While candidates want more remote work, employers aren’t entirely sold

Dive Brief:

  • As some employers try to rein in work-at-home options, job candidates continue to ask for remote work, Benefits Pro[1] reports. The MRINetwork 2017 Recruiter Sentiment Study[2] found that candidates applying for professional, managerial and executive positions want to perform at least some of their work from home. The Martec Group polled 265 MRINetwork executive recruiters globally and 100 employers and 263 applicants in the U.S.
  • The study also showed that 68% of recruiters and 53% of employers said candidates indicated they wanted remote-work options “some of the time” to “very often.” In addition, more than half of candidates say remote work is important when they’re considering their job options.
  • The survey also found that most recruiters believe the labor market is candidate-driven, while most employers and candidates believe the market is employer-driven, BenefitsPro says.

Dive Insight:

After years of offering remote-work opportunities, some employers are trying to get workers back into the office. IBM’s[3] global marketing department started “co-locating” workers for team-building and camaraderie. Yahoo[4] made a similar move.

Employers like General Electric, Inc[5]. and Apple[6] have adopted open office designs with recreation areas and other amenities to attract workers and encourage interaction. Other employers are offering homey[7] office areas[8] to keep millennials in the workplace.

But more employees[9] are specifically looking for jobs with remote-work options, as evidenced by both the MRINetwork survey and a recent ManpowerGroup Solutions[10] survey, which found that 40% of job candidates cite flexibility, which includes work-at-home options, as one of three top considerations in making career decisions. 

With more candidates looking to work from home and employees considering job changes that allow them more flexible work schedules, employers that don’t offer work-at-home options could lose high-level talent to competitors offering job flexibility. Offering work-at-home options on specific days, or as needed, might be an attractive offer for many candidates.

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