Employee WFH frequency affects how they view the purpose of the office

As described in The Corporate Real Estate Guide to the Hybrid Workplace, a hybrid workplace is one that accommodates dynamic occupancy and addresses continually changing employee needs and expectations. One key aspect of a hybrid workplace is working from home (WFH). While WFH gives employees tremendous flexibility, how do their remote work schedules affect how they view the purpose of the office?

JLL asked employees, “After your recent home-working experience, where would you prefer to do the following tasks in the future: at home, in the office, or in a third-party place?

After analyzing over 2,000 responses (mapped in the chart above), we observed the following 3 insights:

Insight 1: The more employees WFH, the less they believe the office will positively impact their work

Why? Employees who work more from home do so because they see more value in WFH than working in the office. It’s also likely that those who work more from home conduct most of their focused-work activities from home. They feel they can do the things listed in the graphic better there—except for socializing.

Insight 2: The importance of office socializing increases the more people work from home

Despite the downward trends of other in-office activities, socializing remains important for employees who work from home full- or part-time. This is an opportunity for corporate real estate teams to boost the employee experience. How are you designing spaces that facilitate employees to socialize onsite (e.g., clean, well-ventilated spaces as well as open or outdoor spaces such as rooftop decks or patios)? Periodic social activities at the office can show off the workplace improvements you make. How will full-time WFH employees understand what an effective environment you’re building if they don’t experience it themselves?

Insight 3: Even if employees work from home full-time, they still see value in the office

None of the in-office tasks were rated below 10% in importance. Sure, some employees may perform much or even most of their work from another location, but they still see considerable benefits to returning to the office occasionally. Normally, downward trends are bad news. In this case, it’s an opportunity to recalibrate—a time for your team to up their game by creating inspirational spaces that perpetuate socialization, productivity, collaboration, and the company culture.

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