Nearly half (47%) said they intend to allow employees to work remotely full time going forward. For some organizations, flexible working schedules will be the new normal as 43% of survey respondents reported they will grant employees flex days, while 42% will provide flexible hours.
“The COVID-19 pandemic brought about a huge experiment in widespread remote working,” said Elisabeth Joyce, the VP of advisory in the Gartner HR practice. “As business leaders plan and execute reopening of their workplaces, they are evaluating more permanent remote working arrangements as a way to meet employee expectations and to build more resilient business operations.”
“The question now facing many organizations is not how to manage a remote workforce, but how to manage a more complex, hybrid workforce,” said Joyce. “While remote work isn’t new, the degree of remote work moving forward will change how people work together to get their job done.”
As employers move toward a hybrid workforce, the productivity of remote employees is a frequent topic of conversation. However, just 13% of business leaders voiced concerns over sustaining productivity. While 61% of business leaders surveyed by Gartner have implemented more frequent manager-employee check-ins, 29% report not taking any measures to track productivity remotely.
Among the challenges of managing a hybrid workforce, 30% of business leaders are most concerned with maintaining corporate culture. Thirteen percent of respondents reported concern over creating parity between the remote and in-office experience; 13% also are concerned about providing a seamless employee experience.
“It is critical that employers get their corporate culture and employee experience right during this period of uncertainty,” said Brian Kropp, chief of research for the Gartner HR practice. “Both facets help ensure organizations achieve the financial, reputation and talent outcomes that will drive business outcomes and competitive advantage.