Half of Indian organizations favor full office return

MUMBAI: More organizations are encouraging employees to commute to office – 46%, compared to those offering hybrid (32%) or workfrom-home (16%) options.
In these, manufacturing companies are making it mandatory to return to office completely. BFSI (Banking, Financial Services and Insurance) Corporates at 68% and Retail at 57%. Meanwhile, a significant portion (53%) of IT and bpo (45%) firms operate in a hybrid manner, while 24% BPO and 18% IT companies are offering. WFH mandate, according to a study conducted exclusively for TOI by recruitment firm Randstad India Given that the study was completed in the second week of September, it is likely that more IT workers may have also recently moved to hybrid work mode. Even though most of the organizations have reiterated that they have imbibed many learnings from the last two years of work, the study shows that only 6% of the companies that give employees the option to choose work style options.
There are differences between employers and employees. The report reveals that remote working preferences are higher among BPO/IT/Technical employees, especially female BPO workers (86%) as compared to male employees (71%). Only 32 per cent BPO women employees said they would “continue to work even if WFH is no longer an option”.
41% of IT and BPO employees prefer fully remote working. Only 51% said they are open to hybrid and only 3% said they would not want to work from home.
Vishwanath PS, MD & CEO, Randstad India, said that organizations that do not embrace flexibility in workplaces are likely to be left behind. “The nature of the new-gen workforce has forced organizations across sectors to become employee-centric at their core. This has gradually become an important aspect of building and sustaining a successful business,” said Vishwanath. Looking at the demographic divide, the youth, many of whom have not stepped into an office or are experienced colleagues, who prefer remote or flexible work. The study showed that 56% of workers up to the age of 23 said they might or might not continue working if WFH was not an option, and another 8% Were sure about changing jobs. Around 82% of employees up to the age of 23 and 50% in the 24-30 age group said they prefer flexible timings.
natwest group Head (HR International Hub) Manish Menda Said, “We would like to continue to provide flexibility and leverage through a hybrid model. This flexibility has been well received by our associates and we are confident that it will help us retain our talent and also support them and their well-being”
While employers are keen to bring employees back into the office, there is reluctance to hybrid work as well. One in three employers spoke about this reluctance and the primary reasons include employees now getting used to the remote work model. Randstad said the propensity for remote working is strongest in Mumbai (85%) and Bengaluru (76%) and lowest in Kolkata (65%).
The proportion of employees working from the office on any given day is only 15-16% in the BPO and IT sectors. Wednesday is the new Monday. “Imagine that out of 2,200 seats, 200 are filled on Wednesday. And that is the pinnacle. There are barely 50 people in the office on Mondays and Fridays,” said the CHRO of an internet service company. Although the nudge to return to the office continues, it’s admittedly a soft push as employers are making places to reduce the risk of attrition.

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