Return To Office

Return To Office Not Happening Across The Board

USA – While Kastle Systems’s latest Workforce Barometer showed that office occupancy level has increased significantly during the start of Autumn, the return-to-office trend is not happening across the board, according to a new report published by Jones Lang LaSalle (JLL) on Monday evening (10 October, SGT).

Even though working somewhere other than the office has become prevalent for more than 50 percent of corporate staff, JLL’s Workforce Preferences Barometer showed that Generation Y and Z are more inclined towards hybrid work, which isn’t the case for Non-Managers and Baby Boomers.

As a matter of fact, 37 percent of employees beyond the age of 50 are likely to report to their workplace 5 times per week compared to merely 20 percent for personnel under the age of 35.

“We are seeing a major generational clash, creating friction between those who desire choice and flexibility and those who are detractors of hybrid work,” said Flore Pradere, Director of Research in JLL’s Global Work Dynamics team.

“It’s interesting to note that the most senior age groups are split between advocates and detractors of remote work, making it a challenge for the latter to support teams in a work routine they’ve not embraced themselves.”

In addition, data from JLL revealed that parents, women, and people of colour are more interested in adopting hybrid work, which Pradere believes creates opportunities to enlarge the traditional talent pool, however this could negatively diversity in the brick-and-mortar office.

The real estate consultancy also pointed out that older managers and executives have a less favourable view on hybrid working arrangements, as they prefer to keep tabs and exert control over their underlings via visibility and face-to-face interaction.

“It’s not surprising that some executives who have spent almost an entire career in the office, are struggling to adapt their management techniques, reverting to what they know,” added Sue Asprey Price, Chief Executive at JLL’s Work Dynamics team for Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA).

Furthermore, cultural variances are emerging. “In countries with hierarchical management approaches like Japan and France there has been less flexibility, with employees expected in the office more often,” noted Pradere.

“But in the UK, US and Canada, the model of empowerment and managing by objectives lends itself more readily to flexible work,” she added.

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