One-Third of Executives are Prepared to Quit over Return-to-Office Mandates

One-Third of Executives are Prepared to Quit over Return-to-Office Mandates

One-Third of Executives Prepared to Quit over Return to Office Mandates

One in three senior executives would leave their roles if they were obliged to comply with return-to-office mandates.

Additionally, 19 per cent of non-executives also claimed they would leave their organization due to a return-to-office mandate.

The survey of 3,500 employees commissioned by Gartner highlighted the disagreement over mandatory office days between employers and employees after the dramatic shift in working models brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic.

“Retaining key talent has become harder due to mistrust between employees and employers, employee burnout and disengagement, and fiercer competition in the labor market,” said Caitlin Duffy, Senior Director in the Gartner HR practice.

“With RTO mandates influencing the job-seeking and loyalty of senior-level candidates and employees, organizations that force workers to come into the office are likely to weaken their leadership bench and complicate succession planning.”

A further survey of 3,000 candidates from Gartner revealed that 36 per cent of senior-level job seekers who have faced an RTO mandate said it influenced their decision to leave their job. While one-third said that employers had discontinued a hiring process in the last year due to expectations that employees would return to a physical workspace.

Sachin Agrawal, UK Managing Director at Zoho, commented: "Employee expectations around work have shifted significantly, partly catalyzed by the pandemic. The newly introduced UK flexible work bill underscores this shift, acknowledging the importance of work flexibility. Many workers value the balance enabled by this shift, and it is understandable that there is reluctance to return back to a model of full in-office working.

We recognize the value that a mix of both in-office and remote work provides and advocate a hybrid work model. This provides the best of both worlds. There is certainly some work which is best carried out in person, and as we are social beings, it is also an important consideration to provide opportunities for team members to spend time together in the workplace and embrace the culture. However, employees can have more flexibility at the time when they are able to work from home or at a remote location which best fits their lifestyle, and one in which they can be fully productive and more motivated as a result.

Wherever employees are working, technology serves as a critical enabler for businesses striving to provide a consistent employee experience across different locations. Provision and adoption of the right digital tools are essential for seamless communication, collaboration, and productivity.

As Gartner advises, businesses should 'motivate rather than mandate.' Those who move towards mandating office-only working may find themselves contributing to another 'Great Resignation' trend and risk losing what is the most valuable asset to any organization to drive its success - a loyal and motivated workforce."

Sheila Flavell CBE, COO, FDM Group: "Over the recent year, hybrid working has become much more common among organizations, and in order to thrive in the technology sector, it is essential for companies to be flexible and cater to the different needs of multigenerational workforces.

While there is more flexibility post-COVID, there is also a push for staff to return to the office. Employers must focus on business growth, which in turn ensures job security and opportunities for staff, while equally prioritizing staff wellbeing. Employees should have the digital skills and experience to choose where they work most productively, be it at home or in the office, so companies can run efficiently with the consideration of their employees' needs."

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Fabrice Beaux

Business Expert

Fabrice Beaux is CEO and Founder of InsterHyve Systems Genève-based managed IT service provider. They provide the latest and customized IT Solutions for small and medium-sized businesses.

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