- Nearly three in four employees said they're eager to get back to the office in a recent Glassdoor poll — and roughly half said they expect to be back in the office "in some capacity" by summer 2020, according to the results released May 27.
- Respondents said they're primarily looking forward to socializing with co-workers and in-office collaboration. Eighty-three percent said they trust their senior leaders "to make an informed decision" about re-opening.
- Employees also expect companies to implement certain safety requirements. More than half of employees surveyed said they expect their employer to mandate wearing masks in the office, and 45% said they expect workstations to be placed at least six feet apart. Thirty-eight percent expect temperature checks before they are allowed in the office.
Many employers shifted to remote work in response to the COVID-19 pandemic due in part to concerns for employees' physical safety — but some employees in a recent Peakon survey said their employers are "out of touch" with the kind of stress they're facing while working from home. Employees also said they feel pressured to work harder and longer and that their managers don't trust them. For that reason, employees may be looking forward to a return to normalcy. What that looks like, however, may be a stark change.
"While many workers are eager to return to the office, employers considering re-opening offices should clearly communicate that the workplace is going to look very different and keep employees informed on what that means for them," Glassdoor Chief People Officer Carina Cortez said in the Glassdoor blog on the topic.
Some employers, including Facebook and Twitter, have either considered or made official a permanent shift to more remote work. Analysts, too, noted that broader remote work adoption may be a lasting change in the business world. While 53% of employees are working remotely right now, according to analysis from Willis Towers Watson, the firm only expects that percentage to drop to 22% post-pandemic — three times higher than the 7% measured last year.
For employers considering a return to the office, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has confirmed that employers can perform temperature checks on returning employees and ask them questions about potential symptoms, provided certain conditions are met.