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Why You Should Rethink That Return-to-Office Mandate

Use these three strategies for bridging the gaps between employees and employers in the age of remote work

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 just might be the ultimate “will they, won’t they?” If corporate leaders had their way, workers would’ve collectively resumed their pre-pandemic patterns of office-based work mere months after initial lockdowns. And indeed, some did try to call their workers back to the office by the end of 2020. Others, such as  and , set their sights on fall 2021. Unfortunately for them, the delta and omicron variants had other plans.

However, a large percentage of employees aren’t returning to their cubicles quietly. According to a recent study from the Future Forum Pulse, 76% of workers don’t want to return to full-time office work, and they’re prepared to make the road back to the office anything but direct. A global survey of more than 32,000 workers determined that nearly two-thirds are prepared to resign from their posts if served a return-to-office mandate. And with 47 million American workers resigning in 2021 alone, it wouldn’t be wise to call their bluffs.

Related: Turning the Tide on the Great Resignation

Why employers are pushing for in-office work

To understand the disconnect between employees’ demands and employers’ expectations, you need to first understand why employers want employees back at their desks in the first place. For the most part, they aren’t implementing return-to-office policies because employees aren’t getting their work done. In fact, research shows that productivity increases by about 13% when employees are allowed to work from home at least part of the time.

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