IT’s Latest Contribution? Boosting Employee Recruitment and Retention

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IT is often viewed as a cost centre, but recent research shows IT teams are saving organisations significant sums.

How? By delivering remote working solutions that help organisations retain/recruit knowledge workers.

A survey by Bloomberg Intelligence (£) found 73% of London workers would rather quit their jobs than return to the office full-time. Stemming this exodus would require giving employees a median pay rise of 11-15% for those earning £15k-£25k pa, a rise of 16-20% for those earning £25k-£99k pa, and a rise of over 20% for those earning £100k or more per year.

This distaste for full-time on-site working isn’t just a London thing. Gartner expects 67% of UK knowledge workers to have hybrid or fully-remote working arrangements in 2023. A 2022 US-centric from a division of Gartner since spun off makes clear how job candidates and employees feel about their working location:

  • Of candidates that work on-site full-time, 68% would prefer not to do so. 59% would prefer hybrid working, and 9% would prefer fully-remote working.
  • Of candidates that have fully-remote working arrangements, 70% would prefer hybrid working instead. Just 2% would prefer to switch to working on-site, full-time.
  • Of job candidates that have hybrid working arrangements already, 88% would prefer to continue hybrid working. 9% would prefer to switch to full remote working. Just 3% would prefer to switch to working on-site full-time.
  • 67% of candidates that currently have hybrid/full-remote working consider the hybrid work model to be "very important" when evaluating potential employers.

Gartner Senior Research Director Ranjit Atwal says organisations will lose out to rival employers if they fail to accommodate knowledge workers’ preference for hybrid working.

Offer Hybrid Working to Stay Competitive

Gartner suggests benchmarking against what rival employers’ are offering your candidates in terms of on-site/hybrid/remote working. This varies by job function.

IT, Marketing, HR, Finance and Legal jobs are most likely to offer hybrid or fully-remote working. Manufacturing, Maintenance, Logistics, Hospitality and Facilities/Construction roles are least likely to offer it.

Matching rival employers’ arrangements is a start. However, if your organisation is struggling to fill its open positions in a timely fashion, it may be worth offering greater flexibility over work location, where feasible. Not only does it make your organisation’s jobs more attractive, but it also makes it possible to recruit from a wider catchment area.

The Higher the Salary, The More Likely Candidates Are to Expect Hybrid/Remote Working Arrangements

In February 2023, the UK’s Office for National Statistics (ONS) published data on the characteristics of homeworkers in Great Britain.

For those earning £50k or more, 80% did hybrid/remote work. For those earning £40k-£50k, the figure was 59%. For those earning £30k-£40k it was 49%. For those earning £20k-£30k it was 36%. For £15k-£20k it was 29%. For £10k-£15k it was 24%, and for those earning less than £10k it was 13%.

Age also has an impact: Just 21% of GB working adults aged 16-24 had hybrid/fully-remote working arrangements. That rose to 47% for 25-34 year olds and 52% for 33-44 year olds. It was 48% for 45-54 year olds, 38% for 55-64 year olds and 41% for workers 65 or older.

Unlike Gartner’s survey, the ONS figures were of working adults, not just knowledge workers. ONS found 44% of GB working adults had hybrid working arrangements or worked solely from home.

Recruitment/Retention isn’t the only Cost Saving

With many staff working from home for at least part of the week, many organisations are finding they have surplus office space.

Large firms are saving money by letting smaller office leases lapse, reducing the space they take in given buildings and by subleasing unwanted space.

Smaller firms find themselves able to grow without increasing their office footprint.

The potential property rental savings are huge – more than enough to cover the cost of remote working solutions, even if one ignores the recruitment/retention savings.

This change to property strategies is cementing hybrid working as some employers no longer have enough space for every employee to come in every day.

Make Hybrid Working Secure

Hybrid working is here to stay given employees’ unwillingness to give it up unless paid extra and job candidate’s preference for firms offering it.

However, hybrid working does have a downside: it increases the organisation’s attack surface. Technical solutions exist that can help keep your network, data and devices safe. As a Fortinet partner, hSo can deliver:

For more information, call hSo on 020 7847 4510 or fill in the form below.

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