Remote working set to continue after coronavirus ends - survey suggests

Half of London business will continue to support some form of remote working when the coronavirus ends, a new research survey suggests

A new survey, which spoke to 500 business leaders in the UK capital, revealed that one-in-two plan to continue offering remote working to staff, while a third expect to cut down on office space.

Two in five have reduced their office space

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London Chamber of Commerce, who conducted the study, said that almost two-thirds of employers have allowed staff to work from home at least two days a week as a result of the pandemic.

Two in five of the respondents have reduced their office space, and most will continue to hold meetings virtually where possible (Shutterstock)

Two in five of the respondents have reduced their office space, and most will continue to hold meetings virtually where possible.

Just over half said they will continue remote working in some form each week when the pandemic is over.

Richard Burge, chief executive of London Chamber of Commerce, said: “This is a further body of evidence that shows changes to ways of working that we have seen during the pandemic are going to carry on in some form for some businesses after it is over.

“Our research shows that half of businesses will continue some remote working, whilst a third of businesses polled will continue with reduced physical space, and three in five will maintain virtual meetings where possible.

“That will mean less commuters daily in certain parts of London than pre-Covid. Clearly this presents challenges for supporting businesses in those areas.

“Meanwhile, more people will remain in their ‘home’ boroughs each day, and that brings potential opportunity to those areas.

“With a visible hybrid approach to ways of working emerging, rail companies simply must be offering part-week, flexible, season ticket options.”

Hybrid model of working is the future

Businesses across the country have been preparing plans for how their office’s will function once the UK returns out of lockdown.

Nationwide announced today (25 March) that they will allow 13,000 office staff to choose where they work under a new flexibility scheme

The UK's biggest building society said its "work anywhere" plan would allow employees more control of their lives.

Speaking to Sky News, Metro Bank said plans for a “hybrid model” are in development.

"The overwhelming feedback we had during the course of last year was that how we have worked in the past is not how our colleagues want to work in the future," a Metro Bank spokesperson said.

"We developed our future working plans in response, and when we return to the office we will move from being in the office full time to a hybrid model where colleagues split their time between working from home and working in the office."

A survey conducted by Willis Towers Watson in November 2020, revealed that working from home rates are anticipated to remain high in the long run.

After UK companies saw levels of home working nearly quadruple from 2019 to 2020, the research anticipated that remote working levels will drop slightly at the start of 2021, but they will remain high, with nearly two-thirds (64 per cent) of employees continuing to work from home.