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BEERG Newsletter - Future Work: A weekly roundup of developments

Many thanks to Philip Bickerstaffe for drawing out attention to a fascinating podcast featuring the well-known US labour relations academic, Peter Cappelli, from the Wharton School. In the podcast, Cappelli says:

  • Don't bet against what employers want. They have the money and power. If they want you back in the office, you will be back in the office.
  • Early career individuals would be crazy not to work from the office. 
  • The biggest buyers of commercial property are tech companies. 
  • It's one thing to WFH when everyone is doing so (pandemic) and another when you have to put your hand up for it. 

Cappelli also has some interesting things to say about social media labour activism. You can listen to the podcast here

MEANWHILE A great majority (more than 85%) of UK finance workers no longer view the office as their main place of work, according to a YouGov poll of more than 500 finance executives commissioned by Bloomberg last month. 

Just 14% now consider the office their main workplace compared to 42% for the home and 44% for a hybrid arrangement. Bloomberg notes that the rise of remote work is a particular challenge in finance given that some critical roles, such as trading, demand a fully staffed office. 

But whether employers like it, or not, hybrid working arrangements are here to stay. “Everyone is going to have to engage with remote work to some degree,” said Claire Tunley, chief executive officer of the Financial Services Skills Commission, which is focused on building the UK finance sector’s skill and talent pipeline. “Working through the challenges of it is key.”

ALSO IN THE UK: more than a third of working adults in Great Britain spent at least part of their time working from home this spring, an official survey of working patterns shows, with the proportion of people hybrid working growing even as Covid restrictions eased. More than four in five workers – 84% – told the Office for National Statistics (ONS) they wanted to continue splitting their time between home and the office after the pandemic, while the ONS also found hybrid working patterns had shifted towards employees spending more working hours at home.

The ONS found improved work-life balance was reported to be the main benefit of working from home for at least some of the week, cited by 78% of the workers who split their time between office and home. Meanwhile, half (52%) of hybrid workers told the survey they found it quicker to complete their work at home, mostly because there were fewer distractions, while almost half (47%) reported improved wellbeing as a result of increased home working.

Published on: May 25, 2022

Authors: Tom Hayes

Topics: Evolving Workplace, The UK and European Union

Tom Hayes

Director of European Union and Global Labor Affairs, HR Policy Association

Detailed Bio

Contact Tom Hayes LinkedIn

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