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New working habits won’t die quickly 13 May 2021

With vaccines going into arms, people can finally anticipate a return to the office. But after a year away, companies and employees alike are both rethinking the way things were in the before times. 
All those “return to office” articles from last summer might have been a tad premature. As we approach the summer of 2021, however, with vaccination campaigns finally gaining steam and countries unveiling their “this time we really mean it” re-opening plans, returning to the office is back on the agenda. After a year plus of working at home, what will this return look like? Are companies eager to have their employees back in pricey real estate? Do companies even still own those expensive offices or did they use the pandemic as the prime opportunity to reduce costs and shrink their footprint?
 
So many questions. I decided to look at some of the different elements surrounding the “return to office” decisions that are occupying the minds of executives. The result is our newest report entitled Workforce: The hybrid model is here to stay. Given that Efma’s membership includes some of the top, global financial institutions, we thought it made sense to examine some of their plans to get an idea of what the future of work will look like.

Another key element of this equation: employees. I also looked into how it’s been going from their point of view. It’s a mixed bag. For some, the newfound freedom is a blessing and they can’t imagine going back to 5 days in the office. For others, this past year has burnt them out and they can’t wait to divide their personal and professional lives once more.
 
Hopefully this report can shed some light on these crucial questions. We are all intimately familiar with the disruption Covid-19 brought to our lives. Following more than a year of radically new working paradigms, life won’t just magically snap back into place. What replaces the office routine of old will be dependent on many factors. Banks have cost considerations they need to weigh against expectations of their workforce. Striking the right balance will be key to attracting, retaining, and motivating the next generation of employees.

Download your copy of the report now!

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