need to address all their concerns whether that is health and safety or whether it's this flexibility that employees are clearly asking for," said Onyschak.
As this hybrid transition happens, employers need to make sure the lines of communication stays open, said Onyschak. The remote staff needs to stay in the loop especially when it comes to in-office meetings. Employers need to touch base with every employee and look for signs of burnout and low productivity.
As a leader, Onyschak said employers also need to be a champion of technology. Try not to wait for someone from tech support to help with an issue. If a manager can help an employee through a tough tech issue, that will help boost morale.
Only 20% of employers surveyed think they'll go back to the office full time which is not a big number, she said.
However, there are some companies that don't have the ability to keep everyone remote. So in this case employers should rethink the perks and benefits for employees. Maybe there's some flexibility for employees in terms of starting and stopping their work day. Is there a way to provide better work space so workers can stay socially distant and they don't have to worry about being too close to one other. She said if companies need everyone back in the office, they should look into offering to pay their commuting costs or perhaps implementing a relaxed dress code.
Always pay employees competitively, especially those who are key to the organization, she said. Look into wellness programs: It's more about medical and dental — employers should look into mental health programs, virtual yoga, relaxation programs to help balance the body, mind and soul.