The deputy governor and chief operating officer of the Bank of England told a conference today that she expects the return to the office “might be a bit bigger than we anticipate”.
Joanna Place gave the remarks at an event hosted by the Investment Association in which she launched a pilot that will see all Bank of England staff work for at least one day per week in the office from September this year.
The initiative will encourage teams at the Bank to participate in regular ‘team days’, where staff are encouraged to engage in collaborative work.
A set of principles designed to guide the Bank’s approach to work has been created as part of the pilot, which includes putting teams first, including all staff, meeting colleagues and being flexible.
“The challenge – though daunting – is to learn from the many successes we have collected over the past year and use them as a springboard to build more effective, collaborative and flexible organisations. Our staff deserve as well as demand this” she said.
“We also know that the return to the office environment will be a gradual process and that the pandemic impacted people in very different ways.”
She noted that the Bank has been exploring opportunities to incorporate remote working practices into their workflow since 2017.
The speech comes as the Bank is considering permanently cutting staff air travel as part of efforts to ramp up its climate change targets and “practise what we preach”.
Sarah Breeden, the Bank’s executive director for financial stability and risk and lead on climate change issues, said the Bank was having an “active debate” over how to step up its green push.