A new survey shows concerns about lack of contact with line managers during the pandemic.
Workers are worried about lack of contact with their line managers during the pandemic, according to a new survey which comes as the Government announces that working from home restrictions are being dropped from today.
The survey of 4,000 workers by recruiter Robert Walters shows that retention has been affected by a lack of contact with line managers during the pandemic.
It finds that two thirds of professionals who are looking to change jobs this year says a leading reason is lack of in-person time with leaders within their organisation. Other reasons are a lack of progression or pay increase. Robert Walters says the latter are perennial issues, but the lack of face time is a new issue this year.
48% of professionals stated that fewer meetings and less interaction with their manager has led to a dip in their output. When asked how often professionals speak to their line manager when working from home, 22% stated that they “don’t really communicate with manager when working from home” – up from just 3% who stated the same at the beginning of the pandemic.
Many professionals believe that this increasing lack of contact with their line manager has resulted in them being overlooked for new opportunities (44%), progression (37%) and training (26%).
Added to that, the survey found that 62% of professionals would be ‘put off’ a new job offer which was not delivered face to face or via a video call – with a generic email (57%), voice call (33%) or a voicemail being the leading approaches that would put prospective candidates off – and most believing that line managers should be the ones giving the news.
45% said that it is important that they are invited to a team lunch or social within the first week of starting their new job.
The Government has announced a timetable for the relaxing of Covid restrictions in England, beginning with the dropping of working from home guidance and face masks in secondary school classrooms from today. The Government immediately asked civil servants to return to the office as an example to other employers, with the Prime Minister telling them to “show a lead”. However, the Public and Commercial Services union, which represents civil servants and other public sector workers, has warned against a “reckless, headlong rush to increase numbers at workplaces”, saying there needs to be “a properly planned approach”.
Experts have warned against a ‘pendulum swing’ approach to returning to the office and suggest restrictions should be lifted gradually, given high numbers of Omicron still circulating. Meanwhile, research from Hitachi Capital Business Finance shows that a quarter of small UK businesses will stick with working from home until at least April 2023. The analysis shows that the money saved by not having to pay for office space has prompted the decision, with businesses with fewer than 50 employees saving an average of nearly £4,000 a month by not having to pay for an office. The report, which polled more than 1,000 small business owners, found that one in four had plans to continue working entirely from home until at least April next year, while a similar proportion plan to use hybrid working.