When the pandemic first hit, some white-collar workers began to live out Fifth Harmony’s hit “Work From Home” as they traded in their cubicle for the couch. But the former X Factor group has yet to make a follow-up song titled “Work From Hybrid Offices.”
That would be apt for 2022, which saw employers growing slightly restless in the quest for workplace normalcy as they mandated workers back to the office once and for all. It sparked a rise in hybrid work, a compromise between the bosses who want their team at their desks and the employees still looking to maintain their newfound flexibility. A survey from Future Forum this past summer found that 80% of knowledge workers desire location flexibility, and 94% want schedule flexibility.
In the quest to retain employees, some employers are giving workers what they want more than others. Job listings site Indeed measured the most flexible Fortune 500 companies to work for by examining its 10 million surveys compiled under Indeed’s Work Happiness Score during the month of September. This included companies on the 2021 Fortune 500 Index with 1,500-plus data points. The 10 highest-rated for flexibility are:
- Cisco Systems
- Booz Allen Hamilton
- Northrop Grumman
Reigning supreme, Intuit’s rating on flexibility on Indeed is 84, with many of the software company’s reviews speaking positively of the company’s remote options. Intuit’s website notes it’s transitioning to a hybrid policy that will see teams in the office an average of two to three days a week, allowing for exceptions.
Google also implemented a hybrid policy this year, looking at three days on-site while offering a host of new employee benefits that offered more flexibility such as “work from anywhere” time and global reset days. It’s a different approach than that of other companies, which tried to get workers back at the office by offering perks (although Google did face controversy for how it compensated remote workers).
Listening to employees’ demands pays off: Research from Prudential Financial shows that hybrid workers are more likely to feel company loyalty and general satisfaction with their pay and benefits than those who are working only remotely or in-person. A hybrid policy, after all, lends them flexibility.
Employees and their bosses seem to be reaching the middle ground, as the gap between workers’ desired work-from-home days and the number of remote days employers plan to allocate is inching closer to 2.5 days a week, according to WFH Research by Jose Maria Barrero, Nicholas Bloom, and Steven J. Davis.
That’s good news for both parties, as workers are ready to leave if they’re not given the opportunity to work how they see fit. More than half of knowledge workers polled by Future Forum this past summer said they were open to finding a new job in the new year. That increases dramatically for those who are unhappy with their flexibility, as 70% of those dissatisfied said they’re likely looking for a new job.
In the new year, employees want the same thing, and it’s not a company mug cozy or tote. It’s flexibility.
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