Bad news, your boss wants you back in the office

Aussie bosses want staff to work from the office more this year.

·2-min read
People walking to work in the city. Person working from home on laptop.
You could be working from the office more this year. Here’s why. (Source: Getty)

Work from home could be coming to an end. At least, if your boss has anything to do with it.

New data from Robert Half found almost six in 10 Aussie bosses were increasing the number of days their staff worked from the office.

Medium-sized businesses were pushing the hardest for a return to office, with almost three-quarters (73 per cent) wanting staff to work on site more frequently this year, compared to around half of small (47 per cent) and large (58 per cent) businesses.

The main reason bosses gave was boosting company culture (70 per cent), improving staff skills development and career progression (68 per cent) and increasing productivity (66 per cent).

But the jury is out for workers. Around half of Aussie professionals said they would be less enticed to join or stay at a company that required them back in the office full-time.

And bosses are hearing this feedback, with about half acknowledging that returning to the office more often would not have a positive effect on staff retention and attraction.

Robert Half director Nicole Gorton said bosses needed to make coming into the office worthwhile for their employees.

“This can be done by utilising community days, which see teams go in at the same time to allow collaboration and socialising,” Gorton said.

“Other strategies, like offering team lunches or workshops, are more targeted reasons as to why people would want to attend the office.”

It comes as a growing number of companies offer four-day work weeks. Last year, consumer goods giant Unilever launched a four-day week trial for its Aussie staff, following a successful New Zealand pilot.

The tight labour market has also forced businesses to get creative to lure new talent. Some companies are offering staff free rent and accommodation, while others are giving free food and gym memberships.

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