Canadian employees want flexibility as return to work ramps up: survey

After two years of in-person COVID-19 restrictions in the workplace, employees have gotten comfortable doing their jobs from home. But as employers plan to get everyone back in the office, it’s the employees who are saying ‘not so fast.’

“There is a sort of imbalance right now with the number of open positions and the number of available talent in the market,” said Koula Vasilopoulos, senior district president at Robert Half Canada Talent Solutions.

“In a recent survey we did, about 55 per cent of employers indicated their desire is to have their employees back in the office. In a similar survey, but done for employees, 53 per cent of the employees indicated that if they were required to go back to the office full time, that they would quit and they would look for another job.”

WATCH: CityNews’ Jillian Code reports on employees driving the Canadian job market

The same survey suggests millennials and working parents are the people most likely to ditch their job if they were required to come into the office five days a week.

“I think what employees are looking for most is that flexibility,” Vasilopoulos said.

A lot of employees are recognizing the convenience of working from home, having the flexibility to care for their pets, cook, and not have to worry about commute times.

Data from Robert Half shows that job postings are shifting to match what employees want, with more companies offering remote or hybrid positions, with increased wages.


“You have a bit of an employee-driven market,” Vasilopoulos said. “Employees have lots of choice.”

On the job search website Indeed, there are more than 17,000 job postings in Calgary alone.

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