Poll supports hybrid working post-Covid

A British Council for Offices survey has backed other studies showing widespread support for hybrid working in the wake of Covid.

Two women doing a video interview on a laptop


Britain is set to move to a ‘mixed’ working style, with time in the office balanced with time at home, according to a new poll.

The survey for British Council for Offices, which polled over 2,000 office workers nationwide, took place in early September prior to new Government restrictions.

Asked about how they planned to work for the next six months, almost half of office workers (46%) intended to split their work between home and the office, while 30% were set for a full, five-day-a-week return to the office. Only 15% of respondents planned to only work from home.

The appetite for hybrid working spanned the work hierarchy. At the top end, 62% of C-suite respondents planned to split their time between the home and the office, while 58% of trainees aimed to do the same.

Only 7% of marketeers planned to work from home full time over the coming two quarters, making them the least keen profession to stay home, with 62% of this group stating they enjoy the creative exchanges that occur in the office.

The survey also found that most office workers did return to their office in August, with 64% having spent some time in the office since August 1st, and almost a quarter (24%) having worked a full week back at their desk.

On the benefits of some office working, 71% stated that the office is important for developing networks and learning. Meanwhile, 65% said their career has been helped by relationships forged in the office and 71% agreed the office is important for forming connections with colleagues.

Richard Kauntze, Chief Executive of the British Council for Offices, said: “Our way of working is changing, and a new, mixed working approach is becoming popular. This does not mean the end of the office. The office is valuable for career development, which relies on forming networks and the informal lessons that come from watching senior colleagues operate. This is particularly true for young people, who would suffer if working from home ever became totally predominant.

“The coming months and years are an opportunity to reimagine the office and its purpose. It is time for Britain return to the office, but doing so doesn’t mean a return to how we used to work. Let’s embrace the change.”

Meanwhile, an Institute of Directors survey shows nearly three quarters of UK executives said they would encourage more staff to work from home after the pandemic.

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