Benefits and Compensation, Talent

Telecommuting: Not Everyone Wants to Work from Home

Despite the shift toward a more flexible workplace, a new survey finds a majority of U.S. employees prefers going to the office.


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Indeed, the survey, conducted by Randstad North America, a wholly owned subsidiary of Randstad Holding NV, a global provider of flexible work and Human Resources services, suggests workers have mixed feelings about flexibility.
Although 82% of U.S. workers surveyed say the ability to work from anywhere at any time allows them to maintain a healthy work/life balance, more than half (62%) still prefer to work in the office—and the number is even higher among young workers. Sixty-five percent of those aged 18 to 24 say they prefer working in a traditional office environment, challenging the widespread perception that Millennial and Gen Z workers tend to prefer digital interactions over personal ones.

Employer Support

Although flexible and remote work arrangements are top priorities for employees, this is not necessarily the case for employers, who often don’t offer any or provide enough tools to fully support them.
According to the Randstad survey:

  • Sixty-six percent of workers say they like the option of occasionally working from home or another location, but aren’t able to do so.
  • Thirty-six percent of respondents report their workplaces support working from home any time and anywhere they want.
  • Approximately one-third (35%) of employees disagree that their employers provide the necessary technical equipment to enable them to work from home.
  • Thirty percent of workers say they regularly have online or virtual team meetings via video conferencing.

Remote Work and Engagement

Employers should take note of another survey finding: Remote work arrangements drive engagement.
According to the Randstad survey:

  • Sixty-six percent of workers say they prefer to occasionally work from home or another location.
  • Eighty percent of workers say they like agile work (defined in the study as the ability to work from anywhere, anytime) because it increases their productivity, creativity, and job satisfaction.
  • More than half of all respondents (61%) don’t believe this type of work interferes with their personal lives, or their ability to disconnect from work.

“The takeaway for employers: Workers appreciate having the option to work when and where they want, but also value interacting with colleagues face to face in the workplace,” said Jim Link, CHRO at Randstad North America. “Employers who strike the right balance—making flexible work arrangements as accessible as possible through technology while also cultivating a thriving office culture—will succeed in attracting and retaining top talent.”

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