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3 return-to-office stats that show hybrid work is coming to enterprises

When you think of an enterprise organization, chances are “flexible” isn’t the first thing that comes to mind. But our latest survey of enterprise executives suggests that flexibility will be a priority for enterprises moving forward. In fact, the vast majority of executives surveyed said their organizations plan to adopt a hybrid work model, which will allow their employees to work both on-site and remote during the week.

We also learned that the workplace will continue to play a critical role for enterprises moving forward. Seven out of ten executives said they plan to adopt a hybrid model that requires employees to be on-site for most of the week. In this post, we’ll take a look at these and other key findings of the survey—like when employers expect their people to return and how long they expect hybrid work to stick around. Let’s dive into the results.

1 – 79% of employers plan to adopt a hybrid work model 

Looking ahead, four out of five employers (79%) said their organizations plan to adopt a hybrid work model. For comparison, when we surveyed employees in August 2021, a majority (71%) said they’d prefer a hybrid work model.

The remaining employers (21%) intend to bring employees back to the workplace full-time after the pandemic. None of the employers surveyed have plans to adopt a fully remote model.

Before the pandemic, working on-site five days a week was the norm. The data shows that more established enterprises may be more prone to return to the status quo. 74% of organizations that have been around for 30 years or more plan to adopt a hybrid work model that allows employees to work both on and off-site during the week. That number increases to 87% for enterprises that have been around for less than 30 years. According to respondents, younger companies are more likely to adopt a hybrid model.

Tip: As your team prepares to reopen the workplace, focus on providing a safe and welcoming space so your people can return with confidence.

2 – 69% of employers expect most people back on-site by February 2022

We asked employers, “What percentage of your workforce do you want back in the physical workplace in the next six months?” 69% of respondents said they want the majority of their people (50% or more) back. About a third of respondents said they want 50% or fewer employees back on-site. 

COVID-19 booster shots, which the US plans to roll out beginning in the fall of 2021, will likely be an important factor in employers’ decision to bring people back in the next six months. Once employees get their boosters, we could see a bump in the number of employees who return.

Tip: Employees have gotten into new working rhythms while they’ve been remote. To help them transition back to the workplace smoothly, create a change management plan.

3 – 58% of employers believe hybrid work is here to stay

The majority of employers (58%) said hybrid work will outlast the pandemic. That number jumps to 69% for executives located in the west, but it drops to 49% for those located in the south. The midwest and northeast responded similarly (57% and 58% respectively). 

It’s also worth noting that company size is not a determinant. Employers at enterprises smaller and greater than 3,000 employees both believe hybrid work is here to stay. 

Tip: Now is the time to align with executives on your enterprise-wide plan for hybrid work. Be sure your team has a comprehensive workplace strategy in place for all of your locations that keeps regional requirements in mind. 

The survey results show that the future of work for most enterprises is hybrid. The physical workplace will continue to play an important role for enterprises. In fact, not a single respondent said their organization plans to adopt a fully remote model. When it comes to bringing their people back on-site, most employers plan on having big turnouts by February 2022. And, according to our findings, employees can expect to get used to the flexibility; hybrid work is here to stay. 

Want to learn more about how enterprises feel about the future of the workplace? Download our new report, Enterprise executives say hybrid work is here to stay