Whether it’s returning to the office with precautions, going 100% remote, or adopting a hybrid work model, the reality is that companies must now offer more flexibility in the workplace. 61% of employees in the chemicals industry find flexibility in when they work remotely to be very or extremely important. There are some jobs—in production or labs, for example – that can’t be done remotely in this industry. However, the pandemic forced employers to consider other job functions that could work remote, at least part of the time. Completing work such as writing reports, sending emails, submitting patent applications, or meetings with managers can be done virtually.
Flexibility applies to more than just where, or even when, employees work. It also means letting employees have a voice in deciding which type of work they do at home vs. in the office. Research from the O.C. Tanner Institute’s 2022 Global Culture Report found tasks that require focus or creative thinking are easier to do at home, while tasks requiring collaboration and connection are easier and more productive in the office.
Moving forward, employees expect increased flexibility in many aspects of their work lives and will change jobs, if necessary, to get it. But when employees have flexibility in how they work, outcomes improve:
WHAT ORGANIZATIONS CAN DO:
To successfully incorporate flexibility, focus on three key areas:
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