Published on Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Different workers have different needs as they return to the office.


Later this year, it seems likely that workers will begin to stream back in offices. But as they return to work, these people won’t have the same motivations.<

In a new <report, JLL found that expectations of the workplace are radically different according to employees’ appetite for remote-working options. The company pinpointed four different personas of workers and their attitude toward being in the office.<

One group, the traditional office workers, comprises 34% of office workers. Ninety-three percent of these people didn’t work from home before the COVID-19 crisis and think that remote working is not suited to their job requirements or their working preferences. JLL says these people are likely to work in industries with a high presenteeism culture and are quite traditional in their workstyle.<

These workers tend to be older with big companies and non-managers. Fifty-three percent want more socialization in their offices. These workers don’t expect their employers to provide well-being services or pamper them.<

JLL labels another group of workers as experience lovers who demand high flexibility and an office as a destination. Fifty-percent of these people worked remotely before COVID. These people expect to work from home one or two days a week. They have jobs with some management responsibilities and see the office as a place to connect with others with a common DNA.<

JLL found that experience lovers are numerous among managers and workers younger than 50 years old. These people are more likely than the average worker to favor hot desking, working in a third-party place and switching to four-day weeks. They are also more likely than the average worker to want to connect and live memorable moments with their community and be offered a healthy lifestyle.<

Fifty-three percent of the third group, wellness addicts, practiced work-from-home before the pandemic. For these people, work-life balance and health come first. They want work-from-home policies to continue after the pandemic, which will give them a good equilibrium between their private and professional priorities.<

Not surprisingly, wellness addicts want to reduce their commute. They also expect a range of services in the office that they can’t find at home, such as well-being, culture and sports amenities. These people, who are more numerous in digital and tech industries, are more likely to be more anxious about the future, be somewhat disenchanted and have a wait-and-see attitude. They are also more likely than the average worker to prefer cultural services, well-being services and sports services.<

The final group, free spirits, wants full flexibility. Seventeen percent of this group worked from home at least three days a week before the COVID crisis, while only 10% of workers did overall. JLL says they tend to be afraid of the virus and risk-averse and expect their employer to maintain the new working routines imposed by the pandemic.<

Free spirits, who tend to be more numerous in big companies and among non-managers, feel more distant from their company and tend to be less engaged and less fulfilled by their job. Sixty-nine percent of free spirits are attracted to living far away from the city and only going into work when necessary.<

While some workers may demand remote opportunities, work from home is losing its appeal for some companies.<

At a virtual meeting of the World Economic Forum, Barclays Chief Executive Officer Jes Staley and Mary Erdoes, who runs asset and wealth management for JPMorgan Chase & Co, both <cast doubt on the notion that WFH is viable in the long-term for many companies, according to <Reuters<.<

Staley indicated that work from home is beginning to wear on companies and their employees and predicted more people will come back to an office environment with the option to work from home when necessary.<

“It will increasingly be a challenge to maintain the culture and collaboration that these large financial institutions seek to have and should have,” Staley said.<