With the number of COVID cases steadily declining, companies have begun encouraging staff to return to the office. However, not all the employees agreed to this and wanted to continue working remotely. This is because the employees have concerns regarding balancing their life.
Employees don’t want to return
When the corona pandemic came in the year 2020, people were introduced to working remotely. It has been two years now since companies were giving their employees the option to work from home. And now when the situation is a bit eased up, the employees are not agreeing to come back to the office.
According to a survey, the main problems of employees about returning to the office are: 90% think that they will contract Covid-19 in the office, 86% will have to compromise on their current lifestyle, 84% fear a poorer work-life balance, 81% citing long commutes, and 71% unable to provide care to parents and children.
Meanwhile, the survey also reveals that 68% of employees are comfortable and look forward to returning to the office.
Godrej Interio conducted a study, which explains why employees are worried about returning to the office. A total of 350 office-going employees were put to test in the age group 21–56-years, most of them working for MNCs and Indian corporates.
The study demonstrates different factors such as employees’ return to work concerns, changing the traditional use of office spaces, and views on working from home and from the office.
According to the research study, well-being became a priority for both employers and employees over the past two years with 31% workforce saying employers should be interested in employee wellbeing. Also, employees noticed a difference in, both, their own and their teams’ well-being over the same period with 62% heeding an improvement in personal well-being and 50% in their team’s wellbeing.
In the partial unlock phase, 26% of employees are still in their hometowns and away from the cities where their offices are located whereas 18% returned to cities where their offices are located.
20 percent of the employees are in favor of full-time remote work while 23 % are in favor of full-time office and 6% are location agnostic, said the study.
“As companies gear up to welcome all employees back to the office, employee mindset about a good work-life balance has changed immensely. Despite seeing the advantages of work-from-home culture, the concept of a formal workplace has not faded completely. However, the pandemic has extended discussions of how office spaces can be used more effectively. At Godrej Interio, we are seeing demand for more collaborative furniture in the office space and are looking to grow the segment by 25% in this financial year,” said Sameer Joshi, associate vice president, Godrej Interio.
Offers given by the companies
To tackle such a situation, big companies are giving many types of offers to their employees to return. To motivate them, Google is offering free electric scooters.
The company believes that people have become used to working from home and are not ready to come back. That’s why a free offer of an electric scooter worth Rs 75,000 is being given by Google. Initially, the employees will have to purchase this scooter by themselves, and later the company will pay for it.
Also, companies like Tata Consultancy Service (TCS) have now introduced a 25×25 model and a hot desk for the comfortability of its employees. This model seeks to bring people back to the office and slowly transition into the hybrid work model. Under the model, by 2025, no more than 25 percent of the company’s employees will need to work from the office at any given point, and an employee will not need to spend more than 25 percent of their time in the office.