Post-covid world: how do employees aspire to work in the future?

In the months that have passed, the pandemic has created a seismic shift in working and living patterns. Workers adapted to homeworking in compliance with health and safety guidelines and revealed an appetite for greater flexibility and new hybrid ways of working. Workers are experiencing an increased amount of virtual fatigue, or burn-out, and are increasingly wanting to get back to the office most of the time. This suggests that offices will be more important now than ever before as the center of the work ecosystem and that outstanding office environments will remain a critical way to engage employees. 

But how do aspire employees to work in the future?

Discover the 7 Key messages:

1. Work-life balance is the new priority for employees, far ahead of salary.

Homework is such a revolution that employees are focusing on its benefits and tend to be less affected by the porosity between their professional and personal spheres. They expect their employer to build more flexibility into the offered salary package: 88%  want to have flexible working hours in the future.

2. Hybrid work has come a long way.

The crisis has enabled adoption through experimentation: the more people practice homeworking, the more they want to do it in the future. Employees are aligned with global trends, aiming for an ideal of 2 days of remote working per week, mixed between 1.5 days at home and 0.5 day in third-party places.

3. It’s not about time management, it’s about social interaction.

Employees miss the social aspect of the office. What they miss most is the informal interaction and face-to-face collaboration. 61% of the employees are craving “real” human interactions with colleagues.

4. Long-lasting homeworking is hiding a heavy social and mental toll.

Employees’ sense of fulfilment is declining, and they are also more overwhelmed in terms of mental workload: 51% are disillusioned and 44% say they are overwhelmed, having too many personal and professional responsibilities. Parents with young children and people living alone are most at risk. Companies are more than ever held responsible for the health of their employees: their physical health of course, but also their social and mental health.

5. Remote productivity is declining.

Although the performance of homeworking employees remains high, with 43% saying they are more productive at home than in the office, this has fallen since the first lock-down, when 52% of employees said they were more productive at home.

6. Employees have higher expectations towards their company.

Although employees say they need to return to the office to reconnect with their community, they are also much more critical of their usual workplace. Only 48% are satisfied with their usual workplace (vs. 60% in April 2020) and only 36% say they miss the office (vs. 46% in April 2020).

7. Employers will need to upgrade the work experience to create a desire to return to the office.

The more satisfied employees are with their office, the more they miss it. 69% of those who are very satisfied with their work environment miss it very much, compared to only 5% of those who are not really satisfied today. Employees expect their employers to offer them offices that are human, focused on well-being, green, connected to nature and offices fitted with digital tools.

Discover our services in a Post-Covid world

We're here to help you navigate (re)entry and beyond to prepare your workplace, your asset(s) and your people for the next normal in a Post-Covid world.

To find out how we can support your real estate strategy, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Bernard Keppenne
Head of Tenant Representation
Hélène Hebrant
Director Tenant Representation
Hélène Hebrant
Director Tenant Representation