More than a third of UK workers would quit their current role if their employer demanded they return to the office full time.
That’s according to recent data which found that 32% would move to a different industry, 19% would take a pay cut, and 30% would adopt a new career in order to continue working part of the week from home.
The research also found that 11% of women would be willing to take a 50% pay cut compared to 5% of their male counterparts in order to sustain a hybrid working arrangement.
While work-life balance has long been touted as the primary driver when it comes to facilitating hybrid work, the rising cost of living is coming to the fore as the main reason why workers don’t want to travel into a centrally-located office building every day.
And with inflation continuing to soar at 9.2% (up from January’s 8.8%), British families are feeling the pinch: in December 2022, family spending power was down by £23.18 per week (a 9.9% decrease) and the average family had just £212 per week to spend on non-essential items and services.
These sobering figures are compounded by the fact commuting costs are also escalating by 10.9% year-on-year. According to research compiled by Confused.com, hybrid working can save employees an average of £328 a month on train travel and up to £128 a month if they commute by car.
Then there’s the savings to be made on not buying coffees, lunches and clothing.
Employers can also benefit as companies can expect to save £8,100 per employee on fixed overhead costs including rent, heating and support staff, while also reducing their carbon footprint.
So why are so many employers insisting their staff come back to the office?
“I think fear is one [reason],” Frank Weishaupt, CEO of video conferencing company Owl Labs suggests. “We’re in the midst of hearing about a recession and there’s concerns about what impact that will have on businesses.”
He adds: “People are nervous that they’re not getting maximum productivity. Employees feel more productive when they are able to do their work in the location of their choice, which is primarily remote, but they believe that being in the office is better for their career.
“How does that make any sense? There’s a mismatch there, and I think the mismatch is trying to make that leap from the way we once worked to where the future of work is going to be. I think it’ll be choppy for a while.”
If you prefer a role that allows you to follow a hybrid or remote working model, the City AM Job Board has thousands of opportunities across the capital, like the three below.
Scale London has been instructed to find a Construction Solicitor for a firm based in London. The firm has doubled in size over the last few years, attracts outstanding talent from the UK’s elite, including Magic Circle firms, and is consistently facing ever-growing demand from first-rate clients. In this hybrid role you’ll join the real estate department and undertake a varied caseload of property development matters. Applicants should have a minimum of two years’ PQE experience in construction or property development. View more details here.
The counterparty credit risk (CCR) underwriters at Citi are responsible for the underwriting, approval and extension of credit within the margin lending and capital markets businesses of Citi Private Bank (CPB) within Citi Global Wealth (CGW). As a CCR Underwriting Manager you will implement a new aspect of the risk framework within Citi and focus principally on identified clients of Citi with a CGW nexus. You’ll also be responsible for credit structuring and underwriting of derivatives, loans and capital markets deals for Citi Private Bank clients. See the full job description here.
Octopus Energy is looking for a Senior Finance Manager to drive the development of group financial control across global operations. You’ll have hands-on experience identifying and addressing audit risks and implementing accounting excellence and consistency. You will collaborate to identify and assess risks, and develop and implement new controls and processes to mitigate identified risks and support rapid growth. You will need to be Big 4 qualified with at least three years’ post-qualified experience. Find out more about this role here.