Wed. May 29th, 2024
Tim Cook

TL;DR – Bosses are eager for staff to return back to office, citing better collaboration and camaraderie as reasons. Employees aren’t as gung-ho to do so for various reasons.

The dreadful commute. Extra laundry. Costlier lunches. It seems like many are still longing for the good-old work from home years.

While I’m one of the lucky few who’s still working from home since PM Lee announced that up to 75% of staff can return to office from 29 March, I’ve been hearing how sian my friends are at having to return back to office. Most of them 2 to 3 times a week, some ‘unlucky’ ones – 100% back to office.

“You know, Apple is asking their employees to return to the office one day a week only,” someone shared. Well, Apple’s plan is to introduce a hybrid schedule, adding days in office after 11 April, enforcing two WFO days weekly by 2 May, and three WFO days by 23 May.

Sounds reasonable enough! But apparently, that’s ridiculous for some Apple employees. Erm ok.

While the POTUS has also started urging workers to return to their offices, employees are seemingly not quite ready for the new-new normal with current employees taking to social media saying that they “don’t give a single f about ever going back to office”.

And looks like come April 11, they will be sending in their resignation letters.

60% of workers says when the pandemic is over, they’d like to work from home all or most of the time.

According to Pew researchers, “60% of workers with jobs that can be done from home say when the coronavirus outbreak is over, if they have the choice, they’d like to work from home all or most of the time.” This is up from 54% who said the same in 2020.

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Closer to home, it seems that Singaporean workers are finding it hard to adjust to the new / old work-from-office life too.

A recent survey by human resources solutions agency Randstad found that after working from home for close to two years, 41% of workers in Singapore would rather continue working remotely than receive a bigger bonus. What about you?

work from office

Earlier this year, Labour Chief Ng Chee Meng shared at a media event that NTUC will try to support women workers, who also have family responsibilities, with flexible work arrangements.

In Parliament this week, Labour MP Melvin Yong also called for an accelerated timeline to entrench flexible work arrangements as a workplace norm, “We should strike when the iron is hot… and roll out the guidelines when many employers are still fresh from having the majority of their workforce telecommuting.”

Labour MP Yeo Wan Ling has also pledged to continue to advocate for Flexible Work Arrangements. Great that the Labour Movement is looking into new ways to support workers in this new world!

“This pandemic is taking a toll on our mental health!”

Back to office – or not? The corporate world is forever changed!

After two years of working from home, guess everyone is still figuring out this new-new normal, and a balance will be established in time to come. For various reasons from convenience, caregiving, visibility etc, some may prefer WFH, while others may prefer WFO but one thing’s for sure, the corporate world is forever changed!

Speaking of that, time to dig out my office wear from the dark recesses of my wardrobe just in case.