More companies are issuing return-to-office mandates, asking their employees to commute to their old desks for at least a few days per week. From a retention standpoint, is that wise?
Via a LinkedIn poll, Dice asked a simple question: Would you quit a 100% remote job if your company issued a return-to-office mandate? The poll racked up 2,363 votes, and a significant percentage of respondents said they would quit rather than go back (keep in mind that not all respondents were tech professionals):
C’mon, the office coffee can’t be that bad, right? Kidding aside, it’s clear that workers have gotten used to the perks of remote work, and they’re reluctant to permanently give those up. For companies interested in employee retention—particularly their highly specialized tech professionals—embracing a hybrid strategy might be ideal: in survey after survey, workers have indicated a preference for heading into the office just a few days per week.
We can expect companies to wrestle with their remote and hybrid policies for quite some time. Just last week, Amazon ordered its corporate employees to return to the office for at least three days per week. “It’s easier to learn, model, practice, and strengthen our culture when we’re in the office together most of the time and surrounded by our colleagues,” Amazon CEO Andy Jassy wrote in a Feb. 17 memo to employees. But in response, roughly 14,000 Amazonians joined an internal slack channel “to advocate for remote work and share their concerns about the new return-to-work policy.”
Salesforce, Walmart and other companies are also leaning into a hybrid-work mindset, even if they’ve previously allowed their employees to work remotely five days per week. For those executives and managers wrestling with whether to ask employees to return to the office full-time, keep in mind that workers still have lots of options when it comes to hybrid and remote work—and they very much want to spend at least a few days per week at home.