A new survey from Acas has found that 3 in 5 employers (60%) have seen an increase in hybrid working for staff compared to before the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
Hybrid working is a type of flexible working where an employee splits their time between the workplace and working from home or remotely.
Acas commissioned YouGov to ask British businesses about changes to working practices that they have seen compared to before the COVID-19 pandemic. The poll also found that over half of employers (52%) have seen an increase in staff working from home full-time.
Acas Chief Executive, Susan Clews, said:
Acas advice is that hybrid working can help businesses attract and retain staff as well as increase staff productivity. This is because the flexibility allows them to balance work and personal responsibilities.
Acas's advice for employers includes:
- a company hybrid working policy should explain how someone can request it, how job roles will be assessed and how decisions will be made – it can also include principles such as allowing remote working for a maximum number of days a week
- ensure staff who are working remotely are not excluded and have access to the same opportunities as those in the workplace such as team building activities, training and social activities
- decisions around whether to approve a staff request for hybrid working should be fair, transparent and other forms of flexible working could be discussed as possible alternatives
- make sure employees have the necessary equipment and information to work safely from home – employees might experience pain if they do not have the right working equipment, for example they might have back problems caused by an unsuitable chair and desk
- staff working from home may struggle with switching off from work or work longer hours – employers must follow the law on working hours and employees should make sure they take their rest breaks and take care of their mental health
- consider a trial period to see if it works and if any further adjustments to arrangements are needed
1. Acas commissioned YouGov to poll senior decision-makers in a representative sample of British businesses. The survey was carried out online and the total sample size was 1,074 adults. Fieldwork was undertaken between 28 March and 5 April 2022. All figures, unless otherwise stated, are from YouGov Plc and have been weighted and are representative of British business size.
2. Participants were asked 'Compared to before the COVID-19 pandemic, to what extent have you seen the following working practices change at your company?'
For 'the proportion of staff hybrid working (working remotely or at home part of the week)', the results were:
- 60% have seen an increase
- 1% have seen a decrease
- 39% have seen no change
For 'the proportion of staff working from home all of the week', the results were:
- 52% have seen an increase
- 3% have seen a decrease
- 45% have seen no change