Here’s How Remote Work Is Affecting Hiring and Retention Strategies
How popular is remote work with employees? For instance, would they choose to work from home over a $30K pay raise? Would they give up an exciting job offer for it? Surveys from Blind, HRM, and EY revealed the answer to be a resounding “Yes.”
This article examines workers’ hesitations around returning to the office, its implications on recruitment and retention, and how remote work poses an easy solution.
COVID-19, caregiving, and flexibility are primary concerns for workers
The pandemic has altered worker preferences. COVID-19 risks and caregiving concerns are causing anxiety and angst among employees, thereby deterring them from returning to the office. The HRM study also found that employees expressed a growing desire for better work-life balance, less commuting, and increased flexibility—all prime features of remote work.
EY surveys further showed that nine in ten workers now want greater flexibility in when and where they work. In addition, caregivers, tech and finance workers, and managers/leaders are more likely to switch jobs over the matter, proving that popular pandemic work trends are becoming the norm.
The absence of flexible work is a deal-breaker for employees
Post-pandemic, flexible work will play a critical role in employee career decisions. EY reported that more than a quarter of respondents claimed better work-life balance would be a principal factor in deciding whether to interview for a role. Sixty-seven percent would accept a job only if allowed some element of work flexibility. Over half would consider leaving their current position without flexibility in work hours and location. The majority of employees who declined job offers cited “lack of flexibility” as the main reason. The findings mirrored the HRM study, wherein 44 percent of respondents stated they would refuse a role without some form of remote work.
Employers that embrace remote work will have better hiring prospects. Concurrently, companies without work flexibility will lose out on both existing and future talent.
Remote work trumps pay raises for employees
So profound is employee desire for remote work that workers are willing to trade a pay raise for it. Blind’s survey of 3000+ employees from the largest US companies—including Google, Amazon, and Microsoft found that 64 percent of respondents chose permanent remote work over a $30K pay raise.
For specific companies, the number goes higher; 81 and 89 percent of Lyft and Twitter professionals, respectively, preferred remote work. What’s more, every single Zillow Group employee chose permanent WFH. Employees from just two of the 45 firms surveyed by Blind showed more interest in a raise—by slim margins.
To sum up, concerns about COVID-19 exposure and caregiving responsibilities are compelling employees to work remotely. Moreover, workers have grown accustomed to the flexibility, safety, and work-life balance that remote work offers. Today, people will go to great lengths to work remotely, even turning down job offers or sacrificing a $30K pay raise. Employers will need to make flexible work options a crucial part of their hiring and retention strategies to attract the best talent.
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