In Lockdown 2, 30% of job postings on UK job board, Indeed, were marked as ‘temporarily remote’. Now, in the UK’s third lockdown, that number has jumped to 60% – as we become more hopeful for life’s return to a semblance of normality.

The frequency of jobs listed that can be done from home skyrocketed last year. But for the first time since the pandemic began, the amount of jobs that are only temporarily WFH-friendly due to COVID-19 has outstripped those marked as permanently remote.

Many are putting the increase down to employer optimism that a return to the traditional workplace is on the cards for the near future.

With the first few stages of lockdown measures easing now behind us – hopefully for good – it’s easy to be hopeful for a speedy return to ‘the old normal’.

But can things really go back to how they were?

Many believe the answer is no.

So much has changed in the last year in every aspect of daily life. And a return to the traditional workplace certainly isn’t immune to new rules and restrictions.

Handshakes, mask-wearing, and carrying bottles of hand sanitiser everywhere you go may be here to stay for good, but it seems like the working-from-home lifestyle many of us have become accustomed to might not be.

Last March, businesses scrambled to move their operations online quickly and provide efficient ways of working for their staff remotely. And just as there were so many things to consider during the change last year, there’s much to organise this time around too. The difference is, this time around, we’ve got plenty of time to get our heads round the complex rules and regulations.

The news of the potential return of life in the office comes just months after a study finding that a large number of employees would resign their jobs if their employer insisted a full time return to the traditional workplace.

While waving goodbye to working from home comes with its drawbacks: losing out on flexible working patterns, greater autonomy and freedom among them; there are also a wealth of benefits to consider.

Fewer distractions, more connectivity with our colleagues, not to mention the opportunity for after work bonding now the pubs are back open again are just a few of the things we’d have to look forward to as the months go on.

Perhaps businesses should look to a joined up approach of both the opportunity to work in the office and from home is the best way forward to please both camps.

 

 

Ending furlough and the logistics of getting staff back to work 

 Ending furlough, coping with redundancies, handling individuals who cannot return to work and updating risk assessments are just some of the considerations on the minds of those in charge of gearing up their workforce for a return to the traditional workplace en masse.

For those feeling a little in the dark about the logistics of moving back to the workplace after a year of remote working, why not attend one of our upcoming webinars? You’ll hear from an expert in employment law and HR, and they’re free-to-attend!

 Our guest speaker, Elaine Huttley, Partner at national solicitors Irwin Mitchell will be hosting the event – spread over two dates for those with busy schedules. Not only will attendees get the chance to pose their specific questions to Elaine during a Q&A session, but the top employment solicitor will be covering the following topics:

  • Ending furlough and the logistics of getting staff back to work 
  • Agreeing different working patterns (including reducing hours) to reflect the changing needs of the business
  • Updating risk assessments and making changes to protect staff returning to work
  • Dealing with individuals who can’t return to work, including those who remain at high risk
  • Redundancies, including the minimum periods of collective consultation
  • Electing employee representatives to deal with redundancies
  • Redundancy consultation during lockdown and furlough

Want to find out more? Interested in booking your place? Click here to find all the information about the event, and how to register. We’ll see you there!

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